It was a time when dinosaurs roamed the Earth, volcanoes spewed fiery lava and pterodactyls roamed the skies searching for prey.
But upon closer inspection, the dinosaurs are made of painted cardboard, and the volcano is fashioned out of yards of draped tulle, making the perfect background for Valley City High School’s elaborate 2012 prom theme: “From the Beginning of Time to the End of Time.”
“We just thought a prehistoric theme would be fun, and ‘the end of time’ has a little bit to do with 2012,” said VCHS art teacher and prom advisor Carol Foth.
Junior class members thought up the concept, which Foth said started out as a joke.
“Somebody said ‘Wouldn’t it be funny to do a prehistoric theme?’ and ‘Oh, then we could walk out of T-Rex’s mouth!’ and I said, ‘Wait a minute, back the truck up, this sounds like a great idea.’”
The theme is a sort of walk through history that the junior class has been planning since January and painting set pieces for since late March. Prom-goers will parade out of the mouth of a giant Tyrannosaurus Rex, around a backdrop of palm trees and caveman drawings, through a cave, past a wooly mammoth and into the Ice Age.
“We’re always pretty elaborate, it gets a little carried away,” Foth said. “I don’t think we’ve ever done anything the size of that T-Rex, which is ten feet up to the highest point.”
Junior Tonya Van Dyke said, “after we saw (Mrs. Foth’s) drawings, there was definitely no doubt that it’s what we wanted to do.”
Van Dyke added that her favorite part of decorating was “glittering” the set pieces.
“We’ve always tried to do something a little bit different, coming up with bizarre themes,” Foth said. “We don’t have the usual proms.”
Past years have included themes ranging from the movie ‘Casablanca’ to a haunted house with giant bats. According to Foth, even the company who DJs the prom is excited to see what Valley City will come up with next. “Every year they say they have never been anywhere where the ideas are so original or so extravagant,” she said.