Tightened rules light up homecoming dance


Photo Credit: Trevor LaVine

Students milling about at the Suncoming dance, held on Oct. 25, 2014. Boasting a Hawaiian theme, the dance was in many ways a departure from previous years. Stricter dress codes and a highly enforced drug and alcohol policy ensured that students acted in accordance to contracts signed before the dance. A surge in ticket sales days before the dance helped the student council recoup its expenses.

by Trevor LaVine, Online Editor-in-Chief

This year’s homecoming dance took place from 7:00pm to 10:30pm, despite fears that both low attendance and the events of last year’s dance would cancel the festivities.

Last Saturday, Oct. 25, the Hawaiian themed event took place in the school cafeteria. Called “Suncoming,” the dance was in jeopardy because initially too few people signed up.

However, a last minute rush of signups ensured that the Glen Rock Homecoming dance would again go on. In all, more than 200 people signed up, enough for the dance to break even and cover its expenses.

After the controversial homecoming dance of 2013, it came as no surprise that rules were tightened. Including the decision to make the event semi-formal, several other amendments were made.

“We tried to make some changes, we had some new advisors, and they added some new things,” school principal John Arlotta said. Changes included stipulations that all of the lights in the cafeteria would be turned on, the dress code would be strictly enforced, and students would not be allowed to dance in tight groups (defined as one that a chaperone could not pass through).

However, by the time the dance was half over almost all of the lights had been turned off, and the students had gravitated into a traditional cluster.

“It went well. It was successful, and the student council officers worked hard to put everything together,” said Katherine Benin, the student council adviser.

The cafeteria was decorated with various tropical elements, such as inflatable palm trees and beach balls, and many of the students were wearing floral attire. The attendees, however, had mixed feelings about the dance.

“The dance was a bit more supervised than last year,” Ryan Vandervalk (’15) said.

Clusters of dancing students were frequently interrupted as both teacher and administrator chaperones pushed through, looking to enforce the rules. Several police officers were also present.

“I had more fun at a Bar Mitzvah,” Meaghan Trentham, a junior, said.

Many others agreed that the tightened supervision and lack of darkness had an impact on the mood.

“I don’t even know what to say,” Brendan Trahan (’15) told The Glen Echo. “It wasn’t fun because everyone was too serious.”

Despite the lack of enthusiasm from students, there were no reported drug or alcohol incidents this year.