A Night to Shine

A Night to Shine

I recently had the pleasure and privilege of volunteering at the Ohio Valley Night to Shine on Feb. 9. On this one night, people from all over the world come together at the same time to celebrate the lives of people with special needs, ages 14 and up. The event is a memorable prom night experience that many of the guests might not have otherwise been able to experience. This event is sponsored, in part, by the Tim Tebow Foundation with the help of local area churches who act as hosts, and countless volunteers and donors.

This year there were over 90,000 honored guests from 16 countries on six continents who participated in the Night to Shine. I was impressed at how well our local event was organized, how much hard work obviously went into it and at how much there was to offer our honored guests once they arrived at the venue. The venue was decorated beautifully—from elegant table coverings to lighting, flowers, etc. The guests were all treated like kings and queens, literally—they each received a crown and a goody bag to take home. Guests also received a boutonniere or corsage, had their picture taken and walked the red carpet where the paparazzi took more pictures and cheered them on. While there, the guys could get their shoes shined and the ladies could get their hair and make-up retouched. They could also enjoy some cotton candy while taking a limo ride, sing karaoke and were treated to dinner and dancing—and boy did they dance!

The looks of excitement and the smiles on their faces was priceless and heartwarming. I don’t know who had more fun—the guests or the volunteers. It was a humble reminder that despite our differences, we are all God’s children, and I was honored to take part in the celebration. I can’t wait until next year to once again help the guests have their own special night—their Night to Shine.


I recently had the pleasure and privilege of volunteering at the Ohio Valley Night to Shine on Feb. 9.