Proms take a little more planning than typical Saturday night dates.
There are corsages, boutonnieres, reservations, tickets, after proms and more to worry about.
Other than working up the courage to land a date in the first place, picking out a tuxedo or prom dress is probably the biggest hurdle to clear before prom night.
Dresses such as the one pictured at left have been flying off the racks at Fashions on Main in Falconer in recent weeks as local high school students prepare for their proms.
P-J photo by Scott Shelters
Girls have been coming into Fashions on Main in Falconer since January to pick out dresses. Not all of them chose to get a head start, however.
In years past, girls have come in on prom day to buy dresses. Sometimes they've had their hair done already.
It's fine for them to buy dresses at the last minute, but it leaves no time for alterations.
"We have altered up until the night before," said Vickie Rossetti, owner of Fashions on Main. "That's because my seamstress is wonderful."
Most girls make their way into the store in April to pick out dresses. Those who wait longer can hold up their dates. Boys can't wait until prom day to visit a tuxedo shop for the first time.
Before this year, boys could order tuxedos three days before prom and get them in time. Tuxedo companies now charge late fees, making it imperative that boys place their orders at least a week before prom.
Getting in sooner than that can help. Tuxedo companies run out of specific rentals for certain dates each year.
Due to dress indecision, Rossetti has a stack of orders made by boys who got measured, picked out their tuxedos and made their deposits, but have no idea what color they need to match.
"Some boys wait until the last minute, but it's not their fault if the girl hasn't picked out a dress yet," Rossetti said. "I have a couple boys on hold right now."
Other boys come in carrying their dates' dresses or with their dates in tow.
Then, there are the girls who won't let their dates see their dresses prior to prom night. They'll send their dates with swatches or nothing at all.
Others rely on cellphone photos of dresses. That's not always a good thing, according to Rossetti.
"Depending on the phone, the color can be deceiving," she said. "There are a lot of phone calls made in here."
Students will sometimes seek a little help from their parents, many of whom pay for the dresses or tuxedos. Parents will sometimes call Fashions on Main, set up their child's appointment if necessary, and then come in after the visit to pay for the order.
Some customers don't really care if they match their dates perfectly. Boys who want to get in and get an order placed will pick neutral colors, the most popular of which is silver.
Guys don't just have to worry about matching their dates. They have to find prom-appropriate tuxedos mixed in with models better suited for older men or wedding goers.
"For girls it's a little easier because we don't have those older styles for the most part," Rossetti said. "That's not the case for the guys. They have tuxedos available to order for couples celebrating their 60th wedding anniversaries."
Bow ties, larger peaks, tails and double-breasted tuxedos have pretty much gone out of style for proms, Rossetti said. White and notch tuxedos have grown in popularity this year, however.
Popular dress styles have changed once again as well.
"The really full ball gowns are what's really popular this year," Rossetti said. "Last year, it was the opposite. They were all buying slinky, tight-fitting dresses."
May tends to be the busiest month for Fashions on Main. Students flock to the store after school on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and during the day on Saturdays.
Student-athletes have a hard time fitting prom preparation into their schedules, making it necessary for Rossetti to take appointments outside of her store's regular hours.
Whichever models prom goers decide on, they'd better make up their minds soon. Those who wait too long might find themselves picking from dresses and suits in their parents' closets.