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Teen-agers host prom for seniors
Fourth annual Senior Citizen Prom will be held at North Stafford High School on Saturday.

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Date published: 3/6/2002

agers and senior citizens to
socialize in Stafford County are about as numerous as trees along Garrisonville Road.

That's why the Senior Citizen Prom, sponsored by a group of students at North Stafford High School, has become such a popular event since it began four years ago.

This year's prom will be held Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m. in the high school cafeteria.

There is no age distinction for "seniors," according to Kay Vincent, a faculty member at North Stafford and one of the event's organizers.

"Most the guests are from their 50s on up to their 90s," said Vincent. "We're hoping for about 150 people this year. And that would include about 50 students."

Vincent teaches
in the family and consumer sciences department at North Stafford. And she teams with Pam McCluskey to help with the Family, Careers and Community Leaders of America club, which sponsors the prom.

"The club's goal is to strengthen family values through community service," said Vincent. "A lot of the clubs do projects for children. But Pam and I decided to go in another direction and involve senior citizens."

While the event includes all the usual features of a prom--music, dancing, decorations and refreshments--it also allows students a chance to get acquainted with an older generation.

"Most students aren't around older people very often," said Vincent. "Or, if they are, they think older people talk differently or dress differently. And some older people think of teens as being disrespectful.

"I think the proms have broken down some stereotypes on both sides. Everyone seems to have a lot of fun. I know the seniors enjoy talking with the young people, and the students learn to relax and not be intimidated by the seniors."

Music for the event is provided by the North Stafford jazz band and the school chorus--along with CDs when band members take a break. Vincent said there will be lots of music from the 1940s, including swing music and jazz, plus some rock 'n' roll tunes.

Students also prepare refreshments, make corsages and boutonnieres for the guests and decorate the cafeteria.

The Aquia Harbour Host Lions Club and the Stafford Rotary Club contribute money for food and supplies. And local businesses donate items for door prizes.

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