Celebration: What is it and why should I care?

What is Celebration?

Celebration is an exciting post-prom party for all Newton North seniors that gives them one last opportunity to celebrate as a class. They arrive at the high school to find their school magically transformed to represent a theme chosen each year. Past themes have included Grease, Fiesta, Aloha Hawaii, and Alice in Wonderland.

Why is Celebration important?

For more than 20 years, the Newton North Parent Teacher Student Organization (PTSO) has hosted this festive event in order to give seniors a fun and safe place to go on their prom night. By providing a drug- and alcohol-free gathering for Newton North teens, the Newton North PTSO and all who support Celebration help strengthen the Newton community.

Where does Celebration take place?

Celebration takes place at Newton North High School in the main lobby, along the hallway outside the cafeteria, and in the cafeteria.

What are the hours?

Celebration runs from 11:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m.

Who goes to Celebration?

All Newton North seniors are invited to attend Celebration with a guest. Families are asked not to plan competing events after the prom in order to encourage as many seniors as possible to attend. Students who go to the senior prom are brought straight to Newton North by bus right afterwards. Other students walk, drive, or are driven to Newton North at 11:30 p.m. for Celebration. About 90 percent of seniors go to Celebration.

Why should my senior go?

Celebration gives seniors a fun, no-pressure way to enjoy themselves as a class. Because drugs and alcohol are prohibited, students can amuse themselves safely. Students are always amazed at the transformation of some of their high school spaces into theme areas, and they love all of the free food that is offered to them.  They enjoy all of the entertainment at Celebration, including the casino and DJ, a prize drawing table with 175 items, karaoke, tattoos, and a photo booth.

What if my senior doesn’t go to the prom?

All seniors are invited to Celebration regardless of whether they go to the prom.

What do students wear to Celebration?

Many students wear casual clothes to Celebration. Students who arrive straight from the prom have the option to change into casual clothes in the Athletics changing rooms.

How does the clothing check work?

If they wish, students may check their casual clothes inside the theatre entrance of Newton North before boarding mandatory buses to the senior prom. They pick up their clothes inside the main entrance of Newton North when they return by bus from the prom. They change their clothes, check their promwear, enjoy Celebration, and pick up their promwear before they leave the event.

Are guests invited?

Seniors may attend Celebration with a guest.

May students leave and re-enter?

No, once a student leaves Celebration, he/she will not be permitted to re-enter.

How much does it cost to get in?

Admission to Celebration is free.

Does my student need to bring money?

No, everything at Celebration is free. Upon entry, students are given prize drawing tickets and casino money. When they win at the casino, they are given more prize drawing tickets.

What is there to do at Celebration?

Entertainment at Celebration includes a casino, a DJ, a prize drawing table with 175 items, karaoke, tattoo artists and caricature artists, and a photo booth. Students are also offered plenty of free food and beverages. Students spend the evening socializing, relaxing, eating, and enjoying the various forms of entertainment.

Who plans and runs Celebration?

The Newton North PTSO hosts Celebration. A team of 15-20 parent/guardian volunteers works from January to June to plan the event. About 200 parent/guardian volunteers (and a few returning college students) set up, staff, and clean up after Celebration.

May I help with on Celebration if I have a senior?

Yes, parents/guardians of seniors are welcome to help plan and staff Celebration. We also ask that you donate teen-friendly items for the prize drawing and money, if possible, in order to help cover the cost of Celebration.

May I help with Celebration if I don’t have a senior?

Yes, parents/guardians of all Newton North students are needed in order to pull off this large and multifaceted event. Parents/guardians of students in all grades are asked to “pay it forward” by donating money and prizes for the prize drawing and by staffing the event. Because some seniors ask that their parents/guardians not staff Celebration, volunteers from other grades are especially needed.

What is the budget for Celebration?

The cost of Celebration, free for each senior and a guest, is about $15,000.

What are the big-ticket items?

Big-ticket items include entertainment (caricature artists, tattoo artists, karaoke, DJ, etc. ($6,000), decorations ($3,300) printing and postage ($1,000), storage unit rental ($900), casino rental ($600), chocolate fountain rental and chocolate ($300), and red carpet ($250). 

Where does the money to pay for Celebration come from?

Celebration volunteers raise about a third of the money from generous local businesses and organizations. The remaining two-thirds is solicited from Newton North parent/guardians. All food and beverages are donated.

How does the prize drawing work?

Students receive two tickets for the prize drawing when they enter the event. They can win more prize drawing tickets at the casino. 175 prizes such as gift cards and dorm room items are donated by parents/guardians for the prize drawing table.

May my senior drive to Newton North?

All students who go to the senior prom take mandatory buses paid for by class fundraising, prom ticket proceeds, and PTSO funds ($1,500 per year each for the junior class and the senior class). Students may drive to Newton North, park their car in a Newton North lot, and then board the prom buses. If they are not attending the prom, students may drive to Celebration and park in a Newton North lot.