To The Point 3-6-14

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On Saturday night, April 5th, students from Switzerland County High School will travel across the river to General Butler State Park in Carrollton for this year’s prom.

It will be a night that the kids will never forget; and once the dancing is over, a group of dedicated adult volunteers will stay up all night to make sure that a dreamy night doesn’t turn into a nightmare.

For years high school parents and other members of the community have worked to create an after prom activity for everyone. It takes place in the high school gym, and involves a night of food, games, music, prizes, entertainment, and just plain fun.

It’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it. In fact, none of us will ever know just how valuable the event is.

The after prom is an activity that gives students something to do after the dance is over. If you remember your prom night, you probably remember that once the dance ended, you and your friends didn’t want to go home. Maybe you went for some food; perhaps you found a party; or maybe you drove around looking for fun.

What we see now as adults that none of us saw as students was the danger that was also part of the equation.

Not that we were, necessarily, doing anything wrong.

Statistically, the number of people driving impaired after 10 p.m. on a weekend is a huge percentage. As we drove around looking for things to do, we also exposed ourselves to other drivers.

And other situations.

You’ve heard it before: not much good happens after midnight.

Well, Switzerland County, on prom night, there’s one really good thing happening after midnight.

The after prom’s focus is giving students an alternative to potential prom night situations. By giving everyone the chance to spend the night with their friends in a safe and fun environment, it truly does become a night students never forget.

But there’s another side to all of this fun.

In order to have all of this fun available; the committee works really hard to raise funds every year so that the students can come and enjoy the night without any cost to them. In fact, students who don’t attend the prom, but who are juniors and seniors at SCHS, also have the opportunity to come to the after prom.

Once the students enter the high school gym, they aren’t permitted to leave until the event is over, so parents can get some sleep knowing that their child is safe and having fun.

Over the years, the committee has accepted monetary donations from individuals and also from civic organizations, churches, businesses, corporations, and others who see the value in the after prom.

Yes, the economy has its up and downs, but this year has been particularly difficult in the fundraising area for the after prom committee. After years of providing thousands of dollars in prizes and food and entertainment; this year’s giving has been way down.

Thankfully, the after prom committee’s thrifty ways meant that it was able to save funds from last year; so this year’s event promises to be – once again – outstanding.

But the real danger is that, after using all of its reserve funds this year, if donations don’t pick up, this could be the final year that the after prom takes place.

And, Switzerland County, we simply cannot allow that to happen.

Our students, our kids, need to know that year after year they have a safe and fun alternative way to spend the night after the prom is over. With the fun comes a responsibility to see the value and then help fund that value.

If we all pitch in, the after prom will continue to be an important and wonderful event that lets our students have fun and – most importantly – be safe.

Stacey Mathews is the chairperson of this year’s after prom committee; and you can find her in the courthouse; or give her a call. You can take a donation to the high school; or you can bring it by the newspaper office and we’ll get it to the committee.

Do you own a business? You can also donate items that can be used as gifts for the students. You can donate food or sodas; or you can donate money so all those things can be purchased.

Rest assured that each and every penny you donate; each and every item you give; will be used directly and wholly for our kids.

This is important, folks. We need to step up and step forward. Clubs, churches, businesses, individuals: everyone can help make this happen. It doesn’t have to be a lot, it just has to be something.

Now’s the time to make this more than a dream, it’s reality time.

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I would still like to hear more of a community dialogue about the possibility of Vevay Town Hall moving to Seminary Street.

A couple of weeks ago we ran a story that a move from the Ferry Street location to the Seminary Street utilities building was a consideration; and have printed information from both the town, which has not yet made a decision; and from Historic Landmarks and others who believe that such a move would be a mistake.

Who we’re not hearing from is the community itself.

I know that there is a tendency to feel like you’re going to be “shouted down” by others if you voice your opinion; but I can assure you that you will be given a forum in this paper to give your opinion and ideas.

In saying that, remember that nothing personal is going on here, so this is the chance to tell us what you believe, not to attack and bash people, parties, and ideologies who don’t share your belief.

As a community we should be able to have a dialogue, even when we don’t agree with each other. It’s okay for there to be more than one point of view.

I’d like to hear yours.

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Lots of leads and lots of talk about our story last week concerning the class ring from Switzerland County High School Class of 1982 that was found about 25 years ago in a river in Southern Kentucky.

What we haven’t found (yet) is the owner.

Keep talking. Keep asking.

It has to belong to someone; and more than anything the woman in Kentucky who currently possesses it wants to see it returned to its owner.