13 Prom Traditions That Will Totally Blow Your Mind

Kelsey Stiegman

From Seventeen

Prom is a ton of fun no matter where you go to school–the music, the dancing, the dresses–but every school has different ways of celebrating the big night, and some schools have more unique traditions than others. Here are all the weirdest things students do for prom across the country...maybe your school indulges in some of these fun customs!

1. Senior only dress code. At some schools, all of the seniors will wear white to prom. Men will wear white tuxes and the ladies will wear white gowns. Of course, that means no underclassmen can be caught dead in the color.

2. Juniors' choice. At a school in Maryland, it's on the juniors to plan prom. They pick the theme and decorate the school gym, sometimes not telling the seniors anything about the night's festivities until they walk into the dance. This leads for an incredible surprise for the seniors, of course.

3. Red carpet entrance. Prom attendees get to feel like celebrities at one school in Setauket, New York where they role out the carpet for the seniors–literally! Prom-goers walk the red carpet and take pictures as they enter prom. Meanwhile, the entire town comes out to sit on bleachers and watch everyone arrive.

4. Etiquette class. Boys in Newark, Delaware have a lot to learn before they can head to prom. At one all boys school, they spend the day of prom taking etiquette classes and dance lessons. Then, they write letters to their date, which they present at prom. I guess chivalry isn't dead in Delaware.

5. Make an entrance. It's all about topping your follow classmates at one school in Sterling, Kentucky where prom-goers try to make the biggest entrance possible. In the past, attendees have arrived in a hot air balloon, a golf cart, and even an ice cream truck!

6. The Happiest Place on Earth. One California school ends prom the right way: by sending all of their students to Disneyland for the night. The students have the park all to themselves from 10pm to 8am. Talk about a memorable night!


7. Post-prom party. Some schools will host a party after prom with food and fun activities. Most are optional, but at some schools attendance is mandatory. If that's the case, though, chances are there will be a ton of fun games and yummy food to keep you occupied all night.

8. Skipping school the day of prom. Some schools have prom on a Friday and kids will dip out on classes that day. It's totally understandable, because how are you supposed to get ready for prom if you don't have an entire day? Others schools, however, may make attendance mandatory the day of prom (to avoid this tradition), so make sure you look up your school rules before playing hooky.

9. Wearing garters. At some schools girls buy garters (yes, like brides wear at weddings) to wear for prom. They'll get a garter to match their dress and some girls even get them customized with their initials or graduation year. Once prom starts, girls will give their garter to their date to wear around their arm and the date will often keep the garter. The garter tradition stems from the popular wedding tradition of the garter removal. According to BrideBox, this tradition was based on the belief that it is lucky to keep a piece of a bride's gown.

10. Prom weekend. After prom night–or sometimes immediately after prom–students will skip town with their whole squad and head to a house on the beach. It's a fun weekend trip to celebrate the end of the school year where groups of students will rent a hotel room or a house and hang out at the beach.

11. Wearing your date's tie. Guys will give their dates their ties to wear–after pictures, of course. Unlike garters, the girls usually have to give them back at the end of the night, so they can be returned to the suit rental store.

12. Pre-prom pep rally. Some schools will host a pep rally the day of, or the week before prom to really get students stoked about the dance.

13. Drawing your prom date from a hat. Students at Aquin High School from Freeport, IL participate in a date-picking tradition that's almost 90 years old, called Prom Draw. JournalStandard.com reports that students volunteer to have their names entered, then the boys draw their date's name and do promposal skits for the girls. The girls are dressed in disguise for the skits, then the boys ask them and they must say yes. Prom Draw was started in the 1920s in order to include local kids from the orphanage in the prom fun. The students vote every year on whether to keep the tradition alive or not.

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