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'Micro' prom capacity comes in just below Wolf's restrictions

Students arrive at the Susquehannock High School Prom at the Valencia Ballroom Saturday, May 4, 2019. Bill Kalina photo

A mini prom — or rather, "micro" prom — for 22 contest winners will take place this Saturday for York County high school seniors.

Students who missed out on prom will be arriving at the York Galleria Mall Saturday for dinner, photos and dancing, with all food, drink and prizes donated by area businesses. 

A pair of two tickets cost $150.

The event capacity just inched under the governor’s order Wednesday that no more than 25 people gather indoors to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Eleven couples from schools including York County School of Technology, Northeastern, Eastern York and South Western high schools are attending.

The Party Palooza is hosting the event, brought about by owner Karen Sawyer, who also started the York County adopt-a-senior Facebook page back in April.

The page of 6,100 members was created to honor high school seniors with gifts and recognition while the county was on stay-at-home orders and unable to host end-of-year events and celebrations.

More:In graduation season like no other, 'adopt-a-senior' group honors York County high-schoolers

Dallastown High School senior Abrianna Gentile opens items from a gift bag presented to her by Lindsay Barshinger and her daughter Addison, 11, at Gentile's Yoe home Tuesday, April 28, 2020. Addison and her mother Lindsay participated in an adopt-a-graduate program within the school district. Bill Kalina photo

Sawyer said the prom was originally for 25 winners chosen from the group from a May contest, along with their plus-ones, but several opted out for reasons such as safety, travel, work, and family emergencies.

"It really was a blessing in disguise," she said, because otherwise there would have been too many, and she would have had to cancel.

News of the new state restrictions this week have thrown a wrench in some county prom plans. Central York had to cancel its Aug. 8 prom at the Valencia Ballroom and Out Door Country Club — which had also scheduled a prom for high school seniors Aug. 8 — is standing by.

When reached Friday, Communications and Special Events Coordinator Susie Pickett said the club is still considering an outdoor event, which would allow for up to 250 people.

More:Prom is on for York County juniors and seniors

"We are in the process of making that decision," she said, noting that she expects to know more on Monday.

Sawyer said she wanted to do her prom to make a difference in her community.

“We aren’t just a business in the area, we live here too," she said in a news release. "We want to give back to a few seniors that lost their prom and missed out on such a big part of their high school social life.”

At The Party Palooza's event, masks will be required and tables will be spaced to observe social distancing. Each table will only have six chairs so guests can spread out. Students can dance with their dates, with no partner switching.

Before entering, there will also be temperature checks and a health questionnaire. Food will be individually served to prevent contamination from buffet-style.

Doors will open at 6 p.m.,with the event running until 10 p.m.