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Group of Davison parents hosting private prom for seniors

DAVISON, MI — A group of parents in Davison are taking matters into their own hands in providing the Davison High School senior class with a private prom.

Davison’s official prom ceremony was canceled due to COVID-19 restrictions. Since then, Jennifer Allen, mother of five and a former Davison graduate herself, has teamed up with four other parents to organize their own prom, fixed with a roaming photographer, dinner, photo booth and dance floor.

Allen anticipates more than 100 seniors will have interest when tickets go on sale Thursday, April 8. Only senior Davison students will be allowed – no dates or students from other graduating classes.

The group of parents reached out to Davison High School Principal Ron Jacobs before deciding to set this up. Allen said Jacobs gave them his blessing since the prom ceremony is scheduled after the seniors’ last day of school.

“That was my big worry. I am not here to alienate anyone,” Allen, a mother of five, said. “Quite honestly, we all understand why the school can’t do a prom. Their hands are tied.”

Davison Community Schools did not immediately respond to requests for comment on this event.

Current Michigan gathering rules dictate that outdoor gatherings cannot have more than 300 people, according to Michigan’s Coronavirus State Orders and Directives website.

Mask mandates and social distancing rules are still expected to be active in May, too, Genesee County Health Department Deputy Health Officer Kayleigh Blaney said.

“Regardless of what age you are it is important to take your comfortability level and medical history into consideration anytime you are choosing to do anything right now,” Blaney said. “We know that about 25 percent of our cases right now are in the 0-18 age group.”

The group of parents plans to abide by Michigan’s guidelines and say they understand that there will be people who’d rather not go. It fully depends on the individual and whether they want to take any risks that go along with gathering, Blaney said.

If guidelines are followed, it’s lawful, Blaney said. Allen is not worried about the risks involved with gathering during a pandemic.

“The chances that a high school student is going to be seriously ill and or die from this is so small,” Allen said. “I feel like they have a better chance of getting into a car accident on the way to prom than getting sick at the prom.”

After spreading the news on Facebook, Allen has received support from other parents who want to make donations, offer dresses and donate food. Even Davison Mayor Tim Bishop will be donating B-Dogs hot dogs at the end of the night.

“We are just doing something to support the kids and what they are going through,” Bishop said. “It is important that these kids at least have a memory for their senior year with all the restrictions.”

Allen is holding out hope that gathering restrictions ease further before the prom in May. They are keeping their options open as vaccinations continue in Genesee County and the rest of the country.

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