Brianna Soukup’s “Big memories from small towns” prom article (May 28, Page B1) was very refreshing. She shares what Carrabec High School’s prom looks and feels like. It is reminiscent of my proms of the mid-1970s. Carrabec High School – you know how to do it right!

In this day and age of upcycling/repurposing/reducing, the glitzy and pricey proms seen elsewhere seem out of place.

It has been baffling, even with my children, the cost for one short evening. If tuxedos, top-of-the-line dresses, limousines, up-dos at the beauty parlor, venues at the glamorous hotels, are all the prom norms at age 17, then this old lady has to wonder how a wedding celebration will bring a first-time specialness.

All of my gowns were sewn by my mother. My hair stylist was me and Clairol hot curlers in my bathroom.

Our venue was the gym, transformed with crepe paper. My date wore his best suit jacket, to be seen again the next year.

Our caterer was the waitstaff at local restaurants – often someone we knew, who marveled at our transformation.

Our music was provided by some local band. We had a blast. A waltz and a kiss under these circumstances were just as rich as could be found anywhere.

So, Carrabec High School prom goers – you hold your head with pride and shout it loud: Proms do not have to break the bank and they can still be a very special evening.

I am only frustrated that Carrabec prom attendee Lauryn Serafino was able to snag a better deal with her beautiful, $6 Goodwill-purchased gown than it cost to sew mine 42 years ago.

It took several trips of handpicked fiddlehead sales for me to make the $18 needed for my 1975 gown.

Lucy Webb Hardy

Bucksport High School Class of 1975


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