For the first time in a long time, seniors at Patchogue-Medford High School were able to gather together to celebrate with their friends during the prom, hosted on Main Street in Patchogue on Monday, June 21. Seniors this year did not come into 12th grade expecting anything. Most of them did not expect to have a prom at all, after the 2020 school year was cut short due to the pandemic. In spite of this, the students expressed their joy at experiencing a prom like no other.
According to senior Juliette DeNeve, “I’ve been to proms before and they are usually identical, but this is nothing I’ve ever seen before. When I found out that prom was happening, I got goosebumps; it seemed too good to be true.”
The plan was “very original,” said graduating junior Christina Calaitges. The prom gave her and many others the opportunity to “see people I haven’t been able to see in a long time.”
Another senior, Ellie Hart, said, “I was not expecting a prom... This is the first thing we’ve been able to do after the pandemic during reopening. It has been beyond amazing. It is great being able to see everyone.”
Fellow classmate Bronwyn Pashoukos said of the prom, “I was surprised when it was announced. I am looking forward to being on Main Street sitting with everyone.”
According to senior Kandice Aragon, one thing she said she’d remember about the night is “seeing old friends I haven’t seen since a year and a half ago.”
For some, it was jarring to see other students without masks again, returning to a sense of normalcy that no longer seems normal. Regardless, after the year of isolation and uncertainty, life is moving forward for them. They can celebrate, when celebration has been rare, and they can be together during their last week of high school, and that moment is one they will remember forever.