Southern Teens Set Up Prom Dress Drive and Giveaway

What girl doesn’t dream of prom night? Aside from a wedding, it is probably as close as any of us get to being the main character in the good part of a fairy tale. Its a time for the gorgeous and polite date; maybe a corsage; before the dance, a fancy dinner out, for two or with friends—all of whom are looking their absolute best.

The girls stand next to the dresses they’ve collected so far.

In 2013, that package might set you back a pretty penny, or several pennies. Several thousand pennies, probably.

And that is before you even throw in the dress.

So this year, in South County, an enterprising group of junior high school students have an idea that will bring out the Cinderella in all of us. They’re collecting pre-loved dresses and gowns and then giving them away.

For free.

The girls are all parishioners a St. James in Lothian and juniors at Southern High in Harwood. They are: Karen Furr, Katharine Milbradt, Katie Mather, Caroline Pickart, Meghan Segreti and Emily Rudasil.

“We’re all good friends,” Furr said.

For their Sunday School community service project, they are collecting gently used gowns: prom gowns, bridesmaids dresses, inaugural dresses, formal and cocktail length dresses. Anyone can give, so if you’ve got something hanging in your closet, think about handing it over.

Caroline Pickart had the idea to start the Prom Dress Drive. She said she read about a similar effort in Teen Vogue. She talked to her friends and they launched the effort by posting flyers around school and putting an announcement in the St. James church bulletin.

So if you have a dress that no longer fits, or you think you’ll be buying one for the next formal event, maybe you could donate to the cause.  There are four ways to donate:

  • Drop off your dress at St. James Parish, 5757 Solomons Island Road in Lothian, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., any weekday.
  • Message one of the girls on their St. James Prom Dress Drive page on Facebook to arrange for a pick up.
  • If you are a student at Southern High, you can drop your dress off with the art/fashion teacher Mrs. Hagerman at Southern High School, 4400 Solomons Island Road in Harwood.
  • On March 23, drop off a dress(es) at the Nordstrom 2013 Spring Formal Fashion show at the Annapolis Mall Nordstrom at West Street and Jennifer Road in Annapolis. The girls will have a table set up for collection.

Generally, they’d like to have dresses that are in good condition (preferably cleaned), with no stains or tears. They don’t have a budget to clean the dresses before giving them away and they’d like to spare the recipients from having an expense after they pick up a dress.

To give the dresses away, they are contacting guidance offices at other high schools and at Southern to let girls at those schools know about the effort.

The dresses will be given away on April 13. The girls have contacted local businesses to line up door-prizes for the lucky ladies who come, like makeup and hair services.

The dresses they’ve collected so far, (over five dozen!) are all sizes, all colors. There are rich jewel toned dresses, little black dresses, halter tops, sequins and florals. They look like they’ll have a little something for everyone.

They hope next year when they are seniors to get started a little earlier to make the effort even bigger and better. From here, it looks like they are doing just fine this year.

Congrats to these young women on a great effort.

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About Mitchelle Stephenson

I've gotta tell Mitchelle! Send your South County news tips, brag on your fab volunteers, talk traffic, police and fire or just say "howdy" to Mitchelle Stephenson, co-founding editor of the South River Source. Mitchelle@SouthRiverSource.com or reach me in person on mobile: 410-353-4706.

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