By Mariat Thankachan
As exam week twirls around the corner with the daunting thought of finals, MSMS students donned formal attire on December 2 to mark the 2017 Winter Formal.
The Saturday night event in Hogarth Auditorium served as a chance for the students to bring out their high heels and polished shoes onto the floor, where all forms of dance moves showed off the manner in which MSMS students take advantage of a magical moment to relieve stress and enjoy valuable time with friends.
Highlighting the dance’s theme of Winter Wonderland, the Winter Formal Organization Committee placed effort into ensuring that the night was conducted with perfect care and detail, spreading the joys of a winter spirit.
Junior Kailah Ware, member of the organization committee, describes the role the group played to host the event.
“We helped decorate the dining area, set up the buffet, decorate the dance floor, and decide the music. It was nice watching everything unfold and seeing everyone have fun throughout the night,” Ware said.
The layout of the event featured numerous booths for taking photos adorned with winter-related backdrops, a counter for ticket pick-ups and ballot submissions for Winter Formal Court voting, and a downstairs area for a scrumptious buffet. The primary contributors of the food served were the parents of MSMS students.
As a professional DJ presented an array of variety tracks from recent pop songs to golden oldies, the energy of the students exuded their enthusiasm. In preparation for the dance, a ballroom dancing seminar was held days prior to the event. Over 80 students attended the seminar, where step-by-step instructions were given on how to dance the waltz and foxtrot with a partner. These songs were played at Winter Formal for the students to reveal their new-found dancing skills.
Others selected to learn dance moves from television shows. Junior Madison Wypyski learned her jumps from “The Wiggles,” an Australian children’s television show from the ‘90’s.
Wypyski added thoughts on taking part in her first Winter Formal, “At my old school, all we had was homecoming and I wasn’t old enough to go to prom, so that was always like a big to-do. Not having homecoming here was kind of sad, but I definitely think that Winter Formal made up for that and went beyond. It was really fun, everyone was excited, it was gorgeous in there. Definitely the dance floor was my favorite part, it was bouncing.”
The Formal serves as a significant tradition at MSMS, one where juniors experience the life of fancy dances for the first time, and seniors share memorable moments before their last semester of high school with friends who have become family.
Senior David Thagard arrived at the dance with his group of best friends. Thaggard commented that he enjoyed the music, food and dance from this year’s event, but his time with friends was precious and unique.
“It was one of the most memorable nights so far at MSMS, not only because of the dance, but because Daniel, Tate, Cody and I all wore the craziest suits we could find. I would not have wanted to spend it with any other people,” Thaggard stated.
Thaggard and his friends wore creative suits, designed in wild prints of snowflakes, camouflage, and the British flag.
The dance culminated with the announcement of the Winter Formal Court. Vivia Davis was voted Winter Formal Queen, David Thaggard as Winter Formal King, Madison Wypyski as Winter Formal Princess, and Alan Elgin as Winter Formal Prince.
“It was a total shocker. In all honesty, I forgot that I was nominated until I received the ballot. It was such an exciting moment. I'm thankful for all the votes. We're all queens in my eyes,” explained Davis of her title.
Thaggard exclaimed, “Being crowned Winter Formal King is a true honor, and I feel extremely proud to represent the senior class.”
After the Court led the students in a final slow dance, the guests were given a souvenir, made by the Winter Formal Committee--snow globes inside mason jars and cups of all sizes.
As the exhausted dancers walked out of the auditorium with sore feet and special friends, they were one step closer to their rapidly-approaching final exams.
Photographs by Dr. Heath Stevens