Adina Mayo – Mustangs Ahead
(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- On Friday, Jan. 10, the LRHS Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC) program held their annual Winter Formal at the Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club from 6 -11 p.m.
The Formal has five main parts: The receiving line, the ceremonial toasts and Color Guard, the honoring of the guests, dinner, and dancing. All the functions serve to teach cadets the proper procedure and etiquette at formal events.
Junior Natalie Merrill, the Battalion Executive Officer (XO), oversaw organizing the event.
“I had to be very organized. Once I had a timeline and a plan, it was a lot easier to get together,” said Merrill. “The most difficult part was tying it all together with the music and the Color Guard and the ceremonial parts.”
Senior Ethan Nicholls, the Battalion Commander (BC), has been in the program for four years and has seen the changes throughout the years.
“A lot of the formalities have changed for the better, along with organization of the festivities. Like my freshman year, we had a DJ and it was terrible,” said Nicholls. “This year, our Battalion Commander S-1 organized the music, and everyone seemed to enjoy it.”
Junior Rachel Gonzalez, the Battalion S-1, “I really like the meal, and it was fun to be there with my friends. Plus, the music was good, and I had a good time dancing with my friend.”
Master Sergeant William Cassidy is one of two Army Instructors for the JROTC program.
“The best about this ball, for the both the male and female cadets, is for them to understand all the preparation that is involved from hair to makeup and gowns to corsages. Plus, they must pick up their dates and coordinate transportation,” stated Cassidy. “Then, they have to go to a formal event and think about more than just themselves, especially the boys.”