Lawrence students who are graduating from high school will have a chance to win prizes at a party thrown by their parents.
High school graduation is about two weeks away, and parents of Lawrence seniors are planning an all-night party to celebrate.
The party, dubbed "Project Graduation '96," starts the night of May 26. Graduation ceremonies are set for 7:30 p.m. at Kansas University's Memorial Stadium. In case of rain, the ceremony will be held at Allen Fieldhouse.
To provide a safe atmosphere for graduates, parents have worked for months on the party, which will be at the Granada, 1020 Mass. Businesses have been generous in their support of the party, which will feature drawings for prizes throughout the night.
"They've been really, really wonderful, and very supportive," said Sue Booth, co-chair of the party's publicity committee. "Of course, we're still looking for additional donations."
Among the grand prizes is a $500 scholarship donated by the Lawrence Journal-World for students continuing their education. The Journal-World also has underwritten the cost of renting the Granada.
Mike and Linda Wildgen have donated a $250 graduation award. A previously owned car has been donated by Crown Chevrolet, and D&D Tire will outfit the car with new tires.
A Seadoo, which is a personal watercraft, has been donated by KLZR radio station. And Tow Go Trailer company in Tonganoxie will provide a trailer for the Seadoo for cost.
"All of these will be chosen by drawing at the party," Booth said.
In addition, Hallmark Cards has provided $250 for food and decorations, and DCCCA has given a donation of $400.
The hundreds of other prizes range from a color television set to gift certificates for haircuts and from sunglasses to a basketball autographed by the Kansas University men's team.
Cash prizes will be given every half-hour, Booth said.
Doors of the Granada will be open from 10 p.m. May 26 to 5 a.m. May 27. The official party runs from 10:30 p.m. to 4:30 a.m.
"Students are welcome to come anytime after 10," said Jane Johnston, one of four parents on the Project Graduation '96 steering committee. "There will be country line dance lessons from 10 to 10:30."
The party is open only to Lawrence graduates, and once graduates leave the party, they will not be allowed to return. And graduates should be prepared to show a photo identification, Johnston said.
The first prizes will be awarded at 11 p.m., and students who arrive before midnight will have twice as many chances at prizes as those who arrive later.
"Prizes of all sizes will be awarded throughout the evening," Johnston said.
The last hurrah
Tickets for the Lawrence graduation party will be on sale from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 21 and 22 in the commons area of Lawrence High School and after graduation practice the afternoon of May 23 at Kansas University's Memorial Stadium.
Tickets also will be available at Lawrence Alternative High School through May 23.
Tickets are $4 in advance and $5 at the door. All proceeds from ticket sales go directly for prizes.
Doors at the Granada, 1020 Mass., will be open from 10 p.m. May 26 to 5 a.m. May 27 for Lawrence graduates.