UPDATE: Friday, April 13, 2012
On Friday, some area high schools were forced to scramble to change their prom plans after they realized some of their venues weren't equipped to keep students safe during what could be a potentially dangerous storm.
Maize High School junior Spencer Baalman has been making prom plans with his date for almost a month.
"I had to coordinate my tux color with her dress color and we coordinated the corsage and boutonniere," said Baalman.
This is Baalman's second prom. He went last year when the dance was held at the Cotillion, its usual venue. This year, Baalman and his classmates will be dancing the night away in the Maize South Middle School's gym. Principal Mike Bonner say they moved the dance there because it, unlike the Cotillion, has a storm shelter.
"Their FEMA shelter is their small gym, which is very big, and we can fit every single person that might be here tomorrow night into that space," said Bonner.
Baalman's mother says she's glad the school is taking steps to keep her son and other classmates safe.
"I think it will be better. They'll be safer with the shelter and everything. We just need to do what's safe for the kids," said Lisa Baalman.
For now, a small gazebo and a few extra tables are the only signs this gym will soon be prom central. Baalman says as long as they have good music and room to dance, this year's prom will be just as much fun as it would have been at the Cotillion.
"Prom is prom no matter where it's at," said Spencer Baalman.
Bonner says they decided not to reschedule the prom for another date because the students had already rented their tuxedoes and made their plans. They're not alone. Goddard and Valley Center have also moved their proms. Wichita Southeast High School's prom will still be at Beech Activity Center because the venue has a basement.
Friday, April 13, 2012
At least three area schools have moved their proms due to the threat of severe weather Saturday
Valley Center High School will have its prom and after-prom activities at the high school. Prom was originally scheduled to be at Exploration Place in Wichita.
Maize High School will hold its prom at Maize South Middle School. The prom had been scheduled for the Cotillion in Wichita, but that facility does not have a storm shelter.
Goddard will move its prom to the high school. It had been scheduled for the Mid America All Indian Center.
Wichita public schools says one high school is scheduled to hold a prom on Saturday. Southeast High will hold its prom at the Beech Activity Center as scheduled. Officials said the facility has a basement.