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Seniors Enjoy Prom Seniors

“ The lights are low, the dresses are swaying across the floor, and throngs of couples are dancing so close it’s impossible to tell where one ends and another begins. The dance floor is enveloped in heat, the band is grooving and there is magic in the air. It’s “A Night to Remember”, it’s “Carpe Diem”, it’s Prom! “Prom should be really fun, it’s getting to hang out with all my friends for one great night,” THS senior Frank Pinkney said. Prom is this, but there is another often unspoken side to prom. Post–prom parties. “Parties are a part of prom, it’s a part of high school,” THS junior Logynn Morascyzk said. Although some after-prom parties feature pizza, movies and games, other after-prom parties add alcohol, drugs or both to the mix. Parents worry about their children using them. What many teens aren’t willing to admit is that they wonder and worry about using them too. Part of the reason that alcohol and drugs are present at after-prom parties is that couples now go where there is no adult supervision. Often, that place is a hotel room. “It was just unheard of for high school students to rent hotel rooms for post prom partying,” etiquette instructor Madeline Zachary said to “Pageantry Digital Magazine” when discussing how prom has changed in the last 40 years. “Strict rules applied and you would stay out late, but return home the same night.” Somehow things have changed. “I think people get caught up in the drinking aspect of prom night and [their thoughts] revolve around drinking after the actual dance,” Morascyzk said. What those who drink or use drugs are less likely to think about are the consequences of their behavior. The simple truth is that people do stupid, sometimes harmful, things when they’ve had too much to drink.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrators (NHTSA), over 6,000 youths, ages 15-20, die each year in alcohol-related incidents in the United States. The highest concentration of these deaths occurs around prom and graduation seasons. And these are just the deaths. Alcohol also impairs one’s ability to think and act responsibly. Take sex. Many teens aren’t ready for it. Some view sex as something that is sacred and should only happen after marriage. Others want to save it for someone they love and that may not be their prom date. Yet, those who get drunk on prom night are seven times more likely to have sex and much less likely to use protection or condoms, increasing their chances of pregnancy and STDs. “I think some people treat sex as a ‘having fun’ type thing,” Morascyzk said. “But it really is a big deal and I think teens should take it more seriously.” According to records kept by the FBI, in cases of assault 55 percent of the victims and 75 percent of the attackers were drunk when the assault took place. “I would not be okay if someone took advantage of me like that,” Morascyzk said. “That’s wrong in every way. And for people to think like that, shows how immature they are.” To reduce the stress and anxiety that could come with the evening, it’s important that you and your date know one another’s expectations. Experts suggest that couples talk with one another about their expectations before they go out. Set boundaries and be prepared to keep them. That evening, be assertive and say no if you feel uncomfortable. Prom doesn’t have to include the typical drunken post-prom haze, but instead memories with friends that will last a lifetime. This prom season be safe while having fun. Make prom about “dancing, bright lights, and maybe a disco ball,” Morascyzk said. “Because those are always fun!”

According to records kept by the FBI, in cases of assault 55 percent of the victims and 75 percent of the attackers were drunk when the assault took place.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrators (NHTSA), over 6,000 youths, ages 15-20, die each year in alcoholrelated incidents in the United States. The highest concentration of these deaths occurs around prom and graduation seasons.

— BY gabbi brandini

Photo By Danielle Kuhrt

Wolf Connection/Leadership students got their “swag” on while residents from various retirement homes relived the swing days at the third annual Senior Prom, which was held at Eastwind Community Church last month. Scores of residents were accompanied by their dates from the Leadership class. They spent the evening dancing, chatting, taking prom photos and playing bingo. An eleven-person senior citizen band, “The Prime Time Swingers,” played maracas and washboards as well as bass guitar and keyboard as attendants danced the cha-cha. One springy old-timer swung his partner around in true swing-style fashion. “We went to a bunch of retirement centers, and we let them know about the dance,” Leadership student Ryan Johnson said. Many senior citizens did not have proms during their high school years during the 1940s and 1950s. “This was meant to get them out of their homes and give them something fun to do,” senior Jordan Dugmore said. Many resident live day-to-day without visits or exciting social interaction. “They don’t do a lot of things,” said Joe Rudd, an administrator at Marquis Care, a local nursing home. “But tonight they are all smiling.” “Even the ones that don’t smile often are smiling tonight,” Gloria Banclay, winner of the Prom Queen award, agreed. Communication Leadership students had to put many hours into the event, and many of them feel that it was well worth the effort. “It’s just a way to say thank you to the elderly, who have really shown us how to live,” senior Brody Channell said. “The only thing that is different about this prom compared with proms in the 1940s and 50s is the date on the calendar. People still want to dance, people still want to be with each other.”


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