Pirate News: Hart HS postpones prom to Aug. 7 due to COVID-19.

April 13, 2020

Decorations for last year’s HHS prom, which capture the “Cinderella” theme.
– Courtesy photo

Pirate News: Hart HS postpones prom to Aug. 7 due to COVID-19.

Pirate News is a service of Hart Public Schools in cooperation with Oceana County Press.

By Allison Scarbrough, Editor.

HART — Normally this time of year, high school students are readying for prom — the memorable springtime celebration that is an evening of glamour and fun.

Girls are busily making appointments for getting their hair done and picking out that perfect dress. Dinner reservations are being made; guys are getting their tuxedo rentals set up; and students are making arrangements for picking up corsages and boutonnieres from floral shops.

Normally, that is — but not when we’re in the midst of a global pandemic.

Due to the COVID-19 crisis and the state-wide shutdown of school buildings for the remainder of the school year, Hart High School recently rescheduled its prom from Saturday, April 25 to Friday, Aug. 7.

Fortunately, the prom is set to take place at its original location — The Loading Dock in Shelby.

“If we are not able to maintain that date (due to ongoing social distancing restrictions), we would have to cancel and move it to next year,” said Hart High School Principal Brandon Bruce.

“Hopefully, we can still do it,” said Hart High School teacher and prom advisor Amy Weesies. “Maybe we will be able to gather. Otherwise, the reservation will transfer to next year.” The school was able to retain the same DJ as originally planned, too. Sound Waves Next Generation DJ Services agreed to the new August date, Weesies said.

Since it is 2020, the theme for this year’s prom is “The Roaring 20s.”

An advantage to having the prom later in the summer is much warmer weather than what is typically the case in April in Michigan.

Graduation

Plans are still in the works for having a graduation ceremony, Bruce said. After May 1 when restrictions could be lifted, school officials will have a better idea of what is going to happen with graduation, Bruce said.

Both Bruce and Superintendent Mark Platt have verified there will be a graduation ceremony this year, but the specifics of the event have yet to be ironed out.

“We’re not sure what we’re going to do with graduation yet,” Bruce said. “We’re putting that on hold because it depends on when we can reconvene as groups.” It’s possible the school could have an outdoor commencement ceremony after social distancing restrictions are lifted. Bruce said a high school in Michigan is planning to have its graduation ceremony in May — while remaining compliant with social distancing measures. Everyone in attendance will remain in their vehicles, and the graduate will get their diploma when the family drives up in their car to receive it.

European Trip

A 10-day European trip for Hart HS students that Weesies had been planning for mid-June this year has been posted until June 15, 2021.

This will be the third international trip Hart High School students have an opportunity go on since Weesies and Spanish teacher Meghan Scott collaborated on the program six years ago. Previous trips were in Costa Rica in 2014 and Belize in 2018. “It’s getting kids out and seeing the world,” Weesies said.

HHS students in Belize in 2018.
– Courtesy photo

Fundraisers help students and families offset the costs that they pay out-of-pocket for the trip, which entails visiting London, Paris and Barcelona, she said. This year’s travel group would have totaled 36 people, including chaperones and parents. Six seniors were slated to go.

Fortunately, the tourism company involved is allowing seniors to gift the trip to a younger sibling if they are not available to go next year, Weesies said.

Although obviously disappointed, Weesies is relieved the trip has been pushed back due to the idea of traveling “too soon.”

This story is copyrighted © 2020, all rights reserved by Media Group 31, LLC, PO Box 21, Scottville, MI 49454. No portion of this story or images may be reproduced in any way, including print or broadcast, without expressed written consent.

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