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What's Up Magazine

Lori, Desiree, and Patrick's Prom Memories

Mar 07, 2011 10:39PM ● By Anonymous

Prom Traditions and Memories

What’s Up? Magazine asked several adults for their prom memories.  Here are some of their comments.

Lori Phelan attended Southern High School as a member of the Class of 1976.  She went to proms her junior and senior years.  She attended the first prom with a senior who had broken his collarbone during a lacrosse championship earlier in the day.  The prom was held in the ballroom of what was then the Hilton, now known as the Marriott Waterfront Hotel. The balcony had a swimming pool in it.  “. I wore a silky blue printed gown. Dinner was served there. He wore a powder blue tux and looked like Prince Charming - but on painkillers. For my senior prom, I wore a powder blue dress which was very hot for its day -- think Jennie Lind. He wore a white tux with tails. It was held in Lanham. We left early and hung out in downtown Annapolis before heading off to Ocean City and staying up all night - the tradition of the day.”

Thirty years later, her oldest child, Allison, now a 2006 graduate of Mt. DeSales Academy in Catonsville, attended her senior prom.  Son Craig, currently attending the US Air Force Academy, is a member of Severn School’s Class of 2009.

“Both of my kids had afterprom school held/planned events with co-ed sleepovers after that. Pre-prom cocktail parties were held for large groupings. I don't remember that happening for me back in the day,” said Lori.  She explained how the 2009 sleepover worked.  “A dozen kids came back from Severn (where the after party was) around 2 a.m. - half boys, half girls. They had already changed into sweats at school. They pretty much all fell asleep sitting up.”  The chaperones didn’t fall asleep until the teens had zonked out.  “The deal was I took keys, no one was to leave before breakfast, no alcohol and I had spoken to all parents. It was a very tame event but so much fun! Someone from Severna Park High School stopped in the morning on his way home from another sleepover. He woke us all up. I made pancakes and we all hung out for another couple hours.”

“So much fun!” Lori enthused.

MORE High School Prom Memories

Annapolis resident, artist Desiree Holmes Scherini never attended a prom or homecoming dance.  “I was asked once, in ninth grade, by a senior,” she said.  “I said ‘No’ because he ‘liked’ me more that I ‘liked’ him.”  Desiree didn't want to deal with the “goodnight kiss thing!”  She eventually married a Naval Academy graduate, though she did not attend the fabled Ring Dance until 2004.  She laughed: “I made up for not going to the prom later with all the military balls.  I have a closet full of formal gowns still. I should throw a formal party."

The principal of Severna Park High School, Patrick Bathras, is a member of Old Mill High School’s Class of 1988.  His senior prom was held at Martin’s West in Windsor Mill, complete with a sit-down dinner.  Afterwards, they headed over to the high school for a prom breakfast in the Old Mill cafeteria.  Patrick wore a white tuxedo accented with pink; his date wore a white and pink gown.  “Some students rented limos, some drove their dates,” he remembered.  “I drove my date to the prom.  The prom theme song was ‘I’ve Had the Time of My Life.’”

It was the closing, deeply romantic song in the movie “Dirty Dancing” starring the late Patrick Swayze.