The Perfect Prom

Seniors celebrate one final time


Held in a deep, mystical forest in Warren, New Jersey was this year’s senior prom for the class of 2021. The venue, the Forest Lodge, was selected for an outdoor prom because of its airy ambience and lovely picture-taking environments–all enhanced with decorations prepared for and set up by underclass student council members.  

But, senior attendees were less concerned with the location and decorations and more interested in the opportunity to finish their senior year as would normally be expected.

When prom was first suggested by the Class of 2021 student council, the board had a difficult time putting together such an event due to unexpected circumstances such as Covid restrictions: mask wearing, social distancing, contamination of food and objects and other health priorities. Prom traditions that compromise social distancing such as dancing and picture-taking were feared, but as planning progressed, New Jersey rapidly adapted to a growing, vaccinated social culture.  Still, prom did require some transitioning from students who largely spent the year in remote instruction.  

“I almost felt like I forgot how to socialize with all these people who were once my classmates,” said Tanya Sharma ‘21, “but it was definitely a refreshing experience to end my senior year with and it kills me how prom not occurring was a possibility this year.”

For some seniors, prom was the first time they had seen most of their classmates and peers altogether in one place since March of the previous year. 

As Sharma indicated, social interaction and seeing people who had no contact with each other all year may have been nerve wracking at first, but once students started to mingle and communicate with each other, reconnecting with previous peers appeared both beneficial and necessary, and made the prom event feel more like an overdue class reunion than an annual social gathering. 

The novel nature of prom this year was worth remembering…

Therefore, not only was this year’s prom important in the lives of seniors who got to witness this unique prom in a pandemic, but it was also symbolic as to the ability of a community to collaborate and compromise in order to have an event, honoring and giving graduating seniors a lifetime experience they won’t forget despite some initial reservations about restricted attendance, like seniors-only and EHS-students only.  

“[Prom was] a nice send-off by meeting everybody for the second-to-last time right before graduation,” Shreya Manchanda ‘21 said. 

“It made the experience more memorable and especially since there weren’t a lot of junior/senior events. Prom really was the proper senior-send off and encapsulated the overall high school experience,” said Rishab Gera ‘21. 

Prom trends this year were just as different as the circumstances surrounding the event. Red and green dresses were two popular colors amongst this year’s seniors, with senior girls adorning gowns of different styles and materials. Silk slit dresses were also a common occurrence at this year’s biggest social event. However, there were many distinctive outfits as well such as pantsuits, ball gowns, floral and all-white tuxedos, as well as wigs. These choices not only demonstrated creativity but allowed seniors to express themselves after a whole year of working and socializing within the boundaries of online schooling. 

The novel nature of prom this year was worth remembering, not because of the actual events that occurred at the venue, but because of the symbolic aspects which allowed prom this year, such as teamwork, dedication, community bonding, friendship and, of course, celebrating the final time that seniors of EHS look back and reminisce on their chaotic yet cherished memories here at Edison High School.  

“All the students were so happy to see each other and many memories were made,” said Mr. Michael Piccolo, business teacher and advisor of Class of 2021.