Night to Shine 2023

Ainsley Ullyatt, Writer

Night To Shine is an extraordinary event that provides a special experience to those who are sometimes excluded or overlooked. It is free for everyone who attends, giving equal opportunity to all guests. This year many LuHi students volunteered as a buddy to a teen or adult with special needs. A total of 382 volunteers showed up to create an extraordinary night. 

Due to COVID-19, Night To Shine has been virtual for the past few years. This year though, the dance returned to being in person. For nine consecutive years, the Tim Tebow  Foundation has been putting on these events for kids with special needs. Each event includes a red carpet entrance, limousine rides, dancing, karaoke, gifts, a catered dinner, a Respite Room for parents and caregivers, and a crowning ceremony where every honored guest receives a crown or tiara.

For many people this is such a great experience and it was so fun getting to give these kids a night to remember. The teens who attend Night to Shine as honored guests are each a part of the disabled community and don’t always get to have the same experiences as regular high schoolers. Night to Shine is an opportunity to show love and support for the disabled community, and give teens with special needs a chance to have a prom and a fun night.  So much goes into giving these teens a chance to see that they can also have the time of their lives and be treated as kings and queens. 

Before the event, each volunteer received a video that gave instructions and outlined how the night would go. The video covers everything from check-in to the end of the night and encourages the volunteers to pray for the magical night ahead. The Tim Tebow Foundation, thankfully, left no room for confusion. Many people have complimented the team for answering questions they didn’t even know they had. Questions such as, “How do I introduce myself?” or “What do I do if a mishap occurs?” were answered before there was a chance to ask.

When Night to Shine finally began, it was incredible. 

Jake Brookhart, a freshman, said that each person had something they looked forward to.  His buddy was excited to dance. “The best song that played was the Cupid Shuffle,” Jake said. 

Night to Shine was an incredible success and truly showed the love of God to all the teens who attended both as honored guests, and as a buddy. It was an incredible chance for LuHi students to be the hands and feet of Jesus in our own community. They got to lead others to Christ by being examples of His love.