Night to Shine
February 19, 2019 | by Jake Dubé
On Friday, February 8th, Sunnybrook Community Church in Sioux City, IA held the annual ‘Night to Shine’ event. According to the churches’ description, it is an unforgettable prom night experience, centered on God’s love, for people with special needs ages 14 and older.
From a glamorous limo to hundreds of participants, this was a night for many to remember. This special occasion is held by more than 500 churches worldwide with over 90,000 honored guests and of 175,000 volunteers. This year’s annual event was sponsored by The Tim Tebow Foundation.
Nate Frankman, a junior Briar Cliff student from Papillion, NE, was in attendance this year as a volunteer and date to one of the guests being honored.
“Night to shine was one of the most fun nights I’ve had in a really long time,” stated Frankman. “Between dancing, taking pictures, and eating dinner with my date, it was a complete blast and I definitely plan on coming back next year,” added the Nebraska native.
Elle Stellar was another volunteer at this event. She reflected on her time with her date and what a ‘Night to Shine’ means to her.
“Honestly, just to get and see them get the opportunity that not all people get to go through is awesome and it just puts a smile on my face,” said Stellar.
Stellar’s date was a 14-year-old boy named Erik Guevara who has autism. Guevera was very shocked and surprised the amount of people in attendance and although being frightened at first, enjoyed his memorable night.
“When I first came here, I was nervous because I have never been around this many people before,” said Guevera. “I feel good though and happy,” added Guevera.
For this event, there were activities including the karaoke room in the back, the picture station, and even the dance floor that was the most popular.
One of the most important roles turned out to be simple as someone standing at the red carpet and connecting with the honorary guests by making them feel welcome. Matt Delzell helped accomplished this.
“My role is not only to just engage and make people feel special because they are special, but to put value into their night, to learn their names, and to share the love,” stated Delzell.
When asked what the night and event meant to him, the smile in Delzell’s face and pure joy in his voice was clearly evident as his religious values came to light.
“A ‘Night to Shine’ is a moment to give back. I definitely believe in the gospel, spreading the love of Jesus and it’s just such a great time to serve and to show value is equal across the board,” said Delzell.
If you would like to be a part of this very special event next year, the church and volunteers proudly encourage anyone to sign up when the time comes.