The Franklin News-Post|
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Friday, April 11, 2014
By STACEY HAIRSTON - Staff Writer
Franklin County High School is bringing back its after-prom party for the first time in seven years.
This year's prom will take on a black and white masquerade theme, beginning at 8 p.m. at the Franklin County YMCA and ending at midnight.
From there, students can opt to attend the after-prom party in the YMCA gym from midnight to 4 a.m.
The after-prom party will feature swimming until 2 a.m., sumo wrestling, a green screen, bouncy boxing, airbrush tattoos, a giant twister and a velcro wall.
Students will not be required to stay for the entire party, but once they leave, they will not be permitted to re-enter the party.
"Those who stay all night could win a 2014 Hyundai Elantra," said Julia Bishop, junior class advisor. "I really want to make it (the party) fun so the students have some place safe to go."
Tickets to the FCHS prom are $15 a person.
Chaperones and help with fundraising are needed. Anyone wishing to help in those areas may contact Bishop at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) is cautioning students about the dangers and legal consequences of underage drinking.
Statistics show nearly one-third of alcohol-related teen traffic deaths occur during April, May and June, a time when parties and celebrations can turn dangerous and sometimes tragic for underage drinkers, according to the ABC website.
"With these sobering statistics in mind, ABC encourages parents to talk with their teens about the dangers of underage drinking and set ground rules before their son or daughter leaves the house for these events," the website states. "Although prom and graduation season is a time for celebration, it's important to be safe and make smart choices."
It is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to possess or consume alcohol. Under Virginia law, persons 18 to 20 convicted of underage purchase, possession or consumption of alcohol will lose their driver's license for six months to a year. Consequences also include a Class 1 misdemeanor on file for life.
Teens under the age of 18 may also lose their driver's license for six months to a year, or have driving privileges delayed for six months following the date he or she reaches the age of 16 and three months.
ABC offers the following prom safety tips for students and parents:
•Remember to never drink alcohol and drive, or accept a ride with someone who has been drinking.
•Set non-negotiable rules about drinking, drugs and driving under the influence of alcohol.
•Ask your teen for a complete itinerary for the evening, including where they'll be going before, during and after prom.
•Ask for cell phone numbers so you can reach them, and/or establish call-in times to connect with your kids.
•Be aware of alcoholic energy drinks, which contain six to 12 percent alcohol, nearly three times more alcohol than most beer.
•If your child is going to an after-prom party at a friend's house, it is your responsibility to find out if the parents are going to allow underage drinking at their home.
•Offer your child the unconditional option of calling you for help, advice or to pick them up at anytime, day or night. Make it clear you want to be part of their smart and safe decisions.
For those hosting an after-prom party, the ABC offers the following advice and safety tips:
•It is illegal to provide alcohol to a guest under the age of 21 unless they are accompanied by a parent, guardian or spouse who is 21 years of age or older. If your guest list includes persons under the age of 21, be aware that serving to an underage person is considered one of the most serious ABC violations and is against the law.
•Although parents have the right to provide alcohol to their own children in their own home, it is illegal to purchase, aid and abet or give alcohol to other minors. Do not allow anyone younger than 21 years of age to consume alcoholic beverages at your party, and do not allow persons of legal age to provide alcoholic beverages to anyone underage. Violating any of these laws can result in the conviction of a Class 1 misdemeanor, which carries a fine of up to $2,500 and/or up to one year in jail.
•As the host of a party or event, you may be held responsible for the actions of your guests. The party host could face civil liability if either a partygoer is hurt or a third person is injured due to alcohol impairment.
•Remember, one does not have to be heavily intoxicated to be impaired. Driving skills and abilities can be impaired with the first drink.
•Virginia's Zero Tolerance Law makes driving after having consumed almost any amount of alcohol a serious criminal offense for drivers under the age of 21.
For more information on Virginia alcohol laws and penalties or for tips on hosting an alcohol-free party, visit ABC's website at www.abc.virginia.gov.