A backwards prom

Senior-only dance to be held next weekend


Emma Main

MORP tickets are sold in the bookstore for $5. The event will be held on the SHS football field on May 8.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, this year’s seniors haven’t been able to have either of their junior or senior proms. Last year’s prom was cancelled since Indiana was under a stay-at-home order, and this year is proving to be difficult to have around 600 people in one space together.

However, seniors are getting a dance this year. But instead of being a regular prom, it will be called “MORP.” MORP will have many differences from a traditional prom, but the hope is to give seniors a sense of some normalcy.

“The big thing for us was if one person out of 600, because we usually have 600 at prom, were to come down (with) COVID, 600 students and probably about 100 staff would be quarantined for 10 days,” co-sponsor of prom Dawn Fowerbaugh said.

One of the biggest differences is the name. According to Fowerbaugh, Superintendent Pat Mapes was the one who decided there would not be a normal prom this year. That is why it is called MORP, which is just prom spelled backwards.

“We can’t call it prom because it’s not in any connection with that because students can come in whatever they want to dress up as,” senior class treasurer Teya Cassaday said.

Another difference in this year’s event is the location of the dance. While prom is normally held at the Indiana Roof Ballroom, MORP will take place outside at Cardinal Stadium.

MORP will be on Saturday, May 8, the same day that prom would have been held. And, in case it rains, the event will be moved to the following Saturday, May 15.

“We have decided that since our seniors right now, they didn’t get a prom last year because of COVID for their junior year, and they’ve got nothing this year, no homecoming, no snowcoming, that we are going to put on a senior event,” Fowerbaugh said.

There will be different “zones” students can occupy about every 15 yards in order to keep students somewhat spread out and make contact tracing easier, if necessary.

These zones will not be assigned. When students go to buy their MORP ticket, they will be able to write down the names of two people they would like to be in a zone with. That gives people the chance to coordinate with their friends to be able to be in the same zone.

“Students are going to have to stay in their zone so that if we did have a COVID case, only those kids in the zone are affected,” Fowerbaugh said.

While there are some regulations, there will still be safe and enjoyable events. According to Cassaday, they are working to get a DJ and there will even be a MORP court.

According to senior class vice president Noah Clark, food will be served at the concession stand but will not just be normal concession food.

While it won’t be a full meal, it offers students a chance to get something if they get hungry during those three hours.

For this year’s seniors, a lot has been taken away. But, MORP is seen as a light at the end of the tunnel.

“Personally, I think it’s something we can finally look forward to,” Cassaday said.