Bethesda Lutheran Communities in Watertown will hold a prom night called "Night to Shine" on Feb. 12 for people with special needs.
In advance of the event, Bethesda has collected more than 250 donated outfits with various homecoming dress styles for attendees in need of formal wear to choose from at its Watertown Campus, 700 Hoffmann Drive, on Saturday, Jan. 23, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Outfits were provided by Bethesda Thrift Shops, private donors and community organizations including Operation Cinderella a Fox Valley-area nonprofit.
Bethesda is a national organization that serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Night to Shine is being paid for with a $8,500 grant from the Tim Tebow Foundation, an outreach program founded by the former NFL quarterback.
“We are truly grateful for the organizations who have decided to make donations so that others can look their absolute best when Night to Shine takes place,” said Jack Vater, corporate director of Bethesda Enterprises. “This is going to be a night that will create lasting memories for all who attend.”
Night to Shine events will take place simultaneously at different organizations around the country that serve people with special needs from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Feb. 12. Tebow will make an appearance at one of 200 participating locations in 48 states, but will not reveal which one beforehand.
"It's an event for anyone who's 16 years of age or older who has developmental or intellectual disabilities," said Bethesda spokesperson Craig McCarthy. "What it's all about is to make these young people feel special and to feel loved by people."