Don’t Stop Me Now!


There are countless statements that can be made about Benet Academy’s 2019 Prom, commenting on everything from the food to the fashion, the venue to the music. However, there is one feature of this event that cannot go unsaid: it was a long evening. Beginning at six o’clock Friday evening and carrying on until three a.m. Saturday morning, this year’s prom was an intense double-feature of dining, dancing, and delight that, while incredibly enjoyable, proved to be a fatiguing endeavor for many a student.

It all began at the first venue: Ashton Place in Willowbrook. A lovely reception area with vaulted ceilings, cream wallpaper, and gleaming chandeliers, Ashton Place provided the perfect setting for the finely-dressed young gents and ladies to flaunt their fine fashion for the first part of the evening. Students began to arrive and, after being greeted by faculty chaperones, found friends, acquaintances, and members of their group in order to kibitz before dinner commenced at 6:30. At that time, the hall was called to order and the meal was served, a buffet with three separate culinary options to choose from: Mexican, Chinese, and Italian cuisine. All three proved very tasty, and after dining, students migrated to the dance floor at the center of the room in order to show off their finest moves. The music was provided by a live orchestra called Swing Chicago, an ensemble with two lead vocals, male and female, who were impressively accompanied and provided energetic and enjoyable renditions of popular pop pieces that students sang and stomped their feet to. If needed, one could return to their table or stop by the bar that was positioned by the doors to the dining hall for a glass of water in order to cool off.

After this first part of the evening came to a close, students boarded buses that shuttled them to downtown Chicago for Post-Prom at the Yacht Club, an ornate establishment with plush carpets, gold sailing cups, and wood chairs that is positioned near the docks of Lake Michigan. More food was offered, although the quality of this cuisine was not nearly as impressive as that of Ashton Place. Students then had the option to dance to the music that was thrown down by the DJ in an area separate from the main dining room or to walk outside along the edge of the dock under the light of the moon. The former eventually proved uncomfortable for some, as the small size of the room set aside for dancing meant the floor became crowded and the air hot, although the music, more modern pieces including rap as well as pop and the occasional hit from the 70s and 80s, was well-done. The evening proved a bit chilly, but a walk along the water was rewarding for those few that ventured out, as the city shined with electric lights against the night sky.

The evening then came to the close as it always does, with Billy Joel’s “Piano Man.” Merely another rendition for the underclassmen, but a bittersweet farewell for the seniors, one thread united these disparate groups: they sang their hearts out to this tune, delivering words with gusto in order to feel every part of those final moments. The students then reboarded their buses and returned to Ashton Place, where they made the tiring voyage home.
In summary, the title of this event was, “Don’t Stop Me Now.” It was a sentiment echoed by many students throughout much of the evening as they enjoyed themselves, their friends, and parts of their Benet family as they danced and sang the night away. While the moment may have ended, and the glitter fade away, rest assured, memories made at such an evening are never stopped; they live on replay in the minds of those who experienced them, ever-living and ever-present, eternally beautiful.