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April 11, 2007

After Prom planning meetings to be held

by Pia Nargundkar, Online Editor-in-Chief
Organizational meetings will be held through April and May for the After Prom Celebration, which will take place from 1 5 a.m. May 27 at Blair. All parents, staff and students are welcome to attend and help with this year's theme, "Sunny Side Up." The theme focuses on the beach and will be a guide for the decorations that transform the school for the night.



After Prom, an annual event hosted by Blair parents since 1988, is open free of charge to all students who attend prom, and all other juniors and seniors. The celebration is touted as the safe, alcohol and drug-free alternative to unsupervised parties common on prom night. An assortment of activities is offered in the SAC and gym, such as rock climbing, a moon bounce, caricatures and a mock casino complete with roulette, Texas Hold 'Em and others.



In accordance with the "Sunny Side Up" theme, various decorations of sea animals, beach balls, umbrellas and more are being created. Kathy Kircher, a parent of a former Blair student, is in charge of the decorations. Kircher designs everything from scratch and gets other parents to help her with the creations. "She makes amazing decorations that literally transform the Blair hallways, gym and cafeteria into a given theme. It's really amazing," Meer said.



The planning meetings will be held on April 12 and 26 and May 3, 10, 17 and 24 at 7:30 p.m. in the Media Center. In each meeting, any interested volunteers may attend to help create decorations and to discuss a specific topic (such as food or prizes), according to Richelle Meer, a co-chair of the event.



Meer and fellow Blair parents Kate Cook and Edgar Zoz are in charge of the event this year, but many more people are involved. It takes about a hundred volunteers on the day and night of the event alone to help hang up decorations and set up the building, manage the registration for the approximately 500-600 students who arrive, assist in security, run the activities, look after the food and cleanup, according to Meer.



Each year, After Prom costs about $15,000, which is raised a year in advance through fundraising, individual donations, a PTSA grant and a countywide After Prom organization. Yet the After Prom chairs say the work is never done. "We can always use help soliciting donations for prizes and food as well as help with mailings, photocopying and phone calls we never turn down help of any kind," said Meer.



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