by Luis Contreras
A few weeks ago, junior Alex De Ayala was adamant in making a promise that he intended to keep.
“I’m going to rage my face off, and then some,” he said.
Countless other students shared these sentiments as hundreds showed up to Cemo Auditorium for the homecoming dance on Saturday, Sept. 24.
Groups rolled up in style. Some borrowed their parents’ cars, and some went the extra mile and rented limos. Everyone, however, came looking as fresh as they could.
The guys looked as dashing as ever. The goal was to dress as nicely as possible, and hopefully impress a couple ladies in the process. Black and navy suits were commonplace with a variety of neckties and bow ties present.
It was easy to get distracted by your own attire but everyone knows that the most important part of the ensemble is the lady by your side. Freshmen and seniors alike were eager to show off their dates to friends and classmates.
Students showed their St. Thomas background by acting like true gentlemen. Doors were always opened and chairs were always pulled out. In short, everyone was on his classiest behavior.
Most homecoming groups started the night out by joining at someone’s house.
Parents took pictures and talked about how handsome and grown up their sons look or about how glamorous their daughter’s dress is.
Once the parents were satisfied by the endless barrage of photos, the students gathered and drove off to a nice dinner before the dance.
This was the biggest chance to impress a date. Spending a little extra cash was a great way to tell a date she is worth it.
Popular choices for dinner were steakhouses such as Eddie V’s or Fleming’s. These high end places cost a little more dough but were worth it for many couples.
Others chose to keep it more relaxed by going to Cyclone Anaya’s nearby or even Spaghetti Western a couple of blocks away.
Regardless of where you chose to dine, dinner was the perfect precursor to a night full of fun.
Freshman Ryan Davin relished the opportunity to have a nice meal with his lady.
“My date was really sweet,” Davin said. “She’s been a good friend for a while and dinner was a nice chance to show her how great she is.”
The dance itself was the event everyone was waiting for. Starting at 9 p.m., students and their dates formed a line that resembled more of a blob. One by one, couples were let in by teachers and chaperons.
As is tradition, the boys had to draw a ball from a red bag to determine their entrance. If the unlucky gentleman drew a black ball, he would be taken aside and breathalyzed for any alcoholic substances.
Despite the temporary setbacks found at the door and at subsequent breathalyzer tests, students soon stampeded into the auditorium, ready to party.
Right from the get-go the music was infectious, grabbing hold of students and absorbing them into an already packed dance floor.
ight when the students thought the music had reached its peak, they were surprised by DJ Gaudi.
Junior Nick Gaudiano, AKA DJ Gaudi, is the usual DJ for dances and has become a crowd favorite. For the majority of Homecoming, though, he was nowhere to be found. But right when the night seemed lost, he came out of nowhere for one of his famous sessions.
For half an hour, he quickened the pace and gave even the most exhausted dancers a second wind.
With his famous mixes, DJ Gaudi effortlessly revitalized a crowd and gave the night some extra fire.
Senior BJ Sherry knows all about this. He was a dancing machine on Friday, being one of the first ones on the floor and among the last to leave.
“There was a lot of techno and fist-pumping songs,” Sherry said.
From the unnecessary mosh pits to the awkward group of fist pumpers in the corner, kids were not afraid to let go and dance their heart out.
“[The dancing] is always an issue,” Director of Student Activities Joe O’Brien said, referring to grinding. “We tried some new things to try to bring down the number of couples that danced in that way. We set up the table with Tom Eagle in the middle and tried to get some more chaperones on the edges of the crowd. It helped but we still weren’t able to eliminate the problem completely.”
Despite the general feeling of excitement that permeated through the crowds, there were groups that decided not to take part in the dancing.
Some preferred to sit at the back tables and talk while others hung out outside and had a nice conversation with their dates.
Another favorite of dance-goers was the coffee bar.
Like last year, the Mothers’ Club converted Mary Moody Hall into a cafe.
This cafe was a place to relax after the dancing as well as a place to run into other couples for a casual conversation or to plan the events to follow.
Regardless of their activities of choice, all the students had a great night.
Good food, good music and good friends all met together to create a fantastic school event that everyone will be talking about for months.