Halifax County High School varsity softball and driver’s education students hold up signs Tuesday morning with messages encouraging their fellow students to drive safely on prom night, in front of a wrecked vehicle. Pictured with the students are junior varsity head softball coach Reagan Cannon (pictured second row, far left), and members of local law enforcement (pictured from left to right, back row) Virginia State Trooper David Clark. South Boston Police Chief Bryan Young, Halifax County Sheriff’s Office Major M.A. Womack, and South Boston Police 1st Sgt. M.W. Bowen.

The most anticipated party of the year for Halifax County High School juniors and seniors, prom 2022, is Saturday night.

The “Red Carpet and Roses Gala” is set for 8 p.m. until midnight Saturday in the high school cafeteria.

“Prom is a keynote event for juniors and seniors and it’s a privilege to be able to offer that event for them,” said HCHS principal Michael Lewis. “We’re looking forward to great attendance at the prom.”

Prom was held outdoors last year due to COVID-19, and Lewis said he is pleased the school is able to safely host the event indoors once again this year.

Parents and families are welcome to watch the students enter the school building for prom and take pictures outdoors in a roped off area or the grassy area in front of the traffic circle, but they will not be allowed in the building, Lewis explained. He added the students’ safety the evening of prom is of utmost importance, and there will be security measures in place.

As prom approaches, local law enforcement officials encourage students to “party safe.” Wrecked vehicles will be on display all week at the high school leading up to prom to caution students about the potential consequences of distracted driving.

Members of the varsity softball team and driver’s education program created signs with messages such as “Arrive Alive, Do Not Drink and Drive” and “No Texting and Driving” and placed them on the vehicles Tuesday morning.

“Hopefully, the students will see the message every single time they pass by throughout the week. The message is ‘party safe,’” said Virginia State Trooper David Clark. “Last month we did the distracted driving simulator at the high school, and this is a continuation of that, expanding on promoting highway safety during prom week.”

Wayne Carr of Carr’s Enterprises and Scott Smith of Scottsburg Exxon donated the wrecked vehicles for display.


This wrecked vehicle donated by Wayne Carr of Carr’s Enterprises is one of several on display outside Halifax County High School the week of prom, with the goal of encouraging students to drive safe on prom night

South Boston Police Chief Bryan Young further emphasized the message of driving safely and avoiding distractions while driving.

“With prom and graduation season upon us, we want to remind students of what can happen. It can happen to them, and it can happen here,” Young said. “We want to make sure the students understand the dangers of distracted driving. Being on the phone, eating and talking with other passengers are three significant distractions that a lot of young and teenage drivers experience.”

Young also asks drivers in the area of the high school on prom night and graduation day to slow down and be mindful of the increased traffic during those major events.

South Boston Police Department 1st Sgt. M.W. Bowen detailed the traffic pattern plan for the evening of prom. Drivers of students in the prom processional will turn off Halifax Road into Halifax County Middle School and make a right into the middle school bus parking lot, Bowen said. From there, the drivers will make their way down the middle school access road to the high school.

Three cars will be released at a time to make their way through the traffic circle and drop off prom attendees. No towing of trailers or boats or tractor-trailers will be allowed in the processional. All vehicles in the processional must be highway legal.

Drivers of prom attendees not participating in the processional will be allowed to park in the high school student parking lot, Bowen said. Drivers exiting the parking lot after dropping off students at prom will only have the option of turning right out of the parking lot; left turns will be prohibited.

Miranda Baines is a staff writer for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact her at

Miranda Baines is a staff writer for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact her at