Insufficient ticket sales push Morp to the brink of cancellation

Senior+Marcello+Garbo+opens+the+door+of+room+703+where+a+Morp+flyer+is+posted.+Two+days+before+Morp%2C+the+2022+Task+Force+posted+these+flyers+as+a+final+effort+encouraging+students+to+purchase+tickets+before+the+dance.

Eiffel Sunga

Senior Marcello Garbo opens the door of room 703 where a Morp flyer is posted. Two days before Morp, the 2022 Task Force posted these flyers as a final effort encouraging students to purchase tickets before the dance.

Maddie Almodovar, Opinion Editor

Every year, students from all grades have the opportunity to attend Morp, but for the last two years, students didn’t have that opportunity. Morp, a school dance for all students, took place on Friday, April 22 at Bonita Vista High’s (BVH) gymnasium. Leading up to the day, there were complications that could have led to its cancellation.

Usually, BVH’s Associated Student Body (ASB) is in charge of planning Morp, however, because of the cancellation of Baronial, Morp was handed off to Task Force. 

“Because we had to cancel Baronial, we weren’t able to have that fundraiser. We can do a lot of other smaller things like restaurant fundraisers or senior merch, but nothing sells as much as dances,” President of Task Force and senior Isabella Garcia said. “[ASB Advisor Christopher] Alvarez allowed us to put on Morp. It served as the buffer fundraiser to raise a little bit more money before Prom.”

However, the Wednesday before Morp, Assistant Principal Esther Wise sent out a message, urging students to buy tickets for Morp. They needed at least 100 tickets to meet the quota for Morp to continue. There were many factors that Garcia considered to be the reason for tickets not selling.

“I know some kids were like, ‘I really wanted Baronial because it was an opportunity to dress up.’ Because Morp is the opposite of what Baronial and Prom is, the concern was that a lot of people were just not interested at all,” Garcia said.

The concern was that a lot of people were just not interested at all…”

— President of Task Force and senior Isabella Garcia

Aside from the lack of student interest, the planning process was delayed by COVID-19 protocols. Co-advisor of senior class Christina Ada was heavily involved in Morp’s organization, and proved a big help to Task Force who received Morp at the last minute. 

“We had to wait for COVID-19 protocols to find out if we were going to have an indoor dance or not. We didn’t know we could move it indoors until two weeks before the dance,” Ada said.

Although seemingly last minute, both Garcia and Ada thought the planning process was not stressful, as Morp is a smaller dance. Garcia claimed that the bulk of planning took place two weeks before the dance date. Co-vice president of Task Force 2022 and senior Ingrid Alcantara mentioned the multiple meetings Task Force had in order to plan for Morp.

“It was like a side hustle. It hasn’t been our main project because prom is our main project. We’ve been planning small things [at our] few meetings on Saturdays in addition to our Thursday meetings, just for the arrangement [of Morp],” Alcantara said.

Despite the complications, Wise later sent out a Jupiter message reading that the ticket quota was met. According to Ada, students expected to buy at the door, but in order for dance costs to be covered, a set quota needed to be met.

“For Prom, we already have our own budgets and everything handled, but it would be an additional help for other senior events, like a senior breakfast or a senior sunrise. The funds that would go from this event would also get us more stuff for prom,”Alcantara said. “We also paid for a DJ pre-advanced and would lose money if this dance was canceled.”

Because the quota was met, Morp was still held on Friday. 

“For the first Morp back from COVID-19, it was a success. All of the kids that came had a great time and a lot of fun, but it was a smaller crowd than the COVID-19 dances prior. We probably had about 250 students, which isn’t a bad turnout,” Ada said. 

Garcia and Alcantara both recalled their first Morp before the COVID-19 pandemic as freshmen. According to Garcia, five years ago was the peak of Morp excitement, due to the encouragement of seniors that went the year before and “hyped it up”. Ada hopes that since COVID-19 protocols have since become more lenient, next year, Morp turn-out will be doubled. 

“Morp is a really big tradition here. It’s the funnest week of the year for a lot of people. Next year, they should have a little bit more school spirit and participate [in the] dance and assemblies, all that,” Alcantara said.