Dale Potter and Kelvin Gillespie (left) enjoy their time at a Night to Shine event in Dunwoody, Ga., in 2019. The annual even for special needs people continued this year, with BeHope Church in Beavercreek as one of the prom sites. (Hyosub Shin /AJC.com)

More than 300 crowned in Beavercreek at ‘Night to Shine’ special needs prom

It was the third year for the Tim Tebow Foundation-sponsored event at the former Beavercreek Church of the Nazarene and one of several hundred such events held throughout the world. 

RELATED: Beavercreek church hosts 2019 Night to Shine event

"Every single person here is crowned king or queen of the prom," said James Mummert, Night to Shine director at BeHope Church and a pastor on staff. "Everybody matters." 

The event, always held the Friday before Valentine's Day, offered a boutique with free clothes for those who needed duds for the night as well as the usual prom night trappings -- limos, a DJ, professional photography, karaoke, music by The Humble Mangoes and dinner, of course. 

There also were special accommodations -- lighting devoid of flashes and sensory rooms, for example -- for the stars of the evening. 

There were special treats for parents and caregivers as well -- food, messages and more, Mummert said. 

"Sometimes those in the special needs community aren't treated with the dignity and respect that everybody should be because we're all human beings," Mummert said. 

Beside the more than 300 kings and queens who were to be crowned at the end of the evening, there were approximately 450 volunteers to help make sure the night would remain magical. 

The Tim Tebow Foundation launched Night to Shine in 2014 "to provide an unforgettable prom night experience, centered on God's love for people with special needs, ages 14 and older. The first Night to Shine was held in 2015, in 44 churches representing 26 states and three countries.

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