Salia Hovanec and her date, Joshua Friedman, took to the red carpet wearing shades, but quickly threw them off for pictures as they headed inside a castle to celebrate prom.
“Hey, it was a good call because it was so bright with the flashing cameras and bright lights,” said Hovanec, 17. “The red carpet was ridiculous. So glamorous. It was perfect.”
They were among the nearly 300 seniors from Paul D. Schreiber Senior High School to arrive by limo, car or bus and walk the red carpet while hundreds of parents and friends sitting on bleachers snapped pictures and cheered.
Lisa Lipstein and her husband Keith, along with the rest of their family, sat in the front row of the bleachers so they could cheer on their 17-year-old daughter Emily, as she passed by.
“It was such a long day with graduation early this morning and getting ready for prom, but now she can enjoy herself,” Lisa Lipstein said. “It’s a milestone for her. This is her night.”
Through fundraising, the prom has been held at the Sands Point Preserve in Port Washington for nearly 20 years as an annual party gift for graduates from their parents.
Hovanec and her date entered the castle noticing the chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, the walls covered with framed pictures of the senior class, and a dance floor that looked like it was beneath the stars.
“This is so exciting, yet so bizarre that it’s finally here,” Hovanec said before running off to to choose between dancing or grabbing a bite to eat at the buffet. “We’re going to have a blast tonight.”
Katie Ferrero started her evening by sitting down to play blackjack inside the gambling tent. She was given 20 fake $100 bills to gamble with, but after she misplaced it her friend gave her “$1,000.” They were able to win prizes such as gift cards, a Kindle or wireless speakers.
“I’m winning. I won blackjack three times in a row,” said Ferrero, 18. “I was so nervous that I even told my date to catch me if I tripped on the red carpet, but it turned out to be a great night so far and I’m really having fun. This is a great way to end high school.”