PROM: Signs requesting donations and offering assistance for prom dresses line the halls of Northside High School. A junior at the school organized the project. (Mona Moore | Daily News)
PROM: Signs requesting donations and offering assistance for prom dresses line the halls of Northside High School. A junior at the school organized the project. (Mona Moore | Daily News)

Archived Story

PROM NIGHT: Community comes together to dress students for prom

Published 8:35pm Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Money will not be an issue for some students attending prom at Northside and Washington high schools.
A Northside High School junior organized a dress swap. She collected dresses from students at Northside, Pungo Christian Academy and Washington High School. The new or gently used dresses will be distributed to students who might not have otherwise been able to attend the prom.
Eliza Bowen came up with the plan. She said the project is about giving back to the community.
“These are difficult economic times, and this is the best way that I could think of to reach out to my peers and bring the community together,” she said. “This project is not about any one person but about all the people who are helping and all those that will benefit.”
So far, they have enlisted the help of a First Church of Christ in Washington, First Christian Church in Belhaven, His & Our Hands Skating Rink in Robersonville, Northside High School, Washington High School and Pungo Christian Academy.
Norman Stocks, with His & Our Hands, donated free passes for four people to his rink to anyone who donated a dress.
Georgie’s Sport and Oyster Bar in Belhaven donated dinner to one of the prom couples from the boutique. Every student who attends the boutique will be entered into the drawing for the dinner.
“Several businesses have also offered to donate dresses and accessories, including AVA Formals in Washington as well as an apparel shop, Atlanta Beach, in Atlanta, Ga.,” said Kris Bowen, Eliza’s mother. “Everyone that has been contacted has been willing to help and through these partnerships we will have not one, but two shops open.”
Eliza will open dress shops at First Church of Christ, 520 East 10th Street, in Washington and at First Christian Church, 419 East Main Street, in Belhaven, where students may pick out something to where. To avoid having dresses people recognize at the prom, Eliza will give away Washington dresses at Northside and vice versa.
She named the pop-up dress boutiques Pearl’s Prom Boutique after her great-grandmother, the late Pearl Monteith.
“She never had much, but was always reaching out to those in the community any way she could. Her incredible dedication is what has inspired me and many others,” Eliza said.

Pearl’s Prom Boutique will be opened Friday, March 15, from 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday, March 16, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at First Church of Christ and First Christian Church.
For more information, contact the churches at 252-946-5236 in Washington and 252-943-2369 in Belhaven.

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