Wildcats mingle at the 22-23 winter dance


Claire Chang and Stephanie Khoury

   On Feb. 4, 2023, Wildcats mingled on the floor of the West Ranch gymnasium from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Sadie’s All You Need is Love Winter Dance. The semi-formal event included three hours of partying with the DJ, competing in arcade games, striking poses in the photo booth and feasting on Valentine’s themed candy, pastries and refreshments. Students wore formal attire as they danced with friends or their date.

   The winter dance was a Sadie Hawkins dance: an informal dance hosted at school where women break stereotypes and ask out their date. Sophia Lachinov, a West Ranch sophomore, voiced her opinion of the theme, saying, “I think the theme [was unique about the experience] because I’ve never been to a Sadie Hawkins dance.” 

   Although most students were unfamiliar with this type of dance, many still took part in the tradition. One participant was junior Madisyn Velicsanyi, who asked Ryan Shalkevich to accompany her to the dance. 

   Velicsanyi arranged a unique, multi-faceted way to ask out her date. “I asked Ryan during his baseball practice, and gave him pens throughout the day,” she explained. “I had ten people give him pens throughout the day that went along with [my] poster, then asked for his autograph.”

   Although some students were escorted by their partners, others decided to ask their friends to be their dates instead. “I actually got asked out by my friends,” junior Ashley Baek said, detailing what occurred among her friends. “My friends just casually asked me, ‘Do you want to be my date?’ and I was like ‘oh yeah, sure!’”

   Regardless of whether or not students went alone or accompanied by others, the wide range of activities enticed all guests. ASB provided students with a variety of Valentine’s candies, fruity refreshments, hot chocolate and a beignet truck. While snacking, students were able to engage in dancing, lounging and games of air hockey. 

   Decorations also enhanced the students’ dance experience. Heart-themed decor surrounding the large dance floor added to the Valentine’s ambience, while a chandelier overlooked students and their dance battles. The blacktop-turned-lounge had plush, red seating that created a cozy atmosphere. Shalkevich commented on his favorite decor. “I didn’t expect the heaters outside, that was really nice,” he said.

   In the dance’s last few minutes, the DJ played a final slow dance for students to sweetly conclude a memorable winter dance experience.