Aahh, spring proms! I look at the photo of my senior prom from the early sixties and see a chubette with dark brown hair (I fixed that in college with highlights) and a gap between her two front teeth (fixed that, too), in a strapless white beaded gown (full skirt, bridal-looking). What was I thinking, when I was clearly fifteen pounds overweight?
It was not the greatest night in my memory bank. I was boyfriend-less (wanted to head off to college unattached) and had no prospect for a prom date till two weeks before, when one of my senior "buddies" invited me. He, too, was not part of a pair. In the early sixties, our parents wanted us to start drinking at home, instead of at bars. So the evening began at the home of a classmate, where her parents served cocktails!! I don't remember much about the prom itself (too many cocktails?), except it was under a gigantic tent attached to the front facade of our three-story brick fortress of a high school.
"Grundy" and I didn't spend much time together, except for the picture taking. In an attempt to keep all of us safe, the school administration (public) offered an after-prom party at a banquet facility in town. They probably suspected that we'd been drinking before the prom, since the party was aptly named "Afterglow." Some of the same teachers were chaperones at the Afterglow that we'd seen at the prom. Boring! Our gang made an appearance, then had other plans.
Which were to camp out on town conservation land! We followed each other in a caravan. Yup, we had large tents, flashlights, all the equipment, even food, which we didn't need since we'd been eating all night. Don't know how we didn't get caught? Around 3 a.m. "Grundy" and I couldn't stand to look at each other any longer, and he took me home. So much for a fantasy evening!
Fast-forward to the late eighties. In an attempt to be protective, Charley and I phoned the parents of each son's friend for junior and senior proms. We got permission to have the limos bring the whole gang down to our beach house, over the state line and an hour away from the prom. No kids would be driving, and they'd all be spending the night with Charley and me. Sans liquor. Or so we thought!
The night of younger son's junior prom, the kids arrived as scheduled. They changed and headed to the beach at the end of the road. Older bro and his friends went down for the party, along with sisters and boyfriends over age 21. Guess what they brought?
When the party got too rowdy on the beach, neighbors called the police. There were some juniors who were swift of foot, while others got arrested. Charley and I got the call from the station at 3 a.m.. As did all the parents, an hour away in another state!
We hadn't supplied any liquor, which each kid had to verify to the cops. When Charley arrived at the jail cells, male and female seventeen-year-olds were in tears. By 5 a.m. I was cooking breakfast for the parents and the promgoers. The police wiped everyone's record clean with the promise from the kids to pick up the beach that morning.
Moral of stories: provide a safe place for your kids on prom (or graduation) night, and don't let older sisters or brothers chaperone!
What are your prom night memories??