Oh, they're not looking forward to it because it's formal, and they get all spiffed up in their dress blues...
... no, it's because of this, the Grog Bowl. And yes, it is a toilet. And yes, they're making punch in it.
This... this... in my boys' eyes, is just about the most wonderful military tradition that exists.
All through dinner, while the cadets are expected to be on their absolute best behavior, they're allowed (and even encouraged) to report any etiquette infractions to "Mr. Vice" (the vice-president of the ceremony) who can order them to ceremonially drink from the Grog Bowl.
... yes, these...
...honorable looking young men (and women, too) absolutely delight in accusing each other of heinous infractions upon the mess...
They're obviously conferring, plotting deeply about who they can report.
These gentlemen were among the first to pay their dues.
If the Grog Bowl begins to be depleted, they can always resort to other punishments, like being made to sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, or I'm a Little Teapot, complete with hand motions.
I'm afraid the Grasshopper boys didn't escape notice. And their unique punishment?
They had to fly around the room, while making airplane noises, for the entertainment of the distinguished guests ;D
But they didn't mind at all. In fact, I think they would've felt neglected had they not been accused of something.
We had a great time :D