A private room at the Cooper's Corner restaurant in Winfield was filled Friday afternoon with guests attending a big birthday party, complete with colorful balloons and a green and white cake.
The celebration wasn't just for one person though -- it was for more than two dozen graduates from Glenbard West High School's Class of 1952, who are all turning, or have turned, 80 this year.
"We have a good camaraderie in our class," said John Tobey of Lombard, one of the former Hilltoppers who helped organize the event and a number of past reunions. "It's neat to keep up with their goings and their comings."
Joan Woods of Winfield flipped through the slightly wrinkled pages of her yearbook before lunch was served, its pages filled with hundreds of black and white photos.
According to a graduation pamphlet Woods also brought along, 251 students graduated from Glenbard -- the only one that existed at the time -- in 1952. Roughly 20 servicemen also received diplomas from the school that year.
Since 1962, the class has been getting together every five to 10 years in places within the school's old boundaries -- which spanned from Lombard and Glen Ellyn to Roselle and Itasca -- and as far away as Nevada, attendees said. The reunion committee, which is made up of graduates who still live in the area, also meets about every other month.
"We have fun," Woods said, adding that she thought it was "kind of unusual," but nice, for a class to be hosting an 80th birthday celebration for its graduates.
Some of the attendees were close friends growing up. Bonnie Archbold and Joan Ring grew up about four blocks from each other in Lombard and met on the school bus the first day of freshman year.
They recalled walking home together with other friends whenever they wanted to stay after school for an activity, because there were no school buses for students from Lombard who stayed late.
Archbold also told how she became Ring's sister-in-law by marrying Ring's oldest brother.
"I saw him get on the bus and I went home and wrote in my diary, 'I'm going to marry that man.' And I did," she said with a smile.
Other graduates, such as Audrey Fitzgerald, didn't know anyone personally at the party. Like others in the room, the classmate Fitzgerald used to attend the reunions with died a few years ago.
But Fitzgerald decided dropping in at the 80th birthday party would be a good pit stop on her journey from her home in Kalamazoo, Michigan, to see her daughter this weekend in Evansville, Indiana.
"These are wonderful to come to," she said.
She recognized some people who were in activities with her in high school, including Quill and Scroll, the student newspaper, history club, Latin club and Thespian Society.
"It's still nice to be here because you find out there are memories that other people have that you may not have, but you can share the memories you have," she said.