With the Sweetheart dance approaching Feb. 20, students attending the dance are beginning to get ready for the evening. Planning for the dance requires more than simply choosing an outfit – it requires coordination of when and where the group will be taking pictures, eating dinner and going for the after party.
Seniors Lauren McGrew and Joey Mitchell will attend the Sweetheart dance in the same group this year.
McGrew said she begins to think about who she wants to ask and how around two weeks prior to the dance. More often than not, people will also put a good deal of effort and time into how a person will ask their date to the dance.
“Usually, I just start to think of a few people who I would like to (go to the dance with),” McGrew said. “I ask my friends what ideas would be a good (way) to ask a certain person. It depends on who I’m asking and what their interests are.”
To decide where the group will take pictures, eat dinner and go for the after party, McGrew said people typically make group messages to organize things. She said her group usually decides on a restaurant a week in advance for reservations and whoever volunteers will commonly host the after party.
McGrew said preparing for the dance for girls is often a day-long process.
“Usually, I’ll go get my nails done in the morning,” McGrew said. “Then I’ll have all of my friends do my hair and makeup and it’s basically a whole day process.”
On the other hand, Mitchell said preparing for the dance only takes a couple hours.
“Usually I iron my shirt, make sure my suit is pressed,” Mitchell said. “I take a shower. I get all my stuff for the after party ready. I get my car cleaned out so it’s not gross when I drive people.”
The two seniors said that they usually spend roughly 30 to 45 minutes at the actual Sweetheart dance. Mitchell said the group will not stay long at the dance because of school’s new lighting system and will head to the after-party afterwards.
“With the renovation that (the school) did, there’s one out of the four lights that they can’t turn off on every little square,” Mitchell said. “So it’s really bright in there and it’s kind of awkward…so nobody stays for very long anymore.”
According to the two seniors, the after party is one of the night’s best moments simply because all their friends are together in a more relaxed and fun setting.
As a senior, Mitchell said he has been to a lot of school dances and has had his fair share of good and bad experiences.
“One time I got asked to a dance by a girl who I had said a total of 10 words to, maybe,” Mitchell said. “That was really awkward because we didn’t know each other at all. It wasn’t that bad, it was just really weird, like, ‘Why did she ask me?’”
McGrew said that, by the end of the night, girls will not be as flustered as guys think from all the preparations for the night of the dance, and will still have a fun time the night of the dance.
On the other hand, Mitchell said guys worry a lot less about the planning and as a result have a much better time.
“Even for Homecoming, when the guys are supposed to plan it, the girls always end up planning it,” Mitchell said. “They’re always freaked out about their dress and their heels and all the girl drama stuff.”