Prom night, a memorable event for everyone involved, is almost here


Pam Dudding-Burch
Contributing writer

April is usually the time of the year when high school students, mainly juniors and seniors, get excited about Prom Night. Many consider Prom Night one of the greatest nights pf a teenager’s life.

“It’s the celebration of the impending completion of high school only being a month or so away for the graduating seniors,” said the Craig County Prevention Planning Team (CPPT). “It’s also making memories with close friends, students looking and feeling their best.”

The CPPT team is currently composed of representatives from Blue Ridge Behavioral Healthcare (BRBH), Craig County Public Schools, Monroe Health Center, the Health Department, the Department of Social Services, the Sheriff’s Office, Juvenile Justice, RAYSAC and other leaders in the Craig County Community. Their focus is to build a partnership where all can share their expertise and be a help to local citizens.

Unfortunately, the team also notes that it can also be one of the most dangerous nights of the year for students. The CPPT team recently asked the question, “So, what can be done to make sure that Prom Night is great for everyone?” A combination of responses answered the question.

For teens:

  • Have fun! Dance the night away! “Even if you think you are a bad dancer, get out on the dance floor anyway,” locals shared. “You’ve been looking forward to this night for a while, so make sure you have a great night full of great memories!”
  • Make sure your phone is completely charged before you leave.
  • Be safe!
    • Don’t drink alcohol (or use any other drugs) before, during or after prom.
    • Don’t get into a car with a driver who has been drinking or drugging before, during or after prom.
    • Keep your cell phone nearby in case of an emergency and get help from one of the chaperones if you see anything which could be dangerous. Remember, you may be saving a life!
  • Go to your After Prom. People who care about worked very hard on designing the evening for everyone to have a great time, which includes; interesting activities and usually a few fun surprises, lots of food and more time to make more memories.

For parents:

  • Have a candid conversation with your teen. Make sure you are both on the same page on everything from expectations to things to look out for.
    • Agree on a curfew.
    • Make sure you know who will be driving and who else will be in the car.
    • Make sure your teen knows they can call you in an emergency, such as if the driver of the car they are in drinks alcohol or if they just feel uncomfortable with a situation.
    • ALWAYS let your child know that your number one is their safety.
    • Discuss any concerns your child may have about prom and the many pressures and fears youth have on this special night.
    • Once your child has left, relax and trust your child will make good decisions based on the conversations you’ve had.
    • Watch a movie. Go out for a walk. Being nervous or stressed is normal, but since you don’t have control, it’s better to try to do something that will allow you to be calm.
    • Get some rest so you can be in good shape. Consider volunteering at the After Prom Party. It’s a great way to support your child and the entire community, and it’s a much better way to spend your time than trying to stay awake on the couch until your child gets home!
    • If you don’t volunteer and you can’t stay awake, set the alarm 15 minutes before your teen is supposed to be home and let them know you will be waiting up!

Craig County High School Prom is Saturday, April 14, from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. at the Glenburn Farms in Vinton. The After Prom Party will be at the high school, right after the Prom.

“In the end, Prom Night is supposed to be a great night for everyone – teens, their friends, parents and families,” the CPPT team said. “Let’s make sure this prom is exactly that…a great night for everyone!”