A Brief History of the Save the Wildlife Fund (SWLF)
As early as our Tenth Reunion in 1981, our Reunions co-chair Ed Milne envisioned free Reunions for our Class. This has since become a reality for our Class off-years Reunions. The other Tenth co-chair, Stu Rickerson, was looking for a way to accomplish what the 25th Reunion Classes from our College Days did: Those classes brought back the “bands of their times” to Reunions stages. During our undergraduate years, these bands included Count Basie, Lionel Hampton, Duke Ellington and Artie Shaw among others you may have seen.
Thanks to the generosity of a handful of 1971 Classmates, these dreams were realized when an unannounced “Special Guest” took our 25th stage in 1996. Stu did not even name the “Big Act” at our Class Meeting in Alexander Hall that Friday afternoon, but stressed that everyone should be on the dance floor well before the scheduled 9 pm starting time because “something special” was about to happen. Smokey Robinson, resplendent in his 1971 Class Blazer, backed by his own famed orchestra and supplemented by a 16 piece string section SWLF hired from the Philadelphia Academy of Music arrived on stage. Smokey and his band entertained more than 6,000 Princetonians spanning 60 graduate classes for over 2 hours.
Smokey Robinson h71
The fact is not a single dollar of Reunions registration fees went to bring Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Smokey, Creedence Clearwater, Oscar-winner Darlene Love, or Mike Love and The Beach Boys (twice) to the 1971 Reunion stages. Nor did 1971 registration fees pay for the world-class sound systems that are required for these great bands (and also used to enhance the sound of other stage acts at those ’71 Reunions).
Stu Cook (l) and Doug "Cosmo" Clifford (r)
Surviving co-founders of Creedence
Darlene Love h71
Mike Love h71
Please give what you can or give an amount that represents what the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Reunions memories SWLF have delivered to you, your families and your friends.