Sats Celebrate Half a Century

20171111_201610Saturnalian New Years Association celebrated 50 years in Mummery this weekend in a fun and beautiful gathering at SugarHouse Casino.  It was extraordinary going through the decades with images of the past performances and remarks by former captains like John Griffith, Dave Moscinski and John Zakrewski, and current captain, Jack Hatty, Jr. One fun fact among many with Saturnalian: It took first prize in its very first parade in the late 1960’s.  The Sats honored the living and departed members of the club and also celebrated the contributions of women members to the Fancy Brigade.20171111_214651 Josephine Thompson, a 12 year member of the Sats, led that recognition.  I am also grateful to the club for its welcoming of me to the event.  20171112_210822Saturnalian has a successful history and is again a brigade on the rise.  Here’s to the Richie Ski and all the gang going from last year’s “Gangs of New York” performance at the Pennsylvania Convention Center to a fun circus theme in the works this coming New Year’s Day.  It will be a great night for the club from 1811 S. 2nd Street.

Hall of Fame: Fran Casper

IMG_20140222_202930_13911 Fancy Brigades and leaders from other Mummers divisions this weekend stood and applauded Saturnalian NYA President Fran Casper.  If you want to know a Mummer, catch up to Casper.  Franny lives up to the best of Mummery, including dedication, family and a love of the tradition of this people powered hobby.

Mr. Casper has been a mainstay of Saturnalian since 2001.  He got started with another Brigade, the Jokers, in 1973.  The next year he joined the Merry Makers and remained with them until 1996.  He took a break from Mummery, but joined the “Sats” in 2001.  His brother, Tommy, was the Captain.  Franny’s commitment was obvious from the start, however, and by 2004, he had been elected president of Saturnalian. 10 years later, he is still president.

Fran Casper was inducted this weekend into the Fancy Brigade Hall of Fame.  Current Saturnalian Captain, Jack Hatty, Jr., delivered the induction speech describing Fran at the annual Fancy Brigade banquet .  He called Fran proud and selfless, a competitor and a doer.  “Not one time since I have known him, has he put himself over the club,” said Jack.  Fran’s leadership is all the more inspirational because of physical challenges he’s been working through the past few years.  Hatty added, “He is still the glue that keeps the club together and the president that pushes each of us to be a better member. That is the mark of a leader.”

Congratulations to Hall of Famer Fran Casper and to the members of the Jokers, the Merry Makers and especially, the members of Saturnalian NYA.