SHELLEY – Dust off your dancing shoes. It was Prom night at The Gables in Shelley on Friday.
For her senior project, Mikaela Jensen, a senior at Firth High School, decided to organize and sponsor a “Senior Prom” for the residents of The Gables, a care center.
“I was looking through a list of service projects and thought this one would be fun,” she said.
Mikaela chose The Gables because her grandmother, Zelda Moser, is a resident there.
After much preparation, come Friday, Mikaela and her friends loaded up her grandmother’s portable record player, brought along her 1950s record collection and headed to Shelley.
Earlier in the week, Mikaela had written out and delivered invitations to each resident.
The sitting room was decorated with raindrops to match the theme, “Life isn’t about waiting for the Storm to pass … It’s learning to Dance in the Rain.”
Early Friday afternoon, FHS senior girls came to The Gables to polish the ladies’ nails and do their hair, if they would like that.
“It’s so cute,” said Gable employee Katie Carl. “Everyone was so excited about getting dressed up.
“Even the ladies who did not come out to dance were excited to have their nails done,” she said.
FHS senior boys were the escorts. Each boy presented a lady with a corsage and asked if she would be his date for the evening.
The corsages were donated by All Occasion Floral in Shelley.
Refreshments were made by Mikaela and her family. They served homemade chocolates, homemade cookies and punch.
There were plenty of toes tapping and people swaying to the music.
Judy Nulph on accordion and her son, Greg Nulph, on bass, played familiar tunes—“The Beer Barrel Polka,” Somewhere My Love” and “In the Mood”—were some of them.
“It brings back lots of memories,” said resident Raynola Fowler.
Resident Patricia Dexter said she enjoyed the dance “immensely.”
She reported her dance partner, Coltyr Brewington, “never stepped on my feet.”
High school senior Talon Peterson was asked if he had practiced dancing. He replied, “We’re making it up as we go.”
Resident Eva Harker said, “It’s wonderful. Such a change from what I’m used to.”
FHS senior Cody Babneau said, “It’s really fun to get out with elderly people; see smiles on their faces as they relive their youth.”
At the end of the evening, one resident asked, “Is there more music? We don’t want it to end.”