Senior Fashion Show to take place May 11

The+theme+and+logo+for+the+2021+Senior+Fashion+Show+is+Mask-erade.+The+show+will+take+place+on+May+11+at+the+Rockleigh+Country+Club.

The theme and logo for the 2021 Senior Fashion Show is Mask-erade. The show will take place on May 11 at the Rockleigh Country Club.

Sarah Buttikofer, Staff Editor

Co-chairs Kathleen Bonner and Mary Anne Kearney started planning the annual Pascack Valley Senior Fashion Show back in September, knowing that this year was going to be different than usual due to the ongoing pandemic.

“We started planning this back in September, because we knew we needed to look for a venue early on that was going to be able to accommodate us depending on the state guidelines and restrictions due to the pandemic,” Bonner said.

Bonner said that the fashion show will take place on Tuesday, May 11, at the Rockleigh Country Club.

“Normally it’s in the fall, so it had to be pushed back to the Spring, which gave us hope,” Kearney said. “Then around the holidays we weren’t sure, with the second wave of COVID coming, if we were going to be able to have it. We had started working on it right away in September. We were nervous that it might not happen.”

Bonner said that there is also outside access at the venue to sit outside and eat if one chooses to.

“Masks are required, we are limited in the amount of people that can come to the event, and we have to follow the state guidelines,” Bonner said. “We are having staggered start times to try to limit the flow of people, when everybody first gets there, before they get to their tables. We have the entire venue, so there is also room to space out.”

It was a little more difficult this year in getting merchants to donate and sponsor the event because they’ve been hurting financially during the pandemic, but we did get a lot of generous donations from local merchants.”

— Kathleen Bonner, Fashion Show Co-chair

Kearney said that sadly this year less stores could lend clothes than usual because of the pandemic and the spread of germs.

“It was a little more difficult this year in getting merchants to donate and sponsor the event because they’ve been hurting financially during the pandemic, but we did get a lot of generous donations from local merchants,” Bonner said.

Patty Siegel said that she helped organize the fashion show and was able to get the support of several stores. Many local stores lent clothes, including Ridgewood, Westwood, Closter, Montvale, the Garden State Plaza, and some department stores.

“I had information about what we [were] looking to do for the fashion show, and I contacted and went into each of the stores when I could at the end of January,” Siegel said. “I asked [each store] if they would be willing to participate.”

Siegel had a flyer that she showed to each store explaining what they were trying to accomplish, and that they were looking for 10 to 12 outfits per model.

“We do have a category this year where students were given the option to wear their own fashion, whether that be their junior prom dress that they never got to wear or a favorite outfit of theirs,” Bonner said. “We also got permission from the sports director, Shawn Buchanan, and if they were on a team that they could wear their Pascack Valley uniform.”

Kearney said that she wanted to show the students that “if you all work together for the common good, you can do almost anything.”

“The main struggle with organizing it was the inability to meet with people in-person,” Bonner said. “Normally there is usually an assembly where we talk to the students and the parents of the committee who are volunteering to run it.” 

Siegel said that there was a mix of stores that were willing to participate, some being “dressy” stores and others having casual outfits. 

…if you all work together for the common good, you can do almost anything.”

— Mary Anne Kearney

“There were stores that could not participate this year because of COVID, but there is also a good fair amount that are willing to participate,” Siegel said. “I met with the managers, discussed, and then I followed up with each of them to confirm that they are willing to provide however many outfits, and the dates and times that we could bring the girls and the boys in to try on the outfits.”

Bonner said that they do not have a date for the dress rehearsal yet, but it will most likely be sometime the week before the show.

“The seniors will go in [on their assigned date and time] to try on outfits, be fitted, and then they leave the store,” Siegel said. “Then one of the moms will come in to pick up the outfits the day before the fashion show and then return them after the fashion show.”

Bonner said that the theme for this year’s fashion show is “Mask-erade,” with a play on the word masks.

“We are going to try to order Masquerades on the sticks for them to use, and they do have to wear masks when they are on the runway,” Bonner said. “We are not sure yet if they are able to take them off for the pictures at the end, we haven’t worked through that yet.”

Kearney said that in past years, usually about 50 students signed up, but this year there’s almost 170 students participating. She thinks the large number of students participating is because everybody wants to see each other, be together as the class of 2021 before the seniors go off to college, and show some school spirit.

Kearney said that they will be keeping in contact with the students via their school emails and that she can’t wait to see everybody “smiling and having fun.”

“[Since] all of [the] kids have not had a normal high school experience this past year, ” Siegel said, “I’m excited we are going to get to do something that is typically done every year, and it’s a great fundraiser.”