MARSHALL, Tx. (KSLA) - February will mark seven years since former NFL player Tim Tebow created his annual event “Night to Shine.”
This event allows those with special needs the opportunity to come together for one night and enjoy their very own prom experience.
On Friday, Feb. 7, Immanuel Baptist Church in Marshall will sponsor their Night to Shine for its second year at the Marshall Convention Center. Last year they partnered with Marshall ISD and had over 300 guests and roughly 400 volunteers for this event.
“It was something that you just have to be there to see,” said Coordinator Patti Brady. “(It was great) just seeing the excitement of the guests, (and) seeing the love of Christ just being poured out into all of the participants.”
Brady says two years ago she attend Tyler’s Night to Shine and knew she wanted to bring that to the city of Marshall. They spent months planning everything and this year they begin planning in July.
Right now they are still in need of volunteers, particularly buddies that will be partnered with guests during the night.
“You’ll dress up like you’re going to the prom, and you’re going to be with that individual the whole night,” Brady said. “You’re going to be dancing and having dinner, maybe some karaoke, and just having a really good evening with that individual.”
They still need around 200 volunteers for this event. Volunteers that want to be buddies need to be 16 years of age or older and Brady says many from last year were actually college students.
“We’re very thankful to have so many colleges in Marshall,” she said. “So ETBU (East Texas Baptist University) is one of the big colleges that participate, and Panola College so we have a lot of students from there that are coming.”
Candice Page attended last year’s event and really enjoyed it.
“We go in and you eat dinner, and then we dance,” she said. “I had a good time.”
Her mother Kay is grateful that this event is available for her daughter and others in their community.
“When our folks graduate from high school there’s really not a lot of intermingling,” she said. “They don’t drive, and they don’t go to movies and those kinds of things with their friends from high school. Well this is a time that they can reconnect with their friends from school and make new friends.”
Registration to attend or volunteer will be open until Monday, Jan. 13.
There will be volunteer training at 5:30 p.m on Thursday, Jan. 16 and Thursday, Jan. 23 at the Immanuel Baptist Church on 2408 West Pinecrest Drive in Marshall.