Dimond Prom is Returning to Roots

“Prom should be about the students, school and community,” Jim Anderson, math teacher and Junior Class Sponsor, said. “Proms are traditionally in school, so this year we wanted to return to our roots.” This year, Dimond is trying something they haven’t done for more than 30 years: hosting Prom on campus. Many of the Dimond alumni teachers do not remember ever having a Prom at Dimond. Such a thing was unheard of; a hotel was the way to go. Patricia Walker, Assistant Principal, however, says that that was not always so. “My junior year at Dimond was the first year Prom went off campus,” Walker says. “It was always on campus before.” Walker is excited to bring Prom back to Dimond. Proms have been getting more and more expensive over the years with students spending nearly a thousand dollars on dresses, dinner, tuxedos, and limousines. With Prom being held on campus, Walker says that the school can provide the same magic and memories of the dance, but at a much lower cost. Without the high price of a venue, Walker says that the junior class can put more money into decorations and things such as the potential valet parking. Dimond has been on the forefront of many new additions to high schools, and Walker hopes that Prom will be one of them. She would like to see Dimond become the trendsetter for keeping Proms on campus. This would bring the focus back to the school and make the high school experience what it used to be. It would also be an opportunity for schools to cut down on the cost of Prom and put more effort into making it the experience it should be. The decision to have Prom at Dimond was not entirely based on the desire to have Dimond return to its roots and make the event more about the school. A major factor was scheduling. “The timing for Changepoint didn’t work,” Anderson says, “and it’s hard to decorate a hotel.” With Changepoint out of the question and the administration disproving of the idea of students getting rooms after the dance, the only other option was to host Prom on campus. “April is packed with days of cultural significance, HSGQE testing and Easter,” Walker says. Due to these conflicts, students wanted Prom to be April 16. This would give students a full week before the dance for a proper spirit week. Unfortunately, this date did not work with any other venue. This, paired with the cost, prompted Dimond’s return to its roots. There are mixed feelings among students about hosting Prom in the old gym. Tina Phanmanivong, senior, says that “I don’t mind if Prom’s in the old gym as long as I can have fun with the people I love.” Heidi Klotz, senior, agrees and says that “having Prom in the old gym wouldn’t be a bad idea.” However, Matt Longacre, senior, says that he is “not overly fond of the idea.” He does add, though, that he thinks it would be improved if it had a “laser projector.” The consensus from interviewed students is that if the dance is in the old gym, then they do not want to pay as much for tickets. They think that since Dimond does not need to put as much money into a venue, then it should reduce tickets prices. Igaramkin approached Anderson and asked him about potential ticket prices. His answer: “You get what you pay for.” When asked about a potential theme for Prom, Anderson said, “I’m not going to let the cat out of the bag.” He said that students had questions last year about having Prom at Changepoint, but they all ended up having a great time. Anderson is confident in his creativity for the decorations and theme for Prom. He says that he has an idea, but has not yet approached the populace with it for comment. One theme idea that has been proposed by students is masquerade. Walker thought this could be a good idea, but says that students would not be allowed to wear masks. Another idea presented by Chelsea Huffman and Erskine Frank, seniors, is a casino theme. This idea is supported by Klotz and Longacre, along with Ringo Tyson, senior, and Alexa Perry, junior. Archival photographs and conversations with Walker and Dale Evern, Assistant Principal for the Freshmen House, reveal that Prom actually used to be held in the Student Center in the old Dimond building. The Student Center was similar to the Main Commons now and used to be the place where Dimond would host all its dances. This creates a mystery: Has Prom ever been hosted in the old gym, or will this year present something entirely different?