For African-American high school seniors growing up in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963, attending prom wasn't an option. At the time, civil rights issues were front and center and marches for desegregation and equal opportunities were happening often. In fact, a youth run protest against segregation that May is what many students believe to be the defining act that caused prom to be cancelled. Now, 50 years later, those students finally got their dance.
Getting their hair done, picking out a new outfit, and dancing to The Temptations and Etta James with the one they love finally became a reality for those senior students - who are now senior citizens. "It's really a much more pleasant event because we can afford the attire, we have no problem getting back and forth," former student Eugene Arms said. "It makes you appreciate everything when we were children. The sacrifices people made."
Although James Madison High School doesn't have a school organized prom, remember there is nothing to stop you from dressing up, grabbing your friends and loved ones and dancing the night away. Memories can be made wherever and however you want.
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