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The student news site of Amador Valley High School


The student news site of Amador Valley High School


The student news site of Amador Valley High School


An Enchanted Evening at the Academy: Junior Prom 2024

Ian Cha
The 2024 Junior Prom took place at the California Academy of Science in San Francisco.

Juniors at Amador Valley High School were treated to an unforgettable night at this year’s Junior Prom. The dance took place on Saturday, March 2nd, at the California Academy of Sciences, a science museum in San Francisco.

The event received almost ubiquitous approval from the attendees. Students praised everything — from the copious seating space to the captivating atmosphere.

“I’m really grateful to have been able to attend prom with my friends, it was an incredible event. I still can’t believe leadership secured such a great venue,” said Filipp Dmitriev (‘25).

The life of the event was the dance floor, complete with a DJ and bright stage lighting. Students complimented the music selection, a rare commendation from the picky audience.

“Even though my tie disappeared in it, the mosh pit was some of the most fun I’ve ever had,” said Kaustubh Lole (‘25).

The museum exhibits were open for the event, so students had a lot to explore and see. (Ian Cha)

Aside from the dance floor, students also explored the museum’s exhibits. From spectacles of colors in nature, to an underground aquarium, there was no shortage of entertainment for prom-goers.

“The venue offered so many photo opportunities, like the stunning aquarium. There was also so much to see and do because it was a museum” said Mila Kalezić (‘25).

Of course, no event is complete without good food, and the prom-planners went above and beyond this year. Students enjoyed a variety of crêpes, tacos, mac and cheese, and ice cream, all free of charge.

“My friend Luming had 5 servings of tacos. I really liked the crêpes and I was thrilled to see how much variety they had there,” said Brayden Yin (‘25).

Behind the Scenes

Leadership commenced their meticulous preparations well over a year in advance. Incredibly, the entire event was masterminded by just four individuals. Addison Cummings (‘25), Ariana Luan (‘25), Ellie Kim (‘25), and Kaitlin Burleson (‘25) made up the whole prom committee.

“It started sophomore year when we had to pick the venue. Usually prom is in Oakland, but we really wanted it to be this big event because we had the funds for it,” said Luan.

The planners chose the Academy of Sciences for its wide open floor and entertainment options. 

“Usually you have to get casino games and stuff to have things for people to do other than dance. But the Academy was all built-in, with all the exhibits and the crocodile and the aquarium. It was such a good photo opportunity and then people could have a relaxing moment there,” said Luan

Of course, the logistics of organizing a school-wide, off-campus event can be overwhelming, to say the least. And Amador Valley High School enrolls almost 700 juniors. 

“Especially when we got close to the event, we were sending like five emails a day. We need the buses to come here on time, we need shoppers here by this time, and we had to have planned out lists for everyone involved because there’s so many moving parts to it,” said Burleson.

To help maintain order, leadership enlisted the help of dozens of teacher chaperones. The teachers kept track of the hundreds of students to make sure no one was left behind at the school— or the museum, for that matter.

“Students were pretty well behaved. I thought it was fun to walk around and chat with students early in the evening. I liked walking through all the exhibits and getting to see kids just hanging out,” said Social Studies Teacher Delise Anderson.

Students were transported to prom on lines of buses. Each student received a wristband that corresponds to their bus, and chaperones kept meticulous records of attendance.

“There are so many things that people don’t see. We had to make all the bus contracts, we had to make the checklist for the chaperones, we labeled every single wristband, we kept track of ticket sales week by week. It’s our job to make sure that people have a good time and they don’t have to worry about that kind of stuff,” said Luan.

There was a wider variety of food at prom this year, and students could grab what they liked as the night went on. (Anjali Bemarkar)

Last year’s prom activities received mixed reviews, and many attendees criticized the food and music. This year, the committee went the extra mile to exceed student expectations.

“I’m glad that people enjoyed the tacos, and they enjoyed the ice cream. And they were all like, ‘The DJ was pretty good, and the mosh was, too.’ I’m just glad that everyone was happy with it,” said Luan.

As the event finally drew to a close, the four committee members were finally able to breathe a sigh of relief and accomplishment. 

“I think we came pretty close to having it go as well as it could have gone. We were worried that a lot of people might have problems with it. The fact that so many people enjoyed it and said it was one of the best proms is such a good feeling to have after planning it for almost a year,” said Kim.

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