IN 2007:
IN 2007:

What a successful year the Association of Lyceum Past Students
has had in 2007! Thanks are certainly due to all at the helm
of this dynamic association: the members of the Council of
Administration and the respective commissions, who gave all
the time and energy necessary to cement ALPS in its position
as one of the leading and most active associations of its
kind in Malta. This is borne out by the favourable comments
continuously heard after each event held, be it social, cultural,
civic, philanthropic or other. The satisfaction at each event
invariably results in more new members joining up or coming
up to date with their membership fees. These are the sort
of results that make each member of the Council proud and
gear us up to do yet more as the elected representatives of
more than 650 members.

We started out describing the first socio-cum-philanthropic
event as “the biggest event ever”. It was, indeed,
but we did not know what was in store for us all during the
year – and we will soon start having to look for some
new expressions because, even if we say so ourselves, the
events being organised continue to break all ALPS records
for the type of event. Even so, January will continue to be
remembered for the fund-raising event organised by ALPS with
the aim of raising as much funds as possible to enhance the
proceeds of the Lyceum Bicycle Marathon, which this year went
to Id-Dar tal-Providenza. The fund-raising dinner was held
at the Paradise Bay Resort Hotel, where 340 participants occupied
one of the largest restaurants in Malta for a lavish grand
buffet dinner complete with a cabaret show. The success included
over 140 rooms being occupied overnight. The net proceeds
of the evening reached over Lm500.

Buoyed by such a great source of energy the new Council of
Administration elected at the Annual General Meeting held
at the end of January 2007 lost no time in getting together
around the table, setting up the respective commissions and
starting to work on the programme of activities for the year.

That first great event was followed by another fund-raiser,
again for the Lyceum Bicycle Marathon. This time the event
was held at the Topaz Hotel. In keeping with the previous
one, this social function included a well-prepared buffet
dinner, which started off with a welcome drink for the approximately
300 persons attending. The attractive prices offered by the
hotel management induced a number of those attending to stay
overnight – some even stayed a whole weekend because
the event was on a Friday. The weekend yielded another nice
amount of Lm500 towards the good cause of helping Id-Dar tal-Providenza.

Malta in general – but ALPS in particular – could
not have had a better start to 2007 with the designation of
Fr Paul Cremona OP as Archbishop. The people rejoiced at the
excellent qualities of their new spiritual leader, but all
Lyceum past students felt proud as Fr Cremona was himself
a Lyceum past student who had started his years at The Lyceum
in 1956 and stayed until the early ‘60s.

The Association of Lyceum Past Students was given a new visual
image with the introduction of new and modern letterheads
and envelopes, in keeping with the association’s principles
of continuing to show professionalism to its members and friends
in particular and the public in general. The new stationery
was ably designed by Ramon Micallef of Box Design and printed
by Bonavia Printers, whose director, ALPS member Anton Cassar,
was only too proud to sponsor a substantial part of the first

March 2007 was a very busy month for all on the ALPS Council
of Administration, with the main focus being of course the
Lyceum Bicycle Marathon. All commissions were somehow involved.
Permanent Council member George Grech, a former Headmaster
of The Lyceum, and Civics Commission Chairman Oscar Galea
represented ALPS on the Marathon Organisation Committee: the
latter also helped with the logistics. Communications &
Publications Commission Chairman Laurie Vella worked closely
with his counterpart on the organising committee to handle
all the news releases and adverts. Other Council members including
President George Stagno Navarra, Treasurer David Abela, Assistant
Secretary-General Charles Calleja, Philanthropic Commission
Chairman Dr Nazareno Azzopardi, Social Commission Chairman
Alfred Formosa and Lyceum Scouts Coordinator Joe Micallef
managed the catering and drinks section at the marathon venue
with great professionalism. Membership Commission Chairman
Anthony Aquilina together with Projects Coordinator Leo Scicluna
and Council member Robbie Ferrante also gave a helping hand
in various sectors of the organisation.

Great thanks go to Mrs Therese Calleja and Mrs Madeleine
Stagno Navarra, who besides giving welcome helping hands at
the bazaar also prepared six lovely hampers which were raffled
during the marathon weekend, with proceeds also going for
the same cause. Items included in the hampers were kindly
offered by various council members, while several association
members donated items for the bazaar. As a result of all the
good efforts by ALPS the association managed to donate Lm1,700
towards Id-Dar tal-Providenza: by far the association’s
biggest contribution ever, not including the bazaar items.

For the past 11 years the Foundation Day Concert had always
been held in the Main Hall of the Lyceum, with varying degrees
of success as regards attendance. For 2007 Cultural Commission
Chairman Joe Fenech came out with the idea of doing something
with a difference and on a bigger scale. For several weeks
he put all his efforts into a concert version of the famous
operetta La Danza delle Libellule. The show was presented
to a full house at the Salesian Theatre in Sliema on 28th
April. The very enjoyable evening included the participation
of soloists Karen Camilleri, Louiselle Pace Gouder, Connie
Frances Zerafa, Joseph Aquilina and Joe Huber, accompanied
by pianist Cynthia Genovese. Also taking part were the Youth
Orchestra of the Società Filarmonica Sliema, the U3E
Choir trained by Yolanda Micallef, and a troupe from the CATS
Dance Company. Monica Attard and John Dimech ably compèred
the show. Thanks to the efforts put in by all involved, but
especially Joe Fenech who also directed the whole show, it
was a real night to remember, with the resounding applause
of the packed audience who filled every corner of the theatre.
The after-show comments were excellent and the theatre management
congratulated ALPS for having attracted the biggest-ever audience
to the Salesian Theatre. Having been advertised as a fund-raising
event in aid of the Salesian Youth Centre, the show yielded
the very welcome sum of Lm450 which were presented to the
Salesian community after the show.

May was no less a busy month for the Association of Lyceum
Past Students. This time the council trained its sights on
organising a springtime cultural tour, also taken care of
by Joe Fenech. He went into great detail and listed the important
sights in Zurrieq. The tour was eventually conducted by Mr
Tony Terribile, a well-known historian and guide. In attendance
were a good number of members, spouses and friends who were
taken to a number of Zurrieq landmarks, including the Xarolla
Windmill, the parish church of Zurrieq and Hal Millieri Chapel.
The tour was followed by lunch at Wied iz-Zurrieq.

Also in May the Council of Administration organised the now-traditional
annual weekend spiritual retreat at Manresa House in Gozo.
This year’s programme was led by Fr Henry Formosa SJ.

Following the outrageous destruction of 3,000 saplings at
Mellieha, President George Stagno Navarra came up with the
bright idea of ALPS participating in the 34U Campaign. The
suggestion was immediately taken up and the appropriate forms
provided by the Environment Department were sent to all members
and friends with ALPS News. In the meantime Mr Stagno Navarra
set up the necessary contacts with the authorities to allocate
the association an appropriate site for the proposed ALPS
Olive Grove and programme a collective planting event. This
was successfully done and now the association is proud to
have a small olive orchard at the top end of Kennedy Grove,
which can be easily accessed and visited from near the Bela
Vista Hotel.

During a council meeting held in June it was decided to set
up a new St Anne’s Chapel Commission to take care of
the chapel in Pwales. The commission is headed by Dr Nazareno
Azzopardi with members Leo Scicluna and Oscar Galea. The council
took the opportunity to thank Charles Calleja and his wife
Therese for the work they had so lovingly done ever since
the chapel was entrusted to ALPS.

Also during the same meeting ALPS set up another sub-committee
to work on a new project: the restoration of the Lyceum Archives.
These important archives, which are currently in a sorry state,
need urgent care and restoration. Led by Project Coordination
Commission Chairman Leo Scicluna, the sub-committee also includes
George Grech and Robbie Ferrante. With a view to the success
of the project the council sought the help of President Emeritus
Ugo Mifsud Bonnici, himself a Lyceum Past Student, and ALPS
member Charles Micallef St John. It is gratifying to point
out that the project has the full blessing and backing of
Education Minister Louis Galea, who has always encouraged
the association in its activities.

The Mnarja BBQ held at the Coastline Hotel on the eve of the
feast of St Peter and St Paul was another great success. Members
and friends filled up the hotel’s open-air terrace and
enjoyed an excellent buffet dinner. The pleasant atmosphere
under a clear sky and cool evening continued to well after
midnight, when participants started to think about returning
home while praising ALPS for another well-organised event.

The annual feast of St Anne at the Pwales Chapel was held
on 14th July. Mass was celebrated by ALPS Spiritual Director
Fr William Bartolo OFM Conv. This year’s event was animated
by the San Gwann Choir under the direction of Mr Ray Storace.
The feast ended with a reception where all present enjoyed
cold drinks and wines and some good eats prepared by members
of the council and their wives.

After long and hard work the association can boast of another
great success. This year will be remembered by many for the
Grand Reunion held in Toronto, Canada. A group of ALPS members
and friends led by President George Stagno Navarra went on
an organised three-week tour to Canada. The climax of the
tour came early on: it was the reunion with Lyceum past students
residing in Canada on 31st August, making it a memorable day
especially for the President, Secretary-General Alex Borg
and Treasurer David Abela on the Malta side and ALPS Canada
President Milo Vassallo who made all the arrangements for
an excellent dinner at the exclusive Ontario Club, as well
as for the rest of the tour. Forty-four Lyceum past students
and their spouses who have settled in Canada joined their
Maltese counterparts for this special event. It was really
a wonderful occasion for old friends to meet and new ones
to be made. Mr Stagno Navarra distributed certificates and
a memento to all the Maltese-Canadian friends. Milo Vassallo
was presented with a well-deserved certificate of Honorary
Life Membership of ALPS and Mrs Vassallo, who was the perfect
hostess during our stay in Toronto, with a large silver frame.
The group of ALPS participants from Malta then continued on
an unforgettable tour in Canada, visiting the Rockies and
Vancouver and taking a cruise to Alaska.

The now-annual Lyceum Grand Reunion for 2007 was the greatest
ever to date. Hundreds of past students from all walks of
life converged at The Lyceum in Hamrun on 12th October to
relive memories of their education with former schoolmates.
The guest of honour was Archbishop Paul Cremona, himself a
Lyceum past student. He concelebrated Holy Mass for all those
who attended together with a number of priests, including
Mgr Lawrence Gatt who entered the school 60 years ago, Fr
Anton Gouder and ALPS Spiritual Director Fr William Bartolo.
Welcoming all present, including Education Minister Louis
Galea, the President of ALPS spoke about innumerable gentlemen
that the Lyceum had turned out and who had made their old
school and their country proud. At the end of his speech Mr
Stagno Navarra presented Archbishop Cremona with a gift and
a parchment appointing him Honorary Life Member. ALPS donated
a selection of books to the Lyceum Library. All guests present
were treated to a reception.

The annual Requiem Mass for the repose of departed ALPS members,
teachers and Lyceum past students and relatives, as well as
departed relatives of the small Pwales community, was held
on 17th November at St Anne’s Chapel at Pwales Valley.
A surprisingly-good number of members, friends and members
of the Pwales community braved the miserable rainy weather
to attend.

Another novelty this year has been the creation of the ALPS
Choir under the direction of Joe Fenech, who also took care
of all preparations for the 2008 Foundation Day Concert. Riding
on the success of the 2007 Foundation Day Concert, this will
be an alla grande production of a concert version of the popular
operetta La Principessa della Czarda. Mr Fenech says the choir
is of very good potential. The ALPS Choir includes a good
number of the council members and their respective wives,
as well as a number of ALPS members and friends.

Following the success of two years ago when the association
launched the philanthropic project Pitazz u Lapis, collecting
thousands of exercise books and pencils from Maltese schoolchildren
for donation to children in Peru, this year the project is
again being spearheaded by Philanthropic Commission Chairman
Dr Nazareno Azzopardi, who wrote to all State and private
schools urging them to participate in the new project named
Pitazz u Lapis jew Gugarell. The collection of all items will
be made during the second week in January 2008. All items
collected this time around will be passed on to the Mission
Fund, which will then forward them to Tanzania.

The Association’s Yuletide Dinner-dance was held on
7th December at the Paradise Bay Resort Hotel, the same venue
where the association had held its first social activity for
2007. The resonant feedback from the previous members and
friends who attended the successful dinner in January encouraged
the Council of Administration to revisit the same venue for
another big and successful function. Hundreds of ALPS members
and friends attended for this great evening of enjoyable camaraderie,
good dining and dancing to a live trio. Most of the participants
took the opportunity to book a weekend at the hotel.

The ALPS Foundation day Concert for 2008 has been brought
forward to Saturday 19th January 2008. This will be a concert
version of another popular operetta, La Principessa della
Czarda. Cultural Commission Chairman Joe Fenech, the director
and organiser of this event, has again put all his energy
into ensuring another great success.

Before concluding this extensive report highlighting the great
successes attained by our Association of Lyceum Past Students
during 2007 I cannot but mention the hard work by all members
of the Council of Administration, who invariably did their
best to obtain the highest standards that a dynamic association
like ours deserves.

In 2009 we will be celebrating the 15th anniversary of the
association. If things continue to go as they have done they
will have been 15 years of one success followed by another
greater one. The new Council of Administration will certainly
not leave any stone unturned to organise more outstanding
events to be cherished in the memories of all those who have
ALPS at heart.


2004 2005
2006 2007