By RONDA GREGORY
News & Journal Staff Writer
After a two-year absence, Lincoln High School’s popular Prom Fashion Show was on again and received rave reviews.
Because of instruction days lost as snow days, the ten-year-running event, sponsored by the Key Club, had not taken place for two years. Students who helped plan and organize last week’s event say all were happy the school was presenting it again.
“We were really glad to bring it back this year,” said junior Shelby Swiger, who was the main coordinator.
Mackenzie Hawkins, a junior who heads up media promotions for the Key Club, agreed. “It had always been a big thing that the students loved.”
And the proceeds – more than $1,000 – went to a great cause.
“This year the money was raised to benefit Sheyenne E. Thomas, the granddaughter of one of our teacher’s aides, Betsy Phillips,” reports Lincoln’s special education teacher Mary Matheny, who, along with librarian Lisa DeMarco, co-advise the Key Club. “The money we’ve raised with the Prom Fashion Shows has always gone to someone in need in our community. This year we were pleased it could help one of our own.”
Hawkins echoed the sentiment: “It certainly is important that the money helps someone, and having it go to Sheyenne, it kind of brings everything home.”
Sheyenne, a third grader at Big Elm Elementary, has a chronic lung disease. The money the students raised will help offset some of her medical costs.
The event decor was festooned in a gold-black-and-maroon color scheme, reported junior Darian Darway, who was in charge of stage design. “Those will be the colors of the prom this year, so we used them in decorating for the show,” she explained. “But we didn’t want to overshadow the actual prom, so we kept it kind of simple…just to give a taste of what the prom is going to be like.”
The Prom Fashion Show featured the latest in prom couture donated from local shops with items from Oliverio’s Bridal, The House of Fashions, Queen’s Choice, Lavish and My Tailor Shop, Swigerstated.
“The dresses we got were what are in style,” she added. “All of the girls really fell in love with their dress [to model]. It showed the student body the latest styles for this [prom] season.”
Models were Key Club juniors and seniors chosen based on what kind of and how many volunteer projects they did throughout the year, Swiger said.
In addition to the expected prom dresses, sophomores and freshmen had the privileged fun of modeling a not-so-expected segment of the show – the Garbage Bag Collection. They made their own creations with, yes, garbage bags, duct tape and newspaper.
uld be amazed at the garbage bag dresses!” exclaimed Matheny. “They were unbelievable! You couldn’t tell they were garbage bags. And the tuxedos were amazing too.”
Swiger said the models (regarding making their unique and quirky outfits) got “full range to do whatever they wanted to do.”
Parris Parsons was named Garbage Bag Dress Queen with her dress made of all Target bags, layered tulle-like, with a long train in back.
Swiger reports the tuxes were quite interesting, too. “We just had all different colors. Some had shorts instead long pants, so that was very different. And some had bow ties, and others had regular ties.”
In an effort to inject even more fun into the already enjoyable show…while at the same time learning about prom fashions from the past…the group presented a slideshow featuring their teachers’ prom pics.
Junior Kendal DeMarco created this entertaining PowerPoint presentation.
“We got about 20 photos from our teachers and other employees from their proms,” DeMarco noted. “It was cool and was fun to see what they looked like in high school. It was fun to see how times have changed over the years.”
DeMarco said it was also especially interesting to contrast the photos of their older teachers with those who are more recent to the profession. She said the older prom dresses were more “casual” while those of the younger teachers were more like “ball gowns”.
She said everyone really enjoyed the slideshow. “It went over well with the kids. It was definitely a crowd-pleaser.”
The fashion show itself began and ended with a couple of bangs of Broadway-style entertainment, featuring music and dancing numbers.
Hawkins, who was in charge of these portions of the show, stated that the audience seemed to get into it. “They were smiling and applauding,” she said.
She reports the opening song that kicked off the show was “We’re All in This Together” from the movie “High School”. “And after the show we all came back on stage for a finale to Justin Bieber’s ‘What Do You Mean?’” said Hawkins. “We chose that song because it’s popular now, so kids knew it. And we danced a line dance.”
Matheny said she and DeMarco are very pleased and proud the Key Club members did such a successful job organizing and presenting the show. “These girls worked really hard–from getting nearly 40 prize donations to actually putting on the show,” they agreed.
They garnered support for door prizes and gift cards from nail salons, spas, beauty salons, tanning centers and many other local businesses to help make the show a success.
Hanna Stoper, a junior who helped to get the many donations, stated, “Having the gift cards and other prizes helped motivate the students to attend the show. Not only did they get to see the great dresses, but they also got a chance to win something.”
Stoper added that they appreciated that so many in the community would give so generously. “It was good to see that a lot of people were willing to donate so many things to help out when they didn’t even know her [Sheyenne] personally.”
Swiger agreed, saying, “It was really great to have such community support.”
Sheyenne was their special guest at the show. “She had a front-row seat and clapped and clapped,” recounted Hawkins. “She seemed to really enjoy it and was excited to meet us [the models and Key Club organizers] after the show.”
Hawkins said the privilege was all theirs to be able to meet little Sheyenne and to give her some smiles and some real help.