Seniors at Pittsfield High School are determined to salvage their prom this Friday despite the theft of $9,000 meant to pay their big night.
They are raising fresh funds through Facebook and area businesses, and determined to hang the balloons, decorations and dance on.
"When I told them prom was in jeopardy because we were missing $9,000 the room was quiet," Principal Tracey Benson told ABC News. "The money was theirs. They were surprised that someone would consider stealing that amount of money from them, not the school."
The Pittsfield Police Department has launched an investigation into the theft. There are no suspects and there is an award of $500 offered for information leading to the arrest of the thief.
The money disappeared from a teacher's locked desk in a locked room on senior prank night, Benson said.
The principal said that during prank night "seniors sit down with class council and are informed of what the prank will be."
"We want to make sure it wouldn't be destructive," he said.
This year the seniors put cups full of water on the second floor and filled the ground floor with hundreds of balloons.
With the school open to the seniors for a few hours to carry out their prank, "Someone took that opportunity [to steal the money] and knowing where the funds were, brought in tools," said Benson.
The principal said the students have rallied after being stunned by the theft.
"They currently raised just above $2,000 and it's steadily climbing," Benson said. "They're very proud of themselves."
Although the money may be missing, the students' effort in fundraising means they can keep their prom on the calendar.
"They really banded together," said Principal Benson. "One person was not going to ruin their prom."