Amid Pandemic, Strange New Proms Go on

High schoolers are finding ways to have their milestone in isolation
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 27, 2020 12:03 AM CDT
Amid Pandemic, Prom Goes Online
This photo shows high school seniors who attended a virtual prom via Zoom on April 16 hosted by the Baton Rouge Youth Coalition. With the Class of 2020 missing out on so many traditions due to the coronavirus pandemic, many have gone online to participate in virtual proms.   (Baton Rouge Youth Coalition via AP)

In party dresses or come as you are, with colored lights flashing in their bedrooms and teachers-turned-DJs spinning, high schoolers have turned to virtual proms to salvage at least one slice of fun and tradition for the Class of 2020. And they’re getting help from familiar brands like Teen Vogue and Jack in the Box, with both serving as hosts to thousands of teens, the AP reports. Celebrities, too, are taking on prom: Get Out actress Allison Williams was a guest DJ for Zoom partygoers in Baton Rouge, La., and Jack Ryan star John Krasinski was joined by Billie Eilish when he threw a prom live on YouTube. “It's terrible that it's happening to your class, but I hope you're having a good time anyway," Williams told about 100 teens, staff, and guests April 16 at the prom hosted by the Baton Rouge Youth Coalition, an after-school program.

Alauna Stults, 17, in Findlay, Ohio, will wear a blue bedazzled two-piece outfit when she attends an online prom May 9 thrown by the party apparel rental service Charlotte's Closet and an event planning site, My School Dance. Charlotte's Closet is donating dresses to teens in need, including Alauna. High schools and cheer teams have thrown virtual proms of their own as social media has filled up with sweet moments among families. Dads have taken their dressed-up daughters for living room spins for a dance or two, and teens have organized home proms among parents and siblings. Teen Vogue expects about 5,000 teens to attend its virtual prom May 16 on Zoom, and Jack in the Box is working with schools in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Houston to put on a prom in May, complete with free food and delivery codes. (Much more on the virtual prom phenomenon here.)

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