Local teens looking to attend their prom won’t need to go far or pay a high price for their formal wear. That’s because the Sacramento Public Library is giving away free prom attire throughout March and April at various library locations.
The prom drive, which began in 2013, is the library’s unique way of serving the community’s youth. It was started as an experimental program by the North Highlands-Antelope Library Teen Advisory Board. Then, it was picked up by other locations. The drive helps those who can't afford formal wear for school events.
According to Sacramento Public Library branch supervisor Bridget Bagne, formal events might be intimidating for teens.
“This is another way to encourage them to participate in memory-making opportunities while they’re still young,” she says.
The collection starts in February where locals can drop off gently used formal wear. This year’s drive started off with a deluge of dresses. But now, Bagne says students can also choose from a variety of clothes including menswear, like shirts, suits, ties and accessories.
Donations are gathered at different locations and then transferred to other regions. Bagne describes this a “redistribution of wealth.”
The prom drive effort has inspired similar events in other parts of the country, including Florida and Pennsylvania.
“We’ve been called about other prom events being held in other states. We’re really kind of setting a trend nationwide here in Sacramento,” says Bagne.
Students can visit one of the participating libraries on the location’s scheduled date to pick up items. Each site will have at least 100 pieces to offer, according to Bagne.
Students must present their valid school ID in order to get a dress or suit and there is limited space available to try on different items. Students are asked not to wear any makeup so the clothes won’t get ruined.
Donors can still drop off items at any participating library location through Saturday March 4.
Sylvan Oaks Library – March 4, Saturday, 12 p.m. - 2 p.m.
Franklin Community Library – March 11, Saturday, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
South Natomas Library – March 11, Saturday, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Belle Cooledge Library – March 18, Saturday, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Fair Oaks Library – March 18, Saturday, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Carmichael Library – March 25, Saturday, 1 p.m. - 3 p.m.
McKinley Library – March 25, Saturday, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Arden-Dimick Library – April 1, Saturday, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Southgate Library – April 15, Saturday, 1 p.m. - 3 p.m.