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This year’s Fremont and Bergan Post Prom bash will look a little different than past years’ events.

Organizers have selected a new theme that they’ve never done before. They’ve hired a nationally touring entertainment act — the biggest act that’s ever performed at the event, says Mandy Broeker, chair of the Post Prom committee.

“We wanted to shake things up this year, go with something totally different that we haven’t tried before, and we’re really excited for what we have planned so far,” said Broeker, who’s serving as chair for the first time this year.

But while the entertainment and decorations will be new, much will remain the same.

The event will still hope to draw upwards of 400 juniors and seniors from Fremont Public Schools and Archbishop Bergan Catholic School, offering dozens of high-end prizes, food and a safe and fun after-prom environment — all offered to students completely free of charge.

“We want to make sure that everybody can attend and that cost isn’t a factor,” Broeker said. “It boils down to just keeping the kids safe and having something fun for them to do.”

“This year it’ll be an event that they can’t go anywhere else to see,” she added.

This year’s theme will be called “Roll With Us,” and will feature Las Vegas-themed decorations and games.

Last year’s theme was “Lake it Easy” — a new take on a prior years’ beach themes with a special emphasis on the area state lakes. There’s also been some spins on Hollywood or entertainment themes. But the Vegas theme is new.

Games and events will include blackjack tables, a music bingo game, a spin-to-win wheel and more.

The entertainment has always been a highlight of the event, organizers say. Two years ago, the event featured a hypnotist who was brought back last year by popular demand. The entertainment this year will be similarly Vegas-themed: nationally known illusionist Reza will be taking the stage.

“He’s a nationally touring illusionist,” Broeker said. “He’s a much bigger act than we’ve ever had perform for Post Prom before.”

Through games and other opportunities, seniors will also have a chance to win a slew of prizes, which has become a main selling point for the Post Prom event over the years.

This year, smaller instant-win prizes, valued from $10 to $25, will be available to the first 300 kids that walk in the door.

Then there are at least 20 grand prizes that will be handed out throughout the night. One senior will win a MacBook computer. Other guests will have opportunities to win tickets to upcoming Kenny Chesney, Carrie Underwood and Cardi B concerts. More prizes include gift cards to various businesses like Sephora, concert tickets and YETI coolers.

“We always try to give as much back to the students as possible,” Broeker said.

There will also be free food, though Broeker said they are still nailing down the specifics. Last year’s event featured options like doughnut and taco trucks.

The annual event typically costs between $15,000 and $20,000 per year to put on, Broeker said, and it takes months of planning, usually starting in the summer, not long after the Post Prom event ends.

Fundraising efforts for this year’s events are ongoing. The event is powered by donations from both local businesses and families, though local businesses tend to be the bigger drivers of donations, organizers have said.

“We would not be able to have a free and safe event for the juniors and seniors of Fremont without our community partners,” Heather Gossett, solicitations chair for the Post Prom committee, told the Tribune last month. “They truly step up to the plate, they knock it out of the park for us every year, which again, gives us this wonderful event that is free for all of the kids and their guests, with food, live entertainment and killer grand prizes.”

Throughout the year, the committee hosts several fundraiser events with area businesses. The next will be at Fremont’s Raising Cane’s branch. On March 20, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., if you make a purchase and mention Post Prom, 15 percent of all sales will go toward the event.

Otherwise, donations can be made at https://www.facfoundation.org/postprom.html.

Administrators are also appreciative of the event.

“It’s a very cooperative effort between our faculties, the parents of both schools and it just creates a great environment for our students,” said Fremont Public Schools Superintendent Mark Shepard. “I think it gives parents peace of mind knowing that their kids are engaged the entire time and that they’re at a fun, healthy activity.”

And Archbishop Bergan Principal Dan Koenig told the Tribune last year that he had personally attended it when he was a student at Bergan.

“I didn’t realize it at the time, but it created such a safe and organized environment for us to have a gathering of our peers after prom was over,” he said last year.

This year’s Post Prom event will occur the night of prom, which is set for April 27. Doors open at midnight and guests will be allowed to enter until 1 a.m. The event will go until 3:30 a.m. The event will take place at Christensen Field.

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