Dance decorating: The student council that never sleeps

Leland Spangler, Reporter

“The city never sleeps” is a common cliche when describing the nightlife around major metropolitan areas such as New York City, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Interestingly enough, this phrase is rarely attributed to Manitou Springs High School despite the seemingly perpetual Student Council presence.

Looking more like sleep-deprived zombies then the usually vibrant people they are, officers and representatives alike slowly filter into Mrs. Stoneback’s room during the weeks leading up to a dance with the common goal of decorating the school according to the chosen theme. While most students are preparing for bed, council members are just gearing up.

Outside of the “B-Day” class, each student is required to work a minimum of eight hours during the two weeks leading up to a dance, eight hours the day of, and two more hours directly after the festivities end. Almost everyone, however, overachieves.

“It’s really time consuming, but it has to get done,” says Junior Class Vice-President Sophie Kilroy. “We have a lot of homework, and it takes a ton of time away from other stuff. But the whole time we are with friends, and we want to make the school look good for the dance.”

Unfortunately, making the school look good has become increasingly difficult for the council over the past few years.

“Three or four years ago we had the halls completely decorated – and then the fire marshall showed up for a random inspection,” recalls Student Council advisor Alice Stoneback. “We had paper covering the ceiling, lights, and most of the walls. After spending all that time making it look awesome, we had to call students out of class to tear everything down.”

State-mandated fire code prohibits decorations on the ceiling, covering more than one-third of the walls, tampering with the lights, and a myriad of other restrictions.

“It makes a huge impact on what we are able to produce,” laments Junior Class President Mahalia Henschel. “It makes hall decorating really difficult.”

“The fire marshall and our administration have asked us to follow these regulations, and ever since we have been trying to break less and less,” says Stoneback, and the council will strive to continue this trend during the upcoming snowcoming week.

Despite the creative boundaries, Student Council is already hard at work preparing for the upcoming fantasy theme. With many members clocking in at 8 hours of donated time already, you can be assured that the halls will be off the hook.