When Principal Dan Haron joined students in the Darien High School courtyard for an ice cream social to celebrate their last day of school Thursday, they knew something was coming. He didn't. A flash mob of students and teachers formed on the lawn to dance for Haron.
"When I first got the idea, I thought it was really cool," senior Niya Wright said after receiving an email in early May from several parents who wanted to give Haron a special goodbye on the last day of school.
As captain of the dance team, Wright helped organize the surprise. She said her first challenge was to create a dance with dance team members.
"It took us probably about an hour to put it together," she said.
Another challenge for Wright was teaching the dance to everyone who wanted to be involved.
"We came up with something that we thought would be simple enough for the students to learn," she said. She also kept it a simple task to reach out to everyone.
"We recorded a tutorial on how to do the dance, and after we recorded it, we uploaded it to YouTube," she said. The YouTube video Wright posted is called "Flash Mob," by Curly Top 118.
Assistant Principal Ellen Dunn sent a link to the video to the entire school.
"One day when (Haron) was gone, we made a schoolwide announcement over the intercom," Wright said.
News of the flash mob secretly got around.
"I talked to some people, and I brought it up in some of my classes," Wright said, adding that even teachers pitched in.
Haron seemed pleasantly surprised by the effort. Although afterward he said he would save most of his comments for graduation, he said of his time as principal, "These have been a phenomenal five years for me."
After the dance, First Selectman Jayme Stevenson spoke to the crowd, naming June 14, 2012, Dan Haron Day.
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