On Saturday, April 30, at 8 p.m., Virginia Wesleyan University is hosting its first ever Enchanted Forest themed prom. Many people are ecstatic due to the fact that prom has not been on campus in a long time. This event will feature a DJ, be completely alcohol-free, have formal attire and will allow students to register an off-campus guest.
Junior Hannah Carmona is the brains behind this spring’s prom, and she has all the enthusiasm in the world about students enjoying it. Carmona has been an event supervisor for Off The Hook for two years now and created the idea of having a prom dance at VWU. She has ambitions of making this prom the best yet so it will become a recurring event for years to come.
“I definitely think that Student Activities should keep doing this,” Carmona said. “I hope it turns out really well, and I hope people like it. If they do, then we’ll probably continue to do it.”
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, many students have not experienced prom in awhile if at all. This year’s prom is a brand new opportunity for students to relive an experience they may have never gotten.
“I think that everyone’s reaction about prom is good. Everyone likes the idea of getting a do-over if their’s wasn’t a fun one or if they want to relive it one more time,” junior Kiara Kyle said.
Most high schools only allow their upperclassmen to go to prom, so many students are eager to attend VWU’s.
“I didn’t go to prom in high school; it was for only upperclassmen,” sophomore Ashleigh Lockard said. “My junior year of high school I had a soccer game so I was unable to make it back in time. I was planning on going senior year with some friends, but then COVID happened.”
This year’s prom theme is going to be Enchanted Forest. Students and guests are encouraged to “embrace the fairytale” out on the dance floor.
Along with the Enchanted Forest theme, students are expected to dress for the occasion in formal attire.
“Note that it is formal attire, so long dresses and suits or tuxes,” Carmona said. “I encourage people to go all out, do corsages and stuff like that. [I also] encourage people to ask people to prom too, and send it in to get to win the competition.” Student Activities is prepared to host hundreds of students in their formal attire for an unforgettable experience.
Although there is definitely a positive reaction from the VWU community, there is also a fair share of people who don’t share the same opinion and don’t plan on going.
“I think there are mixed emotions,” Lockard said. “Some are definitely excited to go with friends and dates and to dress up, while others seem to not be in the mood or couldn’t care less about it.”
Some students want to go but are slightly hesitant.
“I feel as though there is a very positive reaction around campus, I may go in a group but I am not 100% sure yet,” junior Stephon Babb said.
Despite the reality that not every student will show up to prom, Carmona is confident that tons of students will go to prom.
“Our Instagram posts for prom got 105 likes, which is one of our records and I’ve been hearing people talk about it and people have questions and everything,” Carmona said.
Prom will also showcase a promposal competition, an idea that was suggested by Ashleigh Lockard.
“I was talking to Ashleigh about it and she was like, ‘Oh, we should do a promposal competition,’ so that’s kind of how the idea started,” Carmona said. This unique competition makes the whole prom experience everlasting as students are encouraged to create their own style poster and idea for asking their date.
“I always enjoyed watching people prompose to each other and thought it was the cutest and sweetest thing. I also know how competitive Marlin Nation is and how we like to win, so I just told Hannah my idea and I guess they liked it,” Lockard said.
Off The Hook will present VWU’s first ever Enchanted Forest Prom on Saturday, April 30, at 8 p.m.. There will be catered food, music, games and a party-like atmosphere in the CMAC.