TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Gorgeous gowns are flying off the racks this weekend as teens try to find the perfect fit for prom. A local group is offering up free dresses thanks to community donations.
The Garrett Sands Kindness Project partnered with the Vigo County YMCA for a two-day prom dress giveaway. Men's Warehouse also chipped in to help a few young men look their best. The event is meant to honor a young man who never had the chance to attend his senior prom.
Jayna Sullivan says, "This is in memory of Garrett and he deserves that and giving back to the community in memory of him, that's what this is all about."
Friday marked the first day of the giveaway and started with families lined up outside two make-shift dressing rooms inside the YMCA. The community donated more than five hundred dresses that are now available to teens for free.
West Vigo High School senior Ashley Edmonson was one of the first inside the sparkly wonderland filled with gowns and jewels. It didn't take long for her to fall in love with a dress. It was the first she tried on.
Edmonson says, "It kind of makes me feel like a goddess, really."
Sullivan says this event is another opportunity for healing after the loss of her son. She says she is still grieving but thinks her son is pushing her to keep going.
Sullivan says, "It helps me snap out of that and to focus on something else, multi-task. Inside I'm hurting for Garrett and on the outside, I'm able to do this and so I'm very, very grateful for that."
Edmonson says she would not be able to afford to go to prom if it wasn't for the Garrett Sands Kindness Project and this giveaway.
"It is beyond amazing. I feel so bad for what happened to them but I know that what they're doing for them, for everyone here, is just angelic, very angelic."
Sullivan says she hopes the young women will think of Garrett when they pick out their favorite dress and go to prom.
Edmonson says, "I know I'm going to be ready for posing. I'm going to be ready for that dance floor because I'm going to be hitting it."
The giveaway continues Saturday from noon to 7 pm at the Vigo County YMCA.