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Eyes on the ball: Students will hold prom drive

A group of students from all four District 196 high schools wants to make this year’s prom a little more fashionable and a lot more affordable for their classmates.

The students, members of the district’s AVID program, are holding a prom dress drive between now and Feb. 15. They will sell the dresses at an event March 8, and use the money they raise to help pay for expenses associated with the program.

Donated dresses will sell for $20 to $75. The event will also include a prom fair with vendors offering discounts on nail and hair service, flowers and more.

AVID, a program designed to push high-potential freshmen toward preparing for college, is new this year at Rosemount High School but it’s been in place at other district schools for as long as seven years. A service project is part of the program each year. In the past, students have packed meals at Feed My Starving Children or held a car wash for teachers. Eastview High School student services administrator Jodi Hanson said the idea this year was to bring the project a little closer to home.

“This is something they can really be a part of,” Hanson said. “We also liked the idea of making prom more affordable for a lot of kids.”

So far it has been up to the students to spread the word. They are printing postcards to be distributed around town and posting messages on social media.

Hanson hopes to collect at least 300 dresses. Students who donate will receive a discount on a new dress at The Wedding Shoppe in St. Paul, a deal on nail or hair services at Lili Salon in Edina and a $10 discount on any dress they buy at the March 8 AVID sale.

Money raised will pay for expenses associated with taking AVID students on college visits or buying things such as textbooks and ACT prep material.

“(Students) are really excited, because it’s something that’s close to them,” Hanson said. “There’s lots of service projects we can do that are nice, but this is something that’s in their wheelhouse.”

The AVID programs at all four district high schools will hold dress collection events from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 25, Feb. 1 and Feb. 15.

Nathan Hansen

Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.

(651) 460-6606