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RJ Clayton selecting a prize. Photo by Brooke Gilmore

On Friday, July 17, Salida High School Seniors gathered to celebrate Prom in a most non-traditional way, marking the first time in months that students had gathered for an organized school event.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic known COVID-19, the traditional junior and senior class prom was canceled for the 2020 school year. The unique parking lot prom was the first organized school event students have attended since the start of the pandemic. Its format allowed for safe reconnection.

As cars arrived, the students got to go inside one car after another to pick prizes. Some students showed up in prom attire while others took a more tropical approach.

There was a contest held for best-decorated person or car. Parents were tasked with choosing the winners. Ultimately Rebecca Kerns won the grand prize and plans on sharing it with her friend Reece White.

Overall, students maintained social distancing guidelines as well as wore masks, some even made the best of the reason for the event’s format, giving their car’s masks.

One thing was clear, though these students’ lives have been impacted by the pandemic, their strong community bond has not.

Featured image: Rebecca Kerns and Reece White show off their car decorations and costumes for the contest. Photo by Brooke Gilmore

The back half of Hannah Rhude’s decoration entry. Photo by Brooke Gilmore.

A contest entry by Hannah Rhude. Photo by Brooke Gilmore.

Maddie Porter shows off her car’s mask. Photo by Brooke Gilmore.


The Back of Maddie Porter’s car. Photo by Brooke Gilmore.