Winter Formal Returns ‘A Night Under the Stars’


Dheeksha Bhima Reddy

Students assemble in a line in front of the mini coffee shop. The coffee shop offered many options such as hot chocolate, and the crowd favorite, Affogato, which one of three people at the dance ordered, according to the barista.

Winter formal on Feb 5. in Hangar 21 marked the first winter dance since the COVID-19 outbreak. Over 500 students danced the night away under the twinkling of the dangling string lights within star-themed decor that furnished the vintage aesthetic, according to assistant principal Amy Paulsen.

The dance’s dessert bar included a quartet of small pastries and cakes, while the mini coffee shop included delicacies for caffeine lovers.

Located at the Fullerton Airport, Hangar 21 provided a unique aesthetic: an old, renovated airplane hangar. The venue also offered both a cozy indoor space and a large outdoor area. However, the modern and contemporary look of Hangar 21 caused challenges in deciding the formal theme but eventually chose the popular theme ‘A Night Under the Stars’.

“Although we initially planned to do a ‘Great Gatsby’ themed winter formal, our plan changed due to the venue,” junior class president and junior Caroline Wang said. “There was unfortunately a really big plane there that wouldn’t fit in with the original theme. However, our amazing sophomore president and vice president found other ways to create a theme that would fit the venue.”

To maintain CDC guidelines, students had to adhere to strict precautions, such as mandatory mask usage indoors.

However, some students did not adhere to proper mask rules within the indoor area of the venue, according to sophomore James Kim.

“I wish more people would have worn masks, but for my first dance, it was really fun,” freshman Carol Chiang said.

Filling out the COVID-19 safety form was required in order to enter the venue. The form requested students and other guests to submit a picture of their vaccination card with confirmation of their booster shot or vaccination or have a negative test verification that adheres to the California Department of Public Health guidelines.

This is the first winter formal after the pandemic so it’s really important that people really enjoyed themselves with their loved ones.”

— Michael Shen

“We really hoped that the students would enjoy the dance,” sophomore vice president and sophomore Michael Shen said. “This is the first winter formal after the pandemic so it’s really important that people really enjoyed themselves with their loved ones.”