Stanly seniors enjoy ‘Starry Night Senior Prom’

Published 3:09 pm Wednesday, October 25, 2023

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By Jessica Covington, for the SNAP

Whether it was 10 years or 50 years ago, many people remember their senior prom. The excitement of asking or being asked, picking out outfits and preparing for a night out with friends is something that often is a defining moment in one’s high school career.

Stanly County Senior Center decided that was a memory worth repeating, and recently hosted “A Starry Night Senior Prom” for the seniors in Stanly County.

The attendees were decked out in their finest and definitely came ready to dance and reminisce. The room was filled with laughter and stories about the differences between this prom and the ones attended in high school.

“I didn’t even get asked,” Marie Smith said of her first senior prom. “I just remember I wanted to go with somebody. Well, this time I did.”

Marie Smith and Tom Curry enjoy dancing at “A Starry Night Senior Prom.” (Photo by JESSICA COVINGTON)

Marie’s date for the evening was Tom Curry, a man she met at another social dance several weeks ago.

Tom laughed as he remembered the way Marie invited him.

“We were out on the dance floor and she said she needed a date, and I said you found one.”

The two made a striking pair cutting a path through the other couples, Marie’s blue dress twirling around their stomping feet.

Another pair who came together were sisters Lesa Brock and Nancy Dubose. Nancy bought Lesa a corsage to wear in memory of her late husband, and the two sisters fondly remembered a prom they attended together years ago.

Lesa Brock, left, attended the event with her sister, Nancy Dubose. (Photo by JESSICA COVINGTON)

“I remember our mother made our dresses,” Lesa shared. “We went and had the best time.”

Senior Center board member Penny Bates spoke of the reason for having the prom.

“You see how they’re all dressed up and look nice? We don’t get to do that a lot. Sometimes we just want somewhere to go that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg where we can just have fun,” she said.

And have fun they did. Near the end of the night the group crowned their prom king and queen.

When Barbara Starnes was announced as their queen, the cheers and applause shook the disco ball fixed to the ceiling. John Olivieri joined her as prom king, and the two shared a dance together.

Afterwards, Barbara fondly recalled her first prom.

“I went with my husband. We got married at 16 and so we went together.”

She remembered her class being small, only 17 people, so it was a close group.

“I didn’t expect this at all,” she said in reference to being crowned queen. “I am just so happy and honored.”

Overall, there was a resounding agreement that this prom trumped all the ones before. All the attendees could agree that it was an evening to remember.

Jessica Covington is a freelance writer for The Stanly News & Press.