‘Night to Shine’ Prom Night for People with Disabilities Coming to Oconomowoc this February

More than 700 participants, community volunteers and donors are expected to take part in Night to Shine, a prom night for people ages 14 and older with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The event is presented by Bethesda Lutheran Communities, Watertown, and will be held at the YMCA at Pabst Farms, 1750 Valley Rd., Oconomowoc, on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017 from 7-10 p.m.

Night to Shine, now in its third year, is sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation (TTF) and takes place simultaneously atmore than 350 locations around the world. The TTF provides its hosts with a financial grant and a Night to Shine prom kit to underwrite the cost of the event. This is the second year Bethesda is participating. Last year, 120 prom-goers attended at Bethesda’s Watertown location making it so popular a waitlist was created once the venue reached capacity. Bethesda sought out the YMCA space to create room for an additional 180 participants this year. Each participant is paired with a volunteer buddy.

“We’re so grateful to the YMCA for offering up their space to allow us to provide a fantastic prom experience to an even larger group this year,” said Bethesda President and CEO Mike Thirtle. “To see the community rally around this event and the outpouring of support is truly remarkable.”

Every guest of Night to Shine enters this complimentary event on a red carpet complete with a warm welcome from a friendly crowd and paparazzi. Once inside the prom, guests receive the royal treatment, including hair and makeup stations, shoe shining areas, limousine rides, corsages and boutonnieres, a catered dinner, karaoke—all the customary prom activities. Each honored guest is crowned king or queen of the prom.

Volunteers and Sponsorships

Three local churches—Good Shepherd Lutheran Church and Faith Lutheran Church in Watertown and St. Peter’s in Lebanon—are co-hosting Night to Shine. Bethesda is providing a majority of the volunteers needed to make Night to Shine a success and is looking for any and all people who want to help out.

“While many of the volunteers will be taking part in the event on Feb. 10 to make it a success, there also are a lot of people behind the scenes,” said Naomi Neuberger, lifelong Watertown resident, former Bethesda employee and volunteer coordinator at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. “Bethesda needs volunteers to serve as buddies for the participants and assist where needed—welcoming committee, food committee, respite area.”

“We take part and volunteer for events like this because something like ‘Night to Shine’ is part of being ‘the light of the world and the salt of the earth,’” said David Groth, senior pastor at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.

The prom provides several sponsorship opportunities, including food and beverage, entertainment, sponsor party, decorations, limousines, swag bag items, photography and videography, flowers, primp room, health and safety, and dresses and suits.

“We are reaching out to the community in prayerful anticipation, hoping for sponsorship gifts so people with developmental disabilities can experience a night of enchantment and joy," said Jedd Lapid, vice president of development at Bethesda.

For additional information on the Watertown Night to Shine event, or to register, volunteer or sponsor an area, please contact events@mailblc.org, call 920-206-4433 or visit the Night to Shine webpage, BethesdaLutheranCommunities.org/NightToShine.

The Tim Tebow Foundation exists to bring Faith, Hope and Love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need. That mission is being fulfilled every day through the foundation’s seven areas of outreach, including W15H, Timmy’s Playrooms, Orphan Care, Adoption Aid, the Tebow CURE Hospital, Team Tebow and Night to Shine. For more information on the Tim Tebow Foundation, please visit www.timtebowfoundation.org.

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