Prom is considered by many as a stepping stone to adulthood and out of one’s high school years into college life. However, Ohio University's ACRN defies this tradition by hosting its own themed prom every year, with this year's being Valentine's Day themed. 

ACRN Prom will feature an art show, a live auction, photo booth and a mobile DJ set. The auction will have items from local businesses for students to “buy,” such as gift cards to Brenen’s Coffee Cafe and Donkey Coffee and Espresso. Admission is $5 at the door and prom attire is highly encouraged. 

“We chose Valentine’s Day as our theme for Prom because it ended up landing on the actual date of it,” Catie Bugos, the PR director of ACRN, said. “All money raised will help fund ACRN’s annual music festival, Lobsterfest that takes place in April at The Union. Last year we had Emo Prom so we thought it’d be a fun idea to do the opposite.”


If You Go:

What: ACRN Prom 

Where: The Union Bar and Grill, 18 W. Union St.

When: Friday, 9 p.m.

Admission: $5 

Though Moonbeau, one of the original headliners, had to cancel its set, aspiring musician Jeremiah Hayes will perform instead.

“It’s an extreme privilege and I’m super grateful that ACRN even considered me,” Hayes said. “I have not had the opportunity to experience an ACRN event and I’m so hyped that this is the first one for me; I love prom. Also, the music I make is definitely on some lip-locking vibes.”

Hayes describes his music as, “alternative R&B mixed with a little indie pop and a sprinkle of jazz influences,” and will perform a mix of classic love songs as well as his own original songs.  

“I’ll be performing a handful of originals like Intergalactic Remedy and The King’s Daughter, along with some lovey-dovey covers that everyone can sing along too,” Hayes said. "But I’m excited to perform those originals because they definitely embody a romantic event like a prom. I’m looking forward to getting super intimate and seeing everyone in the Valentine’s Day state of mind, if you know what I mean.”

Cincinnati musical artist Jody Jones II, as known as GrandAce, will also perform for ACRN Prom. 

“I try to emphasize really giving my all on stage and having some humor in there when I can,” Jones, a freelance videographer and music artist, said. “I love to work on music alone because it lets me try out a ton of things; lets me scream, jump around, do whatever I feel without judgement, which in turn makes me more familiar with the music.”

Jones classifies his music as alternative rap and is excited to play his newest songs at prom. 

“I love going to OU because every single time I go, I see a mix of old and new faces and the feeling is really warm and inviting,” Jones said. “The fact that Athens is a college town and most people are students helps because we all know what each other is going through. It’s made even more special going out (because) you get to decompress for a little bit and not worry about bills, exams, interpersonal relationships and whatever else. I love it.”