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JUDGED BY JD: Stress Planning Success – Red & Black

The annual events are the hardest to pull off. But then again, every one of Student Council’s events are annual… so yes, between Pep Rallies, Patio on Fire, Pepero Grams, Winter Ball, Sadies, Homecoming, Unplugged, KIS Got Talent, and Prom… it’s hard to decide on one to the call the “hardest” event to plan. But personally, I’d say it’s the Winter Ball.

Let’s start with the name. The strangely minimalistic poster that appeared on the walls of the High School and G-Building reading “RED & BLACK” with only the date and time left some curious, while most just passed it by. There were those who cared enough to ask. My closer friends who did know about it would just say, “that’s a pretty stupid name.” And those know I take pride in Student Council would asked why we chose that name. I told them, it came from the half jazz and half EDM aspect to the event. But it really just a quick random name thrown on the table during one of the officer meetings at Pascucci. The dress code was semi-formal, the first half students would enjoy finger foods including canapés, sushi, and chips, the second portion with pizza and chicken.

The center of our anxiety comes from the ambiguity as to how many people would show up, if we would make enough money to cover the costs, and we could pull off a “fun” enough event for people to want to come back. We have to expect from as little as 20 to 620 students (unlikely, we all know) to show up. Ticket sales are dead and pick up only the day before. Number of tickets sold on day one? One. Everything happens the day before once the numbers roll in. We decide how many cups or bowls of punch we need. We decide the number of Teeba Chicken or Costco Pizza boxes the night before too. The night before the event our ticket sales were still at 97. At the door, we surpassed 120.

The venue is tougher to pick. For prom, we have our list of favorites, we usually pick from there. But for the Winter Ball, we look at all of our potential location options. We’ve looked into Be-hive, a casual club studio in Cheongdam (which we booked last year but got cancelled on due to renovations), O.N. once again (last year’s venue), Grand Hyatt’s skating rink (could only fit 50 people), and lastly our very own lovely Lower Gym. Which everyone absolutely hated.

On top of that, the tickets were 30,000 won, the same price as last year. Students protested, confused, unsatisfied, and disgusted at the fact that the venues was now on-campus, but the price remained the same. As a council, we continued to find ways to advertise, offering discounts to those who would publicly propose to their friends/interests regardless of gender or grade. Most of the Student Council members had participated in this “trend,” but it stopped there. I guess Winter Ball never will have the same magic as Prom or Sadies. Another goal of ours for the future. Friends in groups of five were also given discounts of 50,000 won, from the original price of 150,000 won.

From the beginning, our ultimate goal was to charge tickets at the same price, but make each aspect: from food and drinks to music and entertainment, that much better. If you had come, you would have agreed that aside from the venue, every aspect was outdid last year. We had unlimited food, a real elevated stage with concert speakers, laser lights, a sound-booth, and smoke machine, game booths, an actual photo booth, and an improved line-up of performers including: Jazz Band, DJ Byeon, BLACKOUT Dance Team, and Jake & Addy.

Certainly, I come from a somewhat biased viewpoint, it’s my Student Council. But trust me when I tell you that I can label events that need work, events that were meh, and events that were lit. The verdict truly lies in the voice of students. But from what I have heard, I can assure you that most people were rather impressed with the event. They had no idea such an event could be pulled off in the basement of the building they dreaded visiting most. People were surprised to see lights other than Christmas lights, the dance team shrieked with excitement at the elevated stage and smoke machine, and an upgrade from last year’s french fries and sandwiches, we went the whole nine yard to keep you full. So keep in mind, each detail and aesthetic is planned with care by our officers, reps, and advisors. Take time to breath in the atmosphere, try the food, play the games, socialize with friends, and dance as much as you can; experiences like this in High School don’t come everyday.

– JD Choi (‘18)

Featured Image by JD Choi

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