FAIRLESS HILLS >> The “Best Prom in America” just got even better, thanks to special recognition by the Guinness World Records team.
After carefully documenting the process that led to the creation of the largest mural of kisses, or lip prints, Pennsbury High School administrators were notified by the Guinness World Records team that their school’s 3D mural of kisses, which spelled out the words ROCK MUSIC with a 3D guitar centerpiece – and featured as a spotlight mural in the gym at the Pennsbury High School Senior Prom on June 1st - was designated the world’s largest.
The previous record, set in 2012 in Brazil, featured a total of 13,316 kisses. Pennsbury’s effort shattered that record with a whopping 41,692 kisses spread tightly across a 63’ long, 11’ high mural. The centerpiece guitar shape stood 18.’
The announcement was met with thunderous applause at the 2019 Pennsbury Commencement ceremony held at Falcon Field on June 11. Pennsbury High School East Principal, Reggie Meadows, shared the news during his speech to the graduates.
The record-breaking effort was pitched to Meadows nearly a year ago by Pennsbury parents, Gary and Amy Nolan, whose daughter, Melanie, was entering her senior year. Gary Nolan is a Guinness World Record holder himself, having run the fastest marathon in a Colonial American costume.
Momentum built as the year progressed, and the Nolans led the charge to accumulate tens of thousands of lip prints from students, parents, alumni, teachers, administrators, and community members interested in helping to achieve the goal.
The 63-foot mural of kisses was created by volunteer students, led by Pennsbury Prom Co-Chairs Mollie Nellist and Savannah Fuhrmann, with assistance from Prom Co-Chair, Angelica Ramirez. The mural was one of the spotlight features in the gym, where the all-star talent takes center stage and the students dance the night away.
Following tradition, the community was invited inside the high school to view the school’s elaborate decorations the day of the prom from noon until 3:00 p.m. The mural of kisses was also one of the highlights of that daytime tour.
Upon hearing the news of the World Record achievement, the Nolans said, "We are delighted that the Pennsbury community embraced the work involved with earning this World Record! This project would never have come to fruition without countless hours of volunteers working in various aspects of the mural.
"We had several parents who each made thousands of lipstick prints. We had others who counted and glued the prints," said the Nolans. "And, of course, the students rallied behind the mural and worked hard to complete it in time for the prom. It’s the traditions and community that combine to make something as special as the prom and a Guinness World Record.
"That sense of pride in tradition is why community members, parents, bus drivers, teachers, and yes, students, all get together to create something they can be proud of,” the Nolans said.
Faculty advisors for the 2019 Pennsbury Prom were Tony Napoli and Curtis May. These dedicated teachers also played a prominent role in helping to achieve the goal of earning the World Record.
Shivani Patel, a senior media production student, was instrumental in ensuring the entire counting and gluing process was videotaped, which was a requirement of the Guinness World Record application. Shivani was consistently at each session and made sure the work was framed in the shot, the tripod was steady, the batteries were charged, and the memory card was ready.
Pennsbury parent, Patrick Gilbride, is also recognized for facilitating a major donation of lipstick products from Estee Lauder and Smashbox cosmetics firms. This helped tremendously in the mural’s creation. Members of the Pennsbury community donated and used a variety of additional brands of cosmetic lip products in creating the lip prints.
More on the World Record
Lipstick kiss prints were applied to the blank kiss print papers over a period of 3.5 months, from February – May 2019.
Students and community members created the kiss prints during sporting events, special school events, prom committee meetings, and in their own homes. The kiss prints were bundled into groups of 50, then bagged into packs of 100 and stored, ready to be glued.
The general design of the mural was approved by Guinness World Records in November 2018. It is a flat mural with some three-dimensional objects attached to it. The Pennsbury Prom’s 2019 theme was “Prom to the Music.” In keeping with that theme, the record-breaking mural included the words ROCK MUSIC on either side of a large guitar shape. Every surface of the mural, including the 3D elements, was covered with the 41,692 lip prints.