The most important countdown of the year has fallen to under seven days. That’s right: Bethel’s NJROTC Military Ball is in less than a week! Right now boys are buying corsages and rushing to get the shiniest ribbons and ranks for their uniform; girls are eating mints for meals in preparation for Saturday.
Since midterms closed, the unit has been prepping to make their eighth annual ball the most memorable one so far. One may ask, well what’s the difference? Same script, same location, simply different faces and names. In fact, this year is so exciting because it is drastically different from previous balls.
This is the first year the BHS NJROTC unit has been recognized as a battalion instead of a company. This means that we now have a battalion commander, as well as two subornate company commanders. And as the size of the unit swells, the Waterview Ballroom, where we have continuously held the ball, seems to shrink. Henceforth, this year’s ball will be held in a new location. The Matrix, the new venue, has a modern, sophisticated feel. Finally, the ball will be held on a Saturday instead of Friday.
Despite all these changes, the unit has stuck to the same strategy concerning ball preparation: for those with moving parts in the ball, ball practice will be held every day after school. During ball practice the entire script will be practiced, perfected, and played out. On Thursday and Friday of this week these cadets will travel to the Matrix to run through the script on location.
Additionally, every night Monday through Friday, dance practice is held in the main lobby, from 7-9 p.m.. Cadets have the opportunity to learn dances such as the waltz, fox trot, meringue, salsa, tango, and swing.
To further prepare for the ball, the unit’s Lady Leadership club held a Q&A meeting on everything from dresses, to dancing, to that dreaded goodnight kiss. Furthermore, the junior class created two separate checklists – one for boys, one for girls – for the months and days leading up to the ball, the night before the ball, and the day of the ball.
This year’s ball is marked with change, but come Saturday, it will be remembered for its excellence.