Decades of dancing

SHS alumni share their prom memories


With the SHS prom just a few weeks away, The Journal gathered some stories from the proms of some staff alumni.

Counselor Briana Underwood, Class of 1999

Underwood went to prom both her junior and senior years, and remembers the general sense of excitement surrounding the whole experience.

She went shopping for her dress with her mom, which was a very meaningful experience for her.

Briana Underwood poses for a picture before prom. Underwood now works at SHS as a counselor.

“I was so involved in a lot of different things that I didn’t really get to spend a ton of one-on-one time with my parents a lot,” Underwood said. “So it was kind of a neat experience to be able to share that because it was just my mom and I. I didn’t go with friends or anything else. It was a really good bonding time for her and I.”

Underwood and her friends rented a limo to take them to prom, which was at the Children’s Museum. She said that it was one of the most memorable parts of the night.

“I think we could have ridden around all day or all night and not even gone to prom,” Underwood said.

Though she got to prom in the same way that many students continue to, there are definite differences in other areas. For example, she said that it was super important to get a good picture with your date at prom, and that students would hire professional photographers to come to prom in order to get them. She also said that rather than getting ready with friends, most girls would get their hair done by a hairdresser.

But, the heart of prom remains the same, and Underwood is thankful that she went.

“I’m glad that I went,” Underwood said. “I feel like those are great memories that you can’t really take away.”

English Teacher Brent Bockelman, Class of 2001

Bockelman only went to prom his senior year, and he wasn’t even planning on going until he found out that he had been nominated for prom court.

It was a busy day for Bockelman, who had a baseball tournament in the morning. So, he didn’t spend much time getting ready and was mainly focused on getting to the event. He didn’t have a limo like Underwood, but he had a memorable chauffeur of his own.

“One of my buddies that was on the team that didn’t go kind of like, as a joke, he escorted me to prom,” Bockelman said. “So he was still in his uniform, and he dropped me off at the front door and everything. So we thought it was kinda funny.”

He ended up arriving about an hour late to prom and said that what disappointed him most about this was that all of the shrimp was gone.

Though Bockelman didn’t think he was the type of person who would enjoy prom, he was wrong. He ended up having a great night, despite his unconventional circumstances. He didn’t have a date, dinner beforehand and many of the other things that teenagers consider essential. But, he still had a great time.

“It is kind of a once in a lifetime or twice in a lifetime experience, you know,” Bockelman said. “So once it’s gone, you don’t have that opportunity again.”

Business Teacher Ashley Quinlin, Class of 2002 and Township Police Officer Lucas Quinlin, Class of 2001

The Quinlin’s both went to prom all four years of high school, but went together for Ashley’s junior and Lucas’ senior proms.

One of their favorite memories from their prom together was going out to dinner with all of their friends at the Milano Inn. Though the restaurant has since closed, it was regarded as the best place for italian food.

(left)Lucas and Ashley Quinlin take pictures with their friends before prom. Lucas now works for the township as a police officer and Ashley is a SHS business teacher.

“It was really fun and it was decently priced. I think our whole dinner wasn’t even 50 bucks,” Ashley said.

Though most boys today have to rent a tuxedo for prom, Lucas said that nearly all of the boys used to be able to get free tuxedo rentals. A local shop had a special deal that allowed free rentals if the boys wore a tuxedo to school for the day.

Every prom has its funny moments, and the Quinlin’s prom was no exception. The music system was broken for a short portion of time, and the same “cha cha slide” style song was playing on a loop.

“For a while we were like, ‘OK. This is cool. This is cool,’ and then we were like, ‘What are we doing? This is stupid,’ and so we all stopped and then they figured it out,” Ashley said.

After the dance, there were many traditions that went on. Directly afterwards, there was “After-Prom,” which included inflatables, giant sumo suits and the like. The next day, there was a bus that would take everyone who wanted to go to King’s Island.

When the Quinlin’s went to prom, everyone attended, no matter whether they had a date or not. They both hold true to this sentiment, even twenty years later.

“Everybody should go,” Lucas said.

Educational Interpreter Jill Maude, Class of 1990


Maude’s prom experience started on spring break, when she got a letter from her boyfriend.

SHS alumna Jill Maude poses for prom pictures with her boyfriend. Maude now works for SHS as an educational interpreter.


“He sent me a postcard from Florida and it said ‘Will you go to prom with me,’” Maude said.

She said yes, and so when the day of prom came, he picked her up from her house, where her parents and grandparents were waiting to take pictures of the two of them.

Prom was at the Egyptian Room in the Murat both of the years that Maude went to prom.

And, just like the Quinlin’s, there were traditions that people did after prom ended. She said that she spent the night at someone’s house after the dance and that the next day, most people either went to King’s Island or Brown County State Park.

Her mother gave her permission to go to Brown County, but Maude decided to go to King’s island anyways. When her mom found out, she wasn’t too pleased with her daughter’s actions.

“Then I got grounded, but it was worth it,” Maude said.

Special Education Aide Austin Lundsford, Class of 2018

Lundsford had an eventful prom night. He and his date got lost on the way to the dance because both of their phones died and they didn’t have any directions.

“We ended up making it there in time,” Lundsford said. “We left really early, thank goodness.”

He hadn’t even been planning on going to prom, but one of his friends talked him into it.

Because he only attended prom a few years ago, so many of the traditions still exist today. For example, he had a creative way of asking his date to prom. He sent her on a scavenger hunt where the last clue asked if she wanted to attend with him.

“I hid notes around the theater department and she had to find them,” Lundsford said.

One thing that he found especially exciting about the dance itself was how fancy it was. He said that there was gourmet food prepared by professional chefs and special mocktails to enjoy.

The dancing at prom was also a highlight.

“We had this huge dance circle and everyone got pushed in the middle at least once,” Lundsford said.

Prom continues to be one of the most memorable experiences from high school, and he is glad that he went.

“It was one of the best nights of my life,” Lundsford said.