Ah yes, Junior and Senior Prom of 2022. Tickets $20 (per person) before hand and $25 (per person) at the door. The theme was Enchanted Forest, the dance held on April 30th, 2022 at the Anacortes Depot from 8:30 to 11 pm. Guest contracts would have been picked up at the ASB window.

Before prom though, there was set up. This was the same day, but from 2:30 to 8 pm, with clean up at 11:15 pm, and it was worth 6 hours of community service. I went to the set up, and can I just say that it was incredibly fun? It doesn’t sound fun, and sure, we had 3 hours of nothing because everything was done, but it was still so fun! We had a lot of people, but a lot of people started leaving around 3. The small group that stayed turned out to be mainly people I already hang out occasionally.

Don’t asked me how clean up was though, I wasn’t able to go at 11:15 pm. Too tired, and plus, I had to keep reading The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller. (Great book, BTW, highly recommend!)

I loved the little red and white mushroom lanterns, and the fairy lights, like they were so cute I literally could not. Who knew that putting together chairs and tables were one of the hardest things? Like honestly! We had to place the tables outside, in the back, and then we had to put the chairs down. . Then we realized a fence was going around a chunk. We threw the chairs (not literally) away from the tables and started putting them in two rows of 4. We then had to make sure there were 6 chairs per table, then tie little bows to some of the chairs.

Fun fact: Your ASB card does a very poor job at cutting the fabric. Don’t ask me how I know of this. . .

After that we had to add some lights and fake ivy vines and flowers everywhere, had some light bulbs break. . .but anyways. We placed these really cute red rose vines everywhere, but we had to take them down because “they didn’t fit in” with the rest of the decorations.

I spoke with Reese Illston and Kayla Strandberg and I asked them some questions that dealt with organizing Prom and their thoughts about them.

Reese Illston – Prom Interview

1. So who came up with the theme? What were the other themes? How did they choose it? 

The theme of prom this year was enchanted forest. The idea was for the dance to look very whimsical with all the greenery with a nice touch of twinkle in the lights. I give Kayla Strandberg credit for this theme because she came up with the idea and pursued it very well. Other theme ideas included Hollywood, movie genres, and other small considerations. However, enchanted forest was our first option from the get-go. 

2. How long has the planning for prom been going on? (Before, of course, the 30th)

Prom planning started all the day back in February of this year. Deciding on a date and a venue had to be booked far in advance, so that is the main reason why planning starts 3 months early! 

3. Who did you work with?

I worked with the other Junior Class officers to put this together. These individuals included Kayla Strandberg, Claire Schnabel, and Kellen Murphy. Kayla was in charge of basically all the decorations, Claire organized all the chaperones that were at the dance, and Kellen provided a DJ for the night! We made for a great team. 

4. What was it like, organizing a big event?

Planning a big event like this can be challenging. Prom is considered to be one of the highlights of high school to some people, so being in charge of it can bring a bit of pressure to make it live up to expectation. However, the end result completely outweighed the stress that was brought while planning prom. Another thing worth mentioning is that there are so many little things that go into planning a big event, so paying close attention to all the little logistical details is huge. 

5. What was your favorite part of the prom?

My favorite part of prom is being around all your friends for the night while feeling super put together at the same time. Being in an environment where everyone feels confident in what they are wearing brings me so much joy. Prom is such a great time to express yourself in a way that you can’t on a normal day at school, whether it be through wearing a fancy dress, dancing, or even just seeing everyone in such a good mood for the day. 

6. What was your least favorite part of it?

My least favorite part of prom is the initial panic that almost every girl feels when they don’t have a date to prom. In hindsight, everything all works out the way it should, and sometimes it works out even better to not have a date.

7. Dances always have that one song that gets the whole crowd going, you know? What song was playing at the dance that got everyone going? (If you can only remember the lyrics, that’s perfectly fine!)

I am a big fan of Timber by Pitbull and Only Girl in the World by Rihanna. It is always the songs that everyone is able to jump to that get the crowd the most riled up. 

Kayla Strandberg – Prom Interview

1. So who came up with the theme? What were the other themes? How did they choose it? 

The other Junior Class Officers and I were trying to brainstorm some ideas. We threw out enchanted forest but we wanted to get the school’s input. So I sent out a google form asking for recommendations. Quite a few people responded with enchanted forest. Some other responses included… masquerade, old Hollywood, or no theme at all. We decided to go with enchanted forest because it matched the venue the best.

2. How long has the planning for prom been going on? (Before, of course, the 30th)

We had about a month or so to plan prom. Usually more time is given but it took a while to get the ball rolling. It is really hard to find a date that doesn’t conflict with too many sports or clubs.

3. Who did you work with?

I mostly worked with Reese Illton. Other key people on the prom planning committee were Claire Schnabel, Kellen Murphy, and Mrs. Fank. There was also a ton of help from volunteers. Both parents and students. Their help was very appreciated!

4. What was it like, organizing a big event?

It was quite challenging. The hardest part was all the moving parts. You have to make sure you have a DJ and a venue before you order too many decorations but you also have to order the decor ealy enough so it all comes on time. Decorating was my main responsibility. Trying to make the venue look like my pinterest board was very difficult. I had really high expectations.

5. What was your favorite part of the prom?

My favorite part of prom was the outdoor tables. Not only were these cute but they were also very practical. They allowed air flow into the building and let people cool off.

6. What was your least favorite part of it?

The venue was way smaller than I thought it would be. The building was packed and this made it stressful for some people. In the future a bigger venue is needed.

I asked Kayla some follow up questions for number 6, and these were her responses.

Kayla Strandberg – Prom Interview – FOLLOW UP QUESTIONS

1. Do you think that if your team could have expanded the bathroom areas to fill the rooms (besides the bathroom, of course), would it be better?

I think the bathroom area was too separated from the rest of the venue. There wouldn’t have been anything we could put back there. All we needed was a bigger dancing space

2. Same with outside: do you think it would be better if the area where the tables were expanded (same number of tables, larger area)?

My dad built the fence for the outside area which was awesome. I really liked how it looked. In retrospect, it could have been bigger and we could have had more tables but I honestly had no idea there would be so many people. A lot of students brought dates from other schools which increased the number of people significantly.

3. If you could do this again, like same theme and same people, same date, same decorations, etc, would you choose a different place? Where? If not, why?

Wisteria Gardens was our other option but they were not available for that day. That venue is much bigger but it is also farther out of town, so I guess it is a trade off. In the future I definitely recommend a bigger venue to those that are planning prom. Although the Depot was nice because it matched our theme with all the woodwork inside.

Overall, it sounds like Prom was a hit! I cannot believe I actually have to wait till my junior/senior year to go to mine. I can’t wait. But then I can, because of how fast school has gone. . .I wonder what the seniors think of graduating. . .

(Totally didn’t just foreshadow an upcoming article and a new creative story. . .)

Kaylin Frost

--She/Her-- --Junior--

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