Are Quinceañeras Worth the Money?

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Are Quinceañeras Worth the Money?

Fellow reporter, Alexandra Mares, at her quinceañera with her chosen color of red on July 9, 2016.

Fellow reporter, Alexandra Mares, at her quinceañera with her chosen color of red on July 9, 2016.

Photo courtesy of Ana Sanchez

Fellow reporter, Alexandra Mares, at her quinceañera with her chosen color of red on July 9, 2016.

Photo courtesy of Ana Sanchez

Photo courtesy of Ana Sanchez

Fellow reporter, Alexandra Mares, at her quinceañera with her chosen color of red on July 9, 2016.

Jacqueline Pompa, Editor-in-Chief

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Tradition is what we do to keep memories alive. They are great and quinceañeras, a party dedicated to a 15-year-old girl who makes her passage into womanhood, are no different.

But families spend way too much money on the venue, flowers, photos, the perfect dress and we are stressed out for months making sure everything goes as planned. It’s just too much.

According to the website costhelper.com, on average, parents spend $5,000 to $20,000 on a quinceañera. It depends on the number of people invited, how big the venue is and the type of food that is served. It’s not a wedding, so why spend so much?

The beautiful dress the girl wears will only be worn once. The $250 to $2,000 dress will be stored away in the closet never to be seen again.

The dress is too puffy, it’s out of style”

— Jacqueline Pompa

Some girls plan on wearing the dress again for prom but most end up not doing it. The dress is too puffy, it’s out of style and it’s a girl’s time to wear a new dress rather than something they haven’t seen in two years.

Parents spend thousands of dollars to make it a perfect day for their daughter and even then they sometimes still need help from others. This is where madrinas and the padrinos come in. They are asked to pay $250 on up to help with the expenses and help out the girl and her family.

So pretty much if parents can’t afford it, then as guests, you need to chip in money?

This single day causes financial struggles if the family is not well off and add a year’s worth of stress on this so-called “perfect day.” Is it worth it because it’s going to be the most memorable day of a girl’s life or not worth all the stress and money?

Senior, Jillian Martinez thinks, “It is worth it because ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always wanted to have a 15. “ But when it comes to decisions it’s up to the person. “As I was growing up and saw my older cousins have theirs, it made me want mine more,” said Martinez.

But it can be a burden for the parents. Seeing them stress as they plan for the big party and asking other family members for help. Then when the day finally arrives they’re still stressed trying to pretend to like family members you know they hate, but they just invited them to get more presents. Sometimes you meet family you didn’t even know existed till the day of the party.

Then there’s the dancing. You have to hire a dance teacher to teach 5-10 teenagers to dance at the same pace without messing around. Sometimes these practices last months and are every week or if they’re short on time, twice a week.

I’ve been to multiple quinceañeras where the chambelanes have only three months to practice. This may seem like a lot of time but when you’re trying to teach a bunch of kids 3-5 dances, you begin to question if they’ll remember them or not.

So pretty much if parents can’t afford it, then as guests, you need to chip in money?”

— Jacqueline Pompa

If the parents want to be extra, they’ll give a surprise gift on top of the multi $1,000 party. My sister got a robot to arrive at her party. Yes, a robot!

Then comes tradition, when the girl is handed her doll signifying that it is the last toy they’ll get as a child. The change in shoes, the transition from a child (flats) to a woman (heels). The crown, showing everyone that the girl has more authority over their life.

Junior, Ashley Ortega, went on a trip to Europe with her sister rather than have a quinceañera. Her parents spent about $2,000 for the trip. “I went to London, Ireland and Paris,” she said. She loved it and doesn’t have a big poofy dress taking up half her closet space.

Moments like these may seem important because of the sentimental feelings but does a girl really need a $10,000 party to show everyone that they’ve become a woman? Does a girl really need that moment with their parents and strangers to show them that they can have more authority over their life?

Not for me. I’d rather go to Europe.