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Night to Shine Prom a big hit for special group

Night to Shine Prom a big hit for special group

February 10th, 2019 by Ashley Gardner in Texarkana News

Participants of Tim Tebow's Night to Shine Prom dance to Mark Ronson's "Uptown Funk" on Friday at the Arkansas Convention Center.

Photo by Hunt Mercier /Texarkana Gazette.

The best party in town took place Friday evening at Tim Tebow's Night to Shine Prom at the Texarkana, Ark., Convention Center.

The event was for teenagers and adults with special needs.

The kings and queens, approximately 400 of them, walked the red carpet to cheers from volunteers as they were escorted by cheerleaders and football players from local high schools.

The dance floor filled up early as those in attendance moved to tunes played by local musicians.

Mandy Collins, who helped organize Night to Shine, said the special prom was a community effort. "It takes a lot of volunteers and lots of love for the children for sure. This is an opportunity for them to be kings and queens for a night. To see the smiles on their faces is priceless. It's worth all the hard work for sure," Collins said. "The head sponsor of this event is the Tim Tebow Foundation. It's always the Friday before Valentine's Day. This was his way of making kids feel special. We also had a lot of help and donations from the community as well."

Volunteer Joe Cantu manned the Glam it Up table, which sported a large collection of costume jewelry and beads for the guests to wear and keep.

"We're trying to hand out jewelry to make them feel decorated. I promise, if you come back in an hour it will all be gone," said Cantu, who was assisted by his daughters and wife.

He said Night to Shine is a worthy cause.

"I want to be able to give back to my community. I volunteer at Runnin' WJ Ranch, and I'm a volunteer firefighter. This is our second year of volunteering at this event. The hardest part to me is not crying when I see how happy they are when they come in. All my girls will eventually go to prom, but it won't be as special as this."

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