By June Peers
The long-awaited Wish Upon a Star Dance gave students the opportunity to show off their fancy outfits and let loose on the dance floor on February 26. Due to safety concerns related to Covid, the administration canceled the homecoming dance, originally scheduled to be held in October.
With an exceptional amount of fanfare, the Associated Student Body (ASB) announced the dance at lunch on the Highlander stage. On the stage, cheerleaders stood on each other’s shoulders to unveil a banner, which announced the exciting news of the forthcoming dance. After a year of lockdown and another year of Covid restrictions, students cheered that they would finally be able to attend a dance. For many, the Wish Upon a Star dance was their first school dance.
“Going to the dance was my first defining high school experience. It felt as though I was living an experience similar to those portrayed in coming-of-age films,” freshman Jana Barakat said.
When the dance finally arrived, it was full of fun, food, festivities, and fashion. Many agree that this much-anticipated dance did not disappoint. It was a simple, yet remarkable night spent dancing and connecting with friends. Many found it refreshing to just enjoy a dance, something that could not be enjoyed a year ago in lockdown.
Many students found the February Formal in itself to be a celebration for the decline in Covid cases.
The generally positive response to the dance can be largely attributed to the exuberance of the D.J., Lil G Music otherwise known as Gerrad O’Brien, an alumnus of Granada Hills Charter. He incorporated a variety of decades into the playlist, playing a mixture of both throwback songs and the latest hits. Attendees performed their most show-stopping dance moves with the utmost panache. Throughout the night, the DJ never tired in his spirit and energy, joining along with students by singing or dancing to the music. The general consensus among dance-goers was that this was the best DJ in the history of Granada dances.
“The best part of Wish Upon a Star was the dancing. The DJ played really good music,” freshman Brookelyn Baker said.
Although the tickets cost $40, the catering at the dance had students’ mouths watering. The food consisted of both treats and a meal for dinner. The treats included chips, ice cream, and cookies. For dinner, burgers were served from a food truck, including a vegan option.
Multiple photo booths were available to dance-goers where they could capture the essence of this special night. Free sketches offered by a caricature artist drew long lines of students, eager for a souvenir to commemorate the night.
ASB was able to transform the traditional school environment into something completely different. Students saw the campus in a different, more formal light. A glamorous red carpet led from the school entrance to the quad. Colorful strobe lights and fairy lights lit up the campus, and the cafeteria transformed into an elegant dining hall. Students saw how altering the appearance of the campus can make all the difference in their perception of the school atmosphere.
Being unable to attend dances for the past two years due to Covid, students have felt a void in their high school experience. The lockdown affected everyone, especially teenagers, who feel as though they missed out on a part of their adolescence. That all changed the night of the formal where memories were made that will last a lifetime. Dance attendees learned that along with education, school offers students an opportunity to simply enjoy and celebrate their youth.