Prom provides relief to end-of-year stress

From Issue 9

Prom is one of the most memorable moments in all of high school, filled with flashing lights, booming music, and a crowded dance circle.  This year’s event was on April 1 at the Ivy, resuming after a one year hiatus due to COVID-19.

Prom King Cass Rutledge and Prom Queen Sarah Herring. (Photo courtesy of Tori Johnston)

The virus has given the school significant setbacks this year, and after the school canceled homecoming last minute after originally postponing it, students wouldn’t have been surprised if prom was just an April Fool’s joke. Student Body President Tori Johnston and Vice President John Henry Andress were in charge of most major dance decisions, such as location, decorations, and music. “We worked with Fresh Cut catering to create a perfect masquerade-themed Prom. The main colors were turquoise, hot pink, purple, and lime green. Lilly Noble and Ms. Hepner worked hard to set up the photo backdrops before the dance,” Tori said of the dance preparation.

Seniors who completed their garage sale hours from last school year had free admission to the dance, while juniors had to pay the regular $35 per ticket. On the day of prom, seniors had their long-awaited ditch day, leaving juniors to roam the halls as the upperclassmen. 

Seniors and juniors arrived fashionably late to the dance after spending hours getting ready, taking pictures, and eating dinner before arrival. The party buses and cars squeezed into The Ivy parking lot as students waited in line to be breathalyzed before entering the venue. Walking in, the band had just begun to play and there were three photo backdrops to take pictures with and an array of tables on the side. Junior Wilkie Gonwa loved how all the multiple photo opportunities went with the theme. “I liked the backdrops at the dance, especially the one with all the balloons, they were all so pretty!”

The irony of the theme “masquerade” was that no one wore their masks. Ever since the mask mandate was lifted and cases have gone down, people have been more lenient with not wearing masks. Others also considered that multiple students and faculty have received their COVID-19 vaccine and felt comfortable enough not to have a mask. 

Students were surprised by how much they enjoyed themselves dancing to the band, Compozitionz. Senior Graham Speed said he had a fantastic first and last prom.“ Having a live band was one of the best parts.” Compozitionz hyped up the crowd with songs by the Jackson 5, Florida Georgia Line, and Ariana Grande, and songs such as “Teach Me How To Dougie” and “Forget You.” Junior Jake Vineyard complimented the band with, “The love band was far superior to any DJ we have ever had; the energy brought to even the slow songs was amazing.”

Towards the end of the night, Cass Rutledge and Sarah Herring were crowned prom king and prom queen, respectively. The two had a quick celebratory dance party onstage before taking pictures with friends. Afterward, students slowly started to thin out and head off to their afterparties. 

Mr. Coco’s reflection on the dance was, “We were extremely excited to have prom this year. All the parents, teachers, students, and faculty were a huge help in making this event possible. Particularly excited for our seniors to experience this milestone event at the end of the year.”