Gone are the days when a high school prom meant a home-made dress, a corsage, and a car borrowed from somebody’s dad. Today’s proms are more like practice weddings – multiple-event extravaganzas designed to spread the fun out as long as possible. According to USA Today, the average couple spends about $1-thousand bucks on the prom. And the hair, clothes, and spray tans are just the beginning.
There are also pre-dance parades, and steak “rehearsal” dinners the night before. As well as fancy rides, like a horse and carriage, limousine, or even a helicopter. Then, students strut their stuff down an Oscar-worthy red carpet before a cheering, picture-taking audience that includes friends, neighbors and parents. Then, after the band has packed up and gone, there’s after-hours entertainment, like hypnotists, lounge acts, and celebrity impersonators. Followed by “after-after” parties, like all-night bowling, followed by an after-prom breakfast. And most of the time, local businesses sponsor the after-parties. Why? To keep kids out of trouble. They figure if every kid’s invited to all the “cool parties,” they’ll be less likely to throw their own rowdy, hotel-suite soirees. Here are a few prom-related events from around the country:
- Last year in Palmyra, New Jersey, students attended a free roller skating and soccer party until 4:00 a.m., before heading home with prizes.
- At Big Horn High School in Wyoming, students have a pre-prom “grand march”. Basically, a parade where students are presented to the town, along with biographical tidbits like whether they used teeth whitening strips to prepare for the party.
- And in Gates Mill, Ohio, the planning for complicated after-prom celebrations starts at the beginning of the school year. A recent extravaganza included a dance at the Cleveland Browns Stadium, dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, and prizes like TVs and tickets to Browns games.