Expanding on its prom program, the Marlinton Woman’s Club has a Prom Shop full of brand new and slightly used gowns available for girls in Pocahontas County.
The shop is open every Saturday in January, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and is located in the blue house beside Red Oak Realty in Marlinton.
A member of the club contacted friends in Texas who put her in contact with Keri’s Fairy Godmother Foundation in Austin, Texas, which specializes in donating prom dresses and accessories.
Keri’s put together a collection of 200 dresses to send to the club. The only cost to the club was for shipping. The club quickly approved the $250 for shipping and contacted the boutique to set the dresses in motion.
Plans changed as boutique owner Keri Byer chose to send more dresses and a few bags of shoes. At first, Byer told the Woman’s Club the shipping amount would raise, but then she received what she called a Christmas miracle.
Byer’s landlord, John Cannon, volunteered to drive the dresses to Pocahontas County because he “likes road trips.” The shipping money was given to Cannon for travel expenses.
The Prom Shop was originally slated to be at Cheryl’s Beauty and Beyond but due to a lack of space, the Woman’s Club had to find a new spot.
Member Kate Neitling asked her landlord if the club could use the first floor of her apartment building and the shop was quickly moved.
As word spread to businesses and individuals that the Woman’s Club was providing free prom dresses, donations for displays came pouring in. The Family Dollar and Dollar General, both in Marlinton, donated hangers for the dresses and Cheryl’s Beauty and Beyond donated dowels. The Men’s Shop had clothing racks available to use, as well.
Neitling took the reins of the project and decorated the space, turning it into a modest boutique.
The boutique boasts short and long gowns in a variety of sizes, in every color of the rainbow – and even animal prints.
For more information on Keri’s Fairy Godmother Foundation, visit www.austinfairygodmother.org
Suzanne Stewart may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org