Helping teens have a fairy tale prom

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SARASOTA - A local organization that helps get prom dresses for some less fortunate students is adding a little something for the guys this year.

"Everybody has really great memories of their prom and this is an opportunity to help girls go to the prom and boys that maybe would not be able to afford it otherwise," said Wendy Getchell, store owner of Lotus in Sarasota.  Getchell has been collecting prom gowns and accessories for the Cinderella project for the past 4 years.

"We actually collect dresses year round," Getchell said.  "Anyone can drop off a dress, accessories, jewelry, anything that is appropriate for the prom."

For the 5th year in a row, local businesses are collecting prom dresses and accessories which is part of Every Child Inc.'s Cinderella and Her Prince Project where boys and girls who might not be able to afford to go to this special event have a chance to get the necessities for free.

"We bring the girls in to have a fitting, they can pick out the dress they like and try them on and accessorize them, and feel really good about themselves for the prom," said Getchell.

But this year, unlike years before, the "prince charmings" will also get some help with the attire.

"It's very expensive for a guy to go to the prom too," Alexander said.  "So we decided this year to try and get enough money raised so that we can have a gift certificate for a tuxedo rental for the night."

Which is why organizers hope the community will come together in any way they can and help our youth get the happy ending they deserve.

"It's made all the difference for so many girls that are able to go to the prom that their parents would not be able to afford to let them get a dress," Getchell said.

There are many ways to help out before the event on March 14 and 15.  If you would like to donate dresses and accessories, money for tuxedo rental, or even gift certificates to tuxedo rental businesses, call 941-376-2663.

Drop Donations Off at the Following Locations:

Lotus - 1451 Main Street, Sarasota

LBoutique - 506 S. Pineapple Ave, Sarasota

Louis Custom Tailor - 1654 Main Street, Sarasota

Sarasota Brides and Formalwear - 4051 Clark Rd, Sarasota

Goodbyes Consignment - 2123 Siesta Dr, Sarasota

George Mullen Activity Center - 1602 Kramer Way, North Port


Mail Tuxedo Donations To:

Every Child, Inc.

1700 North Drive

Sarasota, FL 34239