Homecoming’s success provides promising future for Paly dances

Molly Fogarty, Author

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Designed with new approaches from the Associated Student Body, Palo Alto High School’s 2013 Homecoming Dance on Oct. 26 shattered records of attendance, leaving a hopeful future for Paly school dances.

“This year we definitely did some different things,” Student Activities Director Matt Hall said. “We hosted the Best Ask competition. I think that got the upperclasses more interested and involved in what we were trying to do.”

The “Best Ask” competition inspired students to creatively ask one another to the dance, with one taking the opportunity to ride onto the Quad in a chariot and others choreographing dances. from riding in on a chariot to choreographing dances. ASB gave a $50 gift card to the person who got the most likes on their video submission of their ask on the homecoming Facebook page, according to the ASB Facebook page.

“We decided to make it a dress up event, which is something we had heard from last year’s underclassmen … they always wanted a dance like that,” Hall said. “Last year we weren’t able to give them one, so this year we decided: ‘okay, lets give them what they want.’”

Another important difference was the catering by CREAM, a local ice cream sandwich shop in downtown Palo Alto, according to senior Dance Commissioner Alice Read.

“CREAM was catering which was also a first and thats never been done before at any high school dance that I know of,” Read said. “The point of doing things differently was to switch it up a bit and get more people more interested.”

ASB went about the rest of the dance in the same way they had in the past, according to Hall.

“[It was] pretty standard in terms of little decorations here and there, but you add all those things up and next thing you know we’re at 753 people,” Hall said.

This dance was the highest turnout since Hall began counting three years ago, he said.

“The homecoming number trend has been growing every year,” Hall said. “More than 200 compared to last year’s attendance.”

Read said she is confident that with the success of this dance comes a promising future for dances to come, like a possible upcoming winter dance.

“We’re hoping that we will have the same attendance for future dances and I’m pretty confident that we will,” Read said. “We will have a winter dance. We are not sure if it’s going to be a Sadies’ or a formal yet, but we’ll have one.”

Despite all of ASB’s efforts, the dances rely on the student body to be a success, according to Hall.

“The future of Paly dances is not up to ASB, it’s up to you guys [students],” Hall said. “If you come, it will happen, if you don’t come it won’t happen. ASB is there merely to provide the opportunity for the event, and we’re going to work as hard as we always have.”