The dance floor was packed on April 7 for the Tampa Shriners Hospital's Mardi Gras themed patient prom. Patients, parents, hospital staff and volunteers all joined in the conga line that was weaving in and out of the hospital's fishbowl, which served as the location for all the festivities.
The fun began in the hospital's auditorium, which was transformed into the land of makeup and hairspray for the dedicated individuals who made up the evening's "pamper squad." Paul Mitchell The School – Tampa, makeup artists from Sephora, and nail technicians from Luxx Nail & Spa set up shop and invited patients to get "glammed up" for free. It was a popular place to be for our female patients, and based on the smiles on their faces – everyone was grateful for the opportunity to be pampered before the prom began. Patients also had the opportunity to "shop" for a prom dress, which they got to take home after wearing at the dance that evening.
“I’ve never been to a prom before,” patient ambassador Crystal Molina said while waiting patiently for her curls to be perfected. “I can’t wait to get down there, and request a Justin Bieber song from the DJ.”
This reaction is exactly what Linh Tran and her dedicated group of volunteers wanted to hear; excitement and anticipation for all the fun the night would bring.“This is all for the kids,” Tran said. “[And] giving them the chance to have fun, let loose, dance around and just enjoy themselves.” Shortly thereafter, Tran joined her friends and family back out on the dance floor to test their own rhythm against the ever-popular “Cha-Cha Slide.”
The fun didn't stop there. Pizza and brownie bites were popular choices in the food line. Patients posed for pictures in front of the Mardi Gras-themed backdrop, while others danced among the laser light show coming from the DJ booth. Song after song, patients cheered at the opportunity to show off their skills to some of the most popular line dances. It was an amazing evening for all our patient families, and we are so grateful to the hardworking volunteers and donors who brought it to fruition.
On behalf of everyone at the Tampa Shriners Hospital, we would like to give volunteer Linh Tran a great big shout out for her dedicated efforts in making this event happen for our kids. We are truly grateful!