GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – With milestone events like prom and graduation, the end of the school year can be a memorable time for high school students. The pandemic threw a curveball very few of us saw coming.

Green Bay Southwest High School is one of many Green Bay Area Public Schools choosing to not have a prom this year. After the school said no, parents are stepping in to make the end of the year unforgettable for students.

Mary Novotny is part of a group of eight parents organizing a parent-sponsored junior prom this year.

“Everyone had a rough year. High school students lost out on so many opportunities that the rest of us take for granted. Junior prom is a milestone for many Americans, and these kids weren’t getting a chance to do that, so we wanted to give them an opportunity to make those memories,” says Novotny.

Parents are planning the junior prom without any help from the school. They are using social media and relying on students to help spread the word.

“We’re going to try to make it as close to a normal prom as we can. We do have a Dj and a photographer lined up, and it’s just going to be a prom,” says Novotny.

“I was happy that somebody was doing something for us, because you don’t really see that a lot,” says junior Nasya Cohen.

“I’m going in a big group with a bunch of my friends,” says junior Sosolia Evraets.

Students say they’re looking forward to the memories they will make at prom this year.

“I can look back in a couple years and remember how much fun we had, even if it was during a pandemic,” says Cohen.

Parents have camped out in parking lots to sell prom tickets, since they aren’t allowed to on school grounds.

The kids have been incredible. They’re so thankful. They’re excited. It’s good to see our kids excited again,” says Novotny.

Green Bay Southwest’s parent-organized prom will be at Riverside Ball on June 18. Parents say so far about 80 students have signed up to attend the parent-sponsored prom.

The group’s next fundraising event is set for June 1. For more information on Green Bay Southwest’s parent-sponsored prom, click here.