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Inflation hikes Prom price

Inflation+hikes+Prom+price
Tony McGill

Students saw an increase in the price of Prom tickets this year, going up to $30 from last year’s price of $20, as well as Post-Prom tickets rising from $10 last year to $15 this year. Additionally, students did not have to leave class to buy Prom tickets at Titan Town this year, at the cost of paying a service fee for buying tickets electronically through GoFan.

Papio South has a contract system with the Beardmore Event Center, the prom venue, in which the price of renting the venue for Prom is negotiated every couple of years. Because of this, the Junior Class Officers planning Prom with their advisers, Renee Hahn and Kim Jatczak, can ballpark but not predict the venue cost when it comes time for a new contract.

“Renting the Beardmore Center, we sign multi-year contracts, but when our two-year contract is up, we have to go back and renegotiate with them,” Principal Jeff Spilker said. “And oftentimes, just like any just like anything in our world right now, prices are going up.” 

According to Hahn, one adviser to the Junior Class Officers responsible for planning Prom, it cost around $9,000 to rent the Beardmore Event Center this year. Paying for event staff brought the cost up to an estimated $10,000, with the DJ adding $1,200 to the cost. Adding teacher chaperones and decorations, the total cost of the dance this year came out to an estimated $18,000. 

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According to Spilker, 701 Prom tickets were sold this year at a price of $30 apiece, for a total revenue of $21,030, but not to pay for this year’s Prom.

“So the cost for our Prom from last week is already paid for… Out of the ticket sales from Prom 2023,” Hahn said. “We’re never quite sure when Beardmore is going to raise their price. And we sell the tickets sometimes before we necessarily know [price], so we like to have a little buffer in our account so that we can cover that cost for a year if they increase their price by, say $2,000.”

Hahn confirmed that the $21,030 in ticket revenue from this year would be put toward funding Prom, along with any decorations, for next year.

“We’ve got Prom set up for the next five years, and budget wise, it was in a pretty good spot. But then some years, the decorations get really expensive. Last year, our theme had feathers. I don’t know why, but feathers are super expensive, and we needed 35 of them for each vase,” Hahn said.

Hahn estimated that the Beardmore Event Center would cost about $500 more to rent next year. Even accounting for possible cost increases in decorations, the revenue from Prom ticket sales this year should cover the cost of Prom next year.

Though the Junior Class Officers sometimes make a donation to help fund Post-Prom with money from their account, the majority of the money for Post-Prom comes from parent donations, Post-Prom ticket sales, and donations from the Papillion La Vista Schools Community Foundation. That event is managed by parents and teachers, not Junior Class Officers.

“We did have to raise the ticket price a little bit this year,” Spilker said. “We went from $10 to $15 for Post-Prom, and that was because, the year before, we unfortunately went over budget… We really needed to raise our ticket price that five bucks to pay for the increase in rentals and, mainly, the increase in food prices.” 

“We had to kind of make sure that we weren’t running an event that was going to lose money,” Spilker added. “The goal is not to make money off of Post-Prom; the goal is to, honestly, just break even.”

According to Hahn, the main factor to look out for in terms of future Prom ticket prices would be a growing student population. 

“The only thing that’s going to happen for us is for us to go bigger,” Hahn said. “So ultimately, we also now have more students potentially going to Prom, buying more tickets. So some of that covers the cost of the bigger rental hall.” 

There are special memories that come from these events, and that’s why we want people to be able to go to them.

— Jeff Spilker, Principal

Next year, Spilker hopes to introduce the option to buy tickets for Prom and Post-Prom as a package deal at a discounted rate.

“My preference … would be to be able to go $40 for both,” Spilker said. “We were a little bit higher than that this year by five bucks… Mr. Penas said this in our meeting really well: That there are special memories that come from these events, and that’s why we want people to be able to go to them. We do have to pay for them, but we also want to make sure that we’re not upping the price so much that it’s discouraging attendance and causing kids not to be able to go.” 

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About the Contributor
Tony McGill
Tony McGill, Co-Editor-in-Chief
Hello! I'm Tony McGill. This is my senior year, and also my third and final year on staff. I am also on the cross country and track teams. When I'm not doing journalism, I like to watch football, run, and hike. If you have any questions or suggestions about Titan journalism, feel free to talk to me or reach out at [email protected].
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