CONNECTICUT (FOX5NY.COM) - A cheering crowd welcomed some young adults as they walked the red carpet before an unforgettable experience. For the proud parents, watching their son or daughter go to prom is something many never dreamed would be possible.
Julia Hughes is the executive director of Grace Community Church in New Canaan, Connecticut. The church partnered with the Tim Tebow Foundation to host Night to Shine, a prom for young adults with special needs, including her son Ethan.
Tim Tebow, the former NFL player and Heisman Trophy winner, is a devout Christian. He was often seen on the football field sidelines kneeling in prayer. He told Fox and Friends that helping people with special needs is his passion.
On this night, no detail was left to chance. Prom dates were given corsages, hair and makeup, and even a shoe shine. Once they were camera-ready, guests enjoyed taking plenty of pictures. Everyone was also paired with a volunteer buddy who accompanied them throughout the night to make sure they had a great time. For example, Cara is 16-year-old high school student. She volunteered to be Eva's buddy.
Peter Saverine is the director of philanthropy for Star Inc., Lighting the Way, a nonprofit that helps people with intellectual and physical disabilities. He said that the volunteers get just as much out of the prom night as the guests.
When the time came to dance, the kids and their buddies let loose. Later, the crowd got a surprise video visit from Tim Tebow.
Then at the end of the night, everyone got a chance to be crowned king or queen of the prom.
More than 500 churches around the country and around the world help proms just like this one. The Tim Tebow Foundation does this around Valentine's Day because the holiday celebrates love.