Arts & Entertainment

West Essex High School Hosts Fifth Annual Intergenerational Prom

ec3f4e3fa3114a389e33_Screen_Shot_2018-04-14_at_11.15.29_PM.jpg
Jack Rizzuto and his granddaughter, Lexi Faust, are named king and queen of the West Essex High School Intergenerational Prom.
7c5a9dfb84085c54db18_IMG_5980.JPG
Eileen and John Campolattaro win a prize for being high school sweethearts who went to prom together in the 1950s. Credits: Gail Bottone
984e1a0ed3cf4c5ab394_IMG_5981.JPG
Carole and Tony Turi win a prize at the West Essex High School senior citizen prom for being a couple who attended their high school senior prom together.
619e7564551cb834eeab_IMG_5945.JPG
West Essex Regional High School Board of Education members, Anthony Rubinich, Ann Fahey and Cindy Egan enjoy the school’s senior citizen prom. Credits: Gail Bottone
07f142c7f39fee94ad25_Screen_Shot_2018-04-14_at_11.15.57_PM.jpg
Michael Arnold draws a caricature of Lorna at the West Essex senior citizen prom. Credits: Gail Bottone
e32dce054adf0cb6ac97_IMG_5954.JPG
Senior citizens enjoy the West Essex High School intergenerational prom. Credits: Gail Bottone
8d712f5fac9301a9afef_Screen_Shot_2018-04-14_at_11.19.31_PM.jpg
West Essex High School student, Lexi Faust, enjoys being at the intergenerational prom with her grandparents, Jack and Pat Rizzuto.
c3b64af6cd7e9686d81c_IMG_5989.JPG
66260161d5ccfa7269f9_IMG_5965.JPG
f3236e664314398f4a05_IMG_5963.JPG
28403b46e7f281e2820b_IMG_5960.JPG
55c116f2e27857f68c5d_IMG_5959.JPG
2f312497641253522d2b_IMG_5958.JPG
0d33cb818f7092277588_IMG_5957.JPG
2dc492a6cf4141ce8f12_IMG_5953.JPG
270af99919380028884e_IMG_5951.JPG
69fc4c79b8d9d851ad87_IMG_5946.JPG
ec3f4e3fa3114a389e33_Screen_Shot_2018-04-14_at_11.15.29_PM.jpg

NORTH CALDWELL, NJ — “A Starry Night” was the theme of the West Essex High School (WEHS) fifth annual intergenerational prom on Thursday, and “starry” it was with the star balloons, star table decorations, star performance by the high school jazz band and the stars of the night—the senior citizens and high school students who ate, danced and spent time together.

The WEHS gym was alive with music, food and entertainment for the nearly 120 people at the event, which included dinner, music, dancing, photo booth and a caricaturist.

The intergenerational prom is a school-initiated outreach event focusing on integrating the senior community with the school community. WEHS student volunteers helped in all aspects of the night, greeting guests and making them feel welcome at their school.

Sign Up for E-News

Students and guests ate together, talked and shared stories, danced and enjoyed the entertainment, including a jazz band performance under the direction of Anthony Fabrizo.

One highlight of the night was the choosing of prom king and queen, which included WEHS senior Lexi Faust as prom queen and her grandfather, Jack Rizzuto, as prom king. The teachers who chose the king and queen said that they were impressed with the affection Faust showed to her grandparents, and Andrea Trombino, administrative assistant, said she was delighted to see Faust dancing with her grandfather.

Another highlight was the gifts presented to two couples at the event who had gone to their own high school proms together. The proud recipients were Fairfield’s John and Eileen Campolattaro and Caldwell’s Tony and Carole Turi. They received gift bags that included Spirit Wear and WEHS coffee mugs.

The Campolattaros started dating on Feb. 19, 1954, when they were only 16 years old and attending Barringer High School in Newark. The could got married in 1961 and had four children.

“It feels like only yesterday,” the 53-year Fairfield residents said.

The Turis attended their senior prom together at the Westmont Country Club; Carole went to Bloomfield High School, and Tony went to Passaic Valley High School. They got married, had three children, and currently have 11 grandchildren. Their granddaughter, Isabel Turi, who went to Columbia High School in Maplewood, also had her prom at the Westmont Country Club.

The Turis had such a good time at the prom last year that they brought their friend, Sandra Kovats of Riverdale, to join them.

“This is beautiful,” said Kovats. “I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

Doris Hochstein also was at the prom last year and said she had such a good time that she was looking forward to coming back this year.

“The food was excellent,” she said.

Also in attendance were Fairfield Police Chief Anthony Manna and North Caldwell Police Chief Mark Deuer, who served food at the event, and members of the West Essex Board of Education.

“The night was wonderful, and it gave residents an opportunity to enjoy the facilities,” said board member Anthony Rubinich. “Without their support, this could not be possible.”

“This wonderful event is a way of giving back to the community, and I like watching everyone enjoying themselves,” said board member Cindy Egan.

“This is a great event that brings adult seniors and high school students together to socialize and have fun together,” said board member Ann Fahey.

WEHS principal Caesar Diliberto was also present, along councilmen and councilwomen from surrounding areas.

Guests included members of the Caldwell’s Marion Manor, Sunrise at West Essex, Woodcrest of Fairfield and Fairfield’s Golden Agers. Guests also included students’ grandparents and friends.

Barbara Dallegro, who had her caricature drawn, said that she had a great time and that “everything was so nice.”

“This is outstanding,” said Evelyn O’Reilly, a Fairfield Golden Ager. “This is the second year that I came. You can’t beat it. Kids have done an outstanding job getting this all together.”

Another Golden Ager, Josephine Dapuzzo, said, “It is a lot of fun and brings back a lot of memories.”

Ida Young of Woodcrest agreed, stating that the event was “lovely,” and that she was “having such a great time.”

Students Catherine Marino, Gabriella Benevenga and Lea Bachenheimer, members of the jazz band, said that they enjoyed playing for the senior citizens. Nicole Sleais also thought that the event was fun.

Many local businesses helped with the event, including Phil Maestoso, owner of Hollywood Pizzeria and Restaurant, who catered dinner; Beautiful Creations, which donated balloons and the archway; Pomptonian Food Service, which donated the dessert and coffee; Legacy Studio, which prints the WEHS yearbook and provided the photo booth for the event; caricaturist Michael Arnold of Speedydoodle Studios; Tim Hughes, the DJ and a former WEHS student; and Stop and Shop.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

West Essex

Free Flavors Soft Serve Ice Cream (Jr. Cup or Cone) With Coupon

May 23, 2018

Fairfield, NJ - Flavors Homemade Ice Cream is offering a FREE soft serve ice cream (jr. cup or cone) when you spend $10 or more with coupon.

Flavors Homemade Is located at 653 Rt 46 West (1.98 mi) in Fairfield, New Jersey 07004 next to Jose Tejas.

*Homemade Ice Cream

*Italian Ice

*Gelato 

*Fresh waffles 

*ice ...

Evolve Cycle And Fitness Presale Happening Now!

CALDWELL, NJ - Evolve Cycle and Fitness is now offering 10 classes for only $90. That’s only $9 a class when you purchase before its official Grand Opening on Friday, June 1, 2018. 

Only two weeks left to take advantage of this limited time offer! Call Martha at 973-979-5919 or click here to sign up.

Evolve Cycle and Fitness is a Premier Fitness Boutique ...

West Essex Softball's Lilly James Named Athlete of the Week

May 20, 2018

NORTH CALDWELL, NJ — In her senior season at West Essex High School, Athlete of the Week Lilly James has made an impact as both a physical and vocal leader on the West Essex softball team.

“[I’m] just staying confident with myself and trying to push my confidence into everyone else so they can have the same amount and hit as well as me and my other teammates so we can ...

Montclair HS Student Reported Sexual Assault in All-Gender Bathroom, Officials Say

May 17, 2018

MONTCLAIR, NJ - According to published reports on Wednesday, Montclair Police officials are investigating allegations of sexual assault reported to have occurred in a bathroom at Montclair High School.

Montclair police officials state that officers received a report about an incident at the high school of a sexual nature that occurred around 3:18 p.m. on Monday. The ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_de3cab0520da333c49fa_ellen_barry_photo

Thu, May 24, 6:30 PM

West Caldwell Public Library, West Caldwell

"The Infinite Variety of Shakespeare's Women"

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_f6336b4ae60182e89776_roseland_library_logo

Fri, May 25, 9:00 AM

Roseland Public Library , Roseland

Basics of Microsoft Word, Excel, and other tech ...

Education

Carousel_image_f6336b4ae60182e89776_roseland_library_logo

Mon, May 28, 6:00 PM

Roseland Public Library , Roseland

Drop-In Tech Night

Education

CCM Golf Team Sweeps Conference and Region Titles

May 19, 2018

RANDOLPH, NJ —For the second time since 2007, the County College of Morris (CCM) Titans Golf Team has won both the conference and region championships in the same season, earning them a place in the national championship.

The team’s overall record for the year was 36-1 with the only loss coming at the hands of Ocean County College by two strokes back in mid-March.

Galloping ...

Obituaries

Jan 7, 1927 - May 10, 2018
Benjamin Cappiello, 91, of Roseland, died on May 10, 2018 at home surrounded by his loving ...
Read more

Vehicular Homicide Charges for Driver of Paramus School Bus

May 24, 2018

MORRISTOWN, NJ - The driver of a school bus involved in a crash on Route 80 last week that killed two people faces two counts of second-degree vehicular homicide/death by auto, it was announced today.

The driver, Hudy Muldrow, 77, of Woodland Park, attempted to make an illegal U-Turn on the highway in an attempt to find his way to Waterloo Village, the planned destination of the bus that was ...

A Royal Pain

I went to a big wedding over the weekend.  It was in England.

I like to think I was invited, but according to the Royal Guards and the Thames Valley Police I was not.  But more about that later.

You see, not too long ago I received an evite addressed to me from H&M@royalwedbot.co.uk.  Curiously, it was in my spam folder with a warning message. For an evite it was pretty ...