The upper- and underclassmen are divided on their opinions of the 2016 Homecoming Dance.
The defining feature for the 2016 Homecoming Dance was the new DJs–Dynamic DJ Entertainment, a man and woman duo from Maryland–and their placement on the dance floor. Instead of the usual place at the back of the gym, the DJs had their equipment set up in the middle of the dance floor. It was evident to all the students that this was an attempt to break up the “grind circle,” but it didn’t work. Instead of dispersing the populace of “grinders,” the students danced in front of the DJs and not behind them. Senior Samantha Opont called the experience “claustrophobic” and “not lit.”
The other complaint among the students was the music played at the dance. Part of Dynamic DJ Entertainment’s policy is that they will play songs that are requested by the students both at the dance and over Twitter in the days before. Junior Xavier Lemieux said that he did request a song, but it was never played. He described the dance as a dance that his grandparents would go to.
However, the dance was particularly popular with the underclassmen. Freshman Ghandia Hutchinson said the dance was “pretty cool,” but wished it was longer. Freshmen Jessica Thall and Andrew Dennare didn’t mind the presence of the DJ’s in the middle and liked the music. All three freshmen interviewed said that they would return to the dance again next year and didn’t mind the placement of the DJs.
PE teacher Ms. Walker and junior Bethany Kate Shuster enjoyed this year’s dance as well. Ms. Walker enjoyed the music and appreciated how the DJ was in the middle this year, which, she said, helped the problem of the grind circle. Bethany Kate said that she only did “a little bit” of dancing and that “there were a few songs that I didn’t really know,” but she still enjoyed the music. Senior Hannah Raynor also said that the photobooth area in the back right corner of the dance floor, which featured a small gazebo and strings of lights “was cute.” Sophomore Hannah Long said that the photo area was her idea and she was able to be put it together with the help of several clubs, including the AG Department, as well as Dowell J. Howard.
Ms. Keeler, the business and marketing teacher who organized the dance, was not surprised by the feedback from the students. “It’s like every year, some people really liked it, some people really didn’t,” she said. “It depends on who you’re with and if you like the music or not.” She called having the DJs in the middle of the dance floor an experiment that the administration hoped would work, but even she said that it did not. She said that next year, she thinks that the DJs will stay on a raised stage but will likely be closer to their original location in the back. “Securing the DJ,” she said, was one of the many things she had to do to organize the dance, but she said that cleaning up afterwards was the hardest part, but she had help from the SCA throughout the process.