Stumps Reinforces that Schools Value Prom Traditions

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This year schools are spending anywhere from $500- $10,000+ on prom décor, props, activities, favors, and table settings.

While prom is expensive, the experience is priceless. “Parents, administrators, teachers, and students value the traditions of prom,” says Jacquie Downey, Director of Sales and Marketing for Stumps Party, a national prom supplies and event decorations company. “This year schools are spending anywhere from $500- $10,000+ on prom décor, props, activities, favors, and table settings.”

Some schools hire out events planners, while other schools order supplies and create the event themselves.

Reasons Schools Invest in Prom Events
Feedback from Stumps Party customers identifies the following reasons why school officials value prom:

  •     Prom gives students opportunities to creatively plan and decorate a major event.
  •     Student committees learn to work together, manage budgets, and organize event details.
  •     Prom attendees gain life experiences through dating, dancing, budgeting, and planning.
  •     Privileges associated with prom are incentives for students to respect attendance policies and graduation requirements throughout the school year.

Kate Henderson, a prom adviser at Wendover High School, in Wendover, Utah says, “If our Prom did not exist there would be a huge hole in our junior program. They work concessions all year and clean the gym after all home games to raise enough money to afford a nice prom. We also have an absentee and tardy policy that hinges on all extracurricular activities, which prom is part of. If students have unexcused absences or tardies, they cannot attend Prom. The students work very hard to be eligible to go.”

Prom History, Traditions, & Trends

  •     Prom’s role in American culture dates back to the debutante balls of the wealthy and then by 1894 to institutionalized settings to instill etiquette at elite colleges.
  •     By the early 1900’s, proms were in high schools. Since then, tens of millions of students have taken part in the prom tradition.
  •     Stumps created the first, prom favor, memory booklets in 1926 and still sells them today.
  •     Popular 2012 prom themes include Paris, Mardi Gras, Hollywood, Under the Sea, Sweet, Casino and City.
  •     This year’s popular favors are swag bags filled with bling and other gifts.
  •     According to Mark Charvat, a prom deejay with over 31 years of experience at J & M Productions, this year’s popular musical artists include Usher and LMFAO. Charvat explains, “Top slow songs are requested according to the prom’s theme. For example, Aerosmith’s I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing is often requested at Hollywood theme proms because it was the leading song from the movie, Armageddon.” This year, Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On, the theme song from the movie, Titanic is a popular, prom song.
  •     While prom traditions have changed through the years, certain customs remain- selecting prom royalty, taking pictures at parents’ homes, decorating the dance, and continuing the fun at after-proms.

Downey adds, “Prom is a rite of passage and a memory that will last a life time. Today’s teens will be telling their children about the fun they had at prom and so on. Some experiences are just worth the investment. Prom is one of those events.”

About Stumps
Stumps Prom & Party has been America's leading seller for prom, event and party supplies since 1926. Stumps introduced the first Memorie Booklet and the first decorations for prom 86 years ago. Based in South Whitley, Indiana, Stumps has played a pivotal role in transforming millions of school events from ordinary to extraordinary. For more information, visit

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Christy Phend
Stumps Party
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