Prom dress giveaway fits the bill 

Published 6:39 pm Friday, March 4, 2022

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The slow return to normalcy from two years of COVID havoc has its signature moments.

For high school students, who’ve been robbed of so many once-in-a-lifetime opportunities during the pandemic, senior proms are making a much welcomed return this spring. Bring out the gowns and tuxedos!

Unfortunately, household budgets these days are strained by soaring inflation, leaving little room for discretionary spending. The typical prom experience – gown, hair, makeup, shoes and nails – can run $600 or more, an unthinkable expense when essential groceries and a tank of gas have consumed mom’s and dad’s paychecks.

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The Nansemond River High School DECA Chapter, in partnership with C3 Concierge LLC, and Tamiya Davis Inc., is stepping in to help. The Gowns for Crowns Prom Dress Collection and Giveaway is planned for 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 12, at the school.

The mission is to “collect and distribute prom dresses and accessories to young ladies in the Hampton Roads area to provide them with the opportunity to make lifelong memories and enjoy this important milestone.”

The group launched the project in December 2019, not knowing that a global pandemic was just around the corner. Planned dress giveaways were canceled in 2020 and 2021, but collection efforts continued nonetheless. More than 500 prom dresses in all styles, sizes and colors will be distributed next weekend on a first-come, first-served basis, though shoppers should get their tickets in advance at

“This event will not only allow young ladies who are not able to financially attend prom to do so but will also increase their confidence and help offset the cost for their parents,” said one of the organizers, DECA co-adviser Candace Credle, crediting sponsors Nansemond River High School, King’s Fork High School, the Suffolk School Board, Connecting Communities LLC, Curvaceous Boutique, Fly Girl Boutique, McEllis Bridal At McMannen Plaza and Tri-Cities Home Services LLC for helping make it possible.