For the first time ever, Hauppauge High School celebrated its junior prom off campus, with students dancing the night away at the Hamlet Golf and Country Club in Commack.
In an effort to keep costs down for families, the school had traditionally held its junior prom in the gymnasium, with students helping to decorate. However, this year the faculty and the student council were able to work together to find a different venue without having to break the bank.
“Traditionally we would pick a different theme each year and we would decorate the gymnasium according to that theme,” said principal Christine O’Carroll. “It was wonderful to do that, but it took many, many weeks to plan [and] the preparation took a lot of time.”
Thanks to a series of fundraising efforts spearheaded by the student council, the class of 2019 managed to raise more than $4,000 to offset the cost of holding its prom at the nearby country club. During the past year, students sold concessions at school events, held fundraisers at local restaurants and sold bracelets in an effort to make up for the $10 difference in cost for each student.
Individual students who couldn’t afford the $75 ticket were able to individually raise money through candy and plant sales to pay for their tickets. Students were prohibited from taking limousines in another effort to keep costs low for families.
“I think it’s kind of exciting,” said Antonia Dickson, public relations head of the student council. “When we walked in, it was nice to see our hard work go toward the final product. It looks really beautiful.”
And with the gymnasium currently coping with a broken air conditioning system, both the students and faculty were happy to have this year’s prom somewhere with a few extra amenities.
“I won’t have to sweat in the gym,” said Emmy Casey, vice president of the student council, with a laugh.