‘Moonlight In Morocco’ will shine on Malibu High Grad Night

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    The Class of 2003 will be feted with an exotic extravaganza on June 19, thanks to the planning of the Malibu High School Grad Night Committee.

    Led by committee chairs Dru Ann Jacobson and Maria Daly, the committee has planned abundant festivities to make the seniors’ last high school hurrah a memorable and safe occasion.

    “Most of the kids have been in the same class since kindergarten,” Jacobson said. “This is the last night they’ll be together and we want to make it really memorable for them.”

    The theme and party particulars were selected by an initial group of 10 parents and steered by student feedback from a senior poll. A core group of 40 parents hase done the groundwork, while all senior parents will be called to decorate. Tickets for the party are $75. The celebration will follow a day of graduation events including the graduation ceremony at 2 p.m. Jacobson said the party will begin around 9:30 pm and last until 3 a.m. or 4 am.

    “The students know the theme,” Jacobson noted, “but the lay-out and look of the whole setting will be a surprise until they step inside.”

    Palm trees, a fountain, belly dancers and a street bazaar will transform the school gymnasium from an athletic facility into a distant land. The scene will be something out of the movie “Casablanca,” including a casino, a caf, and a nightclub reminiscent of “Rick’s Place” from the 1942 movie starring Humphrey Bogart.

    Jacobson said local businesses have been generous in their donations of prizes that will be raffled off to the students.

    “We were trying to bring in the community,” she said. “After all, our kids have been using their products and services all their lives.”

    The entertainment will include laser tag in a 30-foot by 40-foot arena, a rock wall for climbing and a mechanical bull. Dancing will be available all night, as will be massages and henna tattoos.

    While the seniors create new memories, a slide show presentation will highlight moments from birth to graduation of the class members.

    The food and drink servings will be just as special and tantalizing as the entertainment. A kebab station, a Middle Eastern salad station, a dessert station and sushi from Malibu’s Zooma Sushi, along with other offerings will be set up to feed the partygoers. Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf will provide beverages.

    Because the evening’s keynote is focused on fun and the future, safety is the bottom line. Grad Night is an event supported by the organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). As part of the MADD philosophy and the PTA’s message, the alcohol-free and drug-free evening will impress on the students that you can have fun without alcohol or drugs.

    Jacobson said the class of 161 students has been a particularly tight-knit group.

    “It’s a really emotional time for the parents,” she said. “Having our kids safe is important, so we don’t have to worry about them going to some party and drinking and then driving home.”

    MADD reports that alcohol-related traffic accidents are the number one killer of America’s teenagers and young adults through age 24. “Moonlight In Morocco” is designed to take hazards out of a historically dangerous night for teens and replace it with a sensational night the students will remember and take with them throughout their lives.

    “We just want them to have a really fun and safe time together,” Jacobson said. “It’s their last big party together before going off to college and onto the rest of their lives.”