Grand March and After-Prom, what does 2023 hold for them?

After a vote about what to do with Grand March and After-Prom, the results are in.


Kylin Eads

After two years of the high school’s Grand March being streamed online, parents will once again fill the main gymnasium to see their kids one more time before Prom begins.

Prom 2022 was a new way of doing things, no public Grand March, and After-Prom ran concurrently with Prom. On Wednesday, November 16, 2022, Gibson Southern juniors and seniors gathered in the school’s auditorium to discuss Prom 2023. The dance is currently slated for April 15, 2023, though it was a long way away, the sponsors needed the upperclassmen to make a decision regarding the format for the dance. 

The two teacher class sponsors for Prom, Valerie Zimmer and Kasey Knaebel, told the students present that they needed to take a vote on a couple of important Prom decisions. The first was whether or not Grand March would be in-person. The second regarded the After-Prom party and whether or not it should overlap with Prom itself. Shortly after the meeting, a Google Form was released by the Gibson Southern Office staff to the entire student body. 

“We wanted to know the student perspective on what you guys (students) wanted,” Zimmer said. 

As Prom is now just a little less than three months away, the results are finalized. Grand March, a ceremony where parents get to see their children before the dance, will be in-person and open to the public. For the past two Proms, Grand March has been virtual—a live stream parents could tune in to. Now, it will return to the main gym. 

After-Prom will be held at separate times, after Prom, with a 30-minute period in between where students can change and prepare. Students will not be allowed to change at school. This, and the extra time needed to change, is why some students do not want this to be the case. 

Prom-goers will have the dance in the auxiliary gym, but they will have to wait to attend After-Prom until later that night, with 30 minutes to leave, change and come back. (Kylin Eads)

“[It would be better to have After-Prom as the same time as Prom] so you don’t have to stay at the dance the whole time,” junior Abigail Daisy said. 

Both of these decisions are contrary to the way Prom ran last year, with Grand March being virtual and After-Prom being held before Prom officially ended. A large reason Grand March was not held in person was because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though the pandemic does not pose as much of an immediate threat, some still like the fact that Grand March was virtual, when the school did not have to work around parents before the dance. 

“Parents just bombard,” senior EmmaLee Higgs said. “They are very headstrong. They will make it so much harder to actually get into Prom.”

“From my standpoint of things, it ran a lot smoother when the parents weren’t there,” Zimmer said. “The kids were able to easily transition from Grand March to the dance. When the parents are there, there is a long time that it takes for the parents to cycle out—which makes the dance go longer.”

The two are now separate, which means more time spent at the high school for students attending both. This was the original intent of After-Prom, giving students something to do in a safe environment after the dance.

Along with the other news, a tentative theme has been decided, described by Zimmer as “rustic romance.”

Prom will be held in the auxiliary gym, after Grand March is completed. 

Grand March will start at 7 p.m., with the dance officially beginning when parents leave the school. Prom will end at 11 p.m., after which students have 30 minutes to go home and change, then come back to participate in the After-Prom party until 2 a.m.