The most popular dance clubs have security watching over things and keeping the guests safe and happy. A chaperone doesn't equal no fun. Having adult chaperones keeps things safe and allows you to enjoy your event.
In the planning process for substance-free parties, teens and adults need to keep in mind every possible strategy for keeping the event substance-free. It's always a good point to remind everyone that adults, whose homes are party sites where alcohol could be made available to underage youth, could be held liable and possibly criminally prosecuted. Check the liability statutes and ordinances in your communities.
Talk to your local law enforcement agencies about participating in your events. The presence of off-duty police officers ensures that your party will be safe and secure. They're also a lot cooler to have around than someone's parents! You may ask them to come in plain clothes.
Invite your favorite educators to come to the party and incorporate them into the activities. What could be more fun than seeing your coach, teacher or principal in the finals of a dance contest, or hearing your math teacher sing karaoke? Inviting them to your party will also keep things under control and open new lines of communication, making it a "win-win" situation for everyone involved.
Rules are also important in making sure your party runs smoothly. Make sure your party will follow the rules of the place in which it's being held. For example, don't invite 150 people to a room that holds 75, or if music is going to be played, make sure the sound levels are acceptable and comfortable for guests and neighbors. Make sure you contact local authorities and the owner of the venue to ensure your party won't break any rules or regulations. Let your guests know the rules of the party. You may want to hand out contract cards that list the rules. The card could serve as a souvenir.
Contract cards are pledge agreements. There are many forms and you can create various types for different events. The main purpose is to develop a clear understanding of acceptable and unacceptable behavior. Contract cards do not have to be for specific events. They can be used to increase communication between youth and adults about the possible destructive decisions regarding alcohol, other drugs, peer pressure and behavior. SADD developed two contract cards: Contract for Life and Prom Pledge. Check them out at www.saddonline.com