Prom Closet

Lonnie Johnson of Princeton shows off her gold prom dress during St. Andrew UMC's annual Prom Closet in 2018. 

As the spring semester begins in North Texas, high school students are gearing up for prom season. The celebration can carry a heavy price tag for some families, but St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Plano wants to help.

Free formal dresses and accessories will be available to students through its 12th annual Prom Closet event in February. 

Beginning Jan. 25, St. Andrew will be taking donations in a collection drive. Community members are encouraged to bring dresses, accessories and shoes to 1401 Mira Vista Blvd. in Plano on the east side of the building in room 133. The church is open for drop-offs from 8:30 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Friday, and 9 a.m. until 11 a.m. on Saturday. 

According to a press release, dress sizes 0, 2, and 12 and above are needed the most. The St. Andrew Prom Closet has also created an Amazon wishlist that can be accessed at

Students can select dresses and accessories from the church from 4-8 p.m. Feb. 18-20 and 9 a.m.-noon Feb. 22. The event will take place in the Smith Worship Center at St. Andrew at 5801 W. Plano Parkway. 

Many of the dresses at previous Prom Closets were never before worn and ranged in sizes from 0 to 28. The event requires the student to be present during the selection. 

“Last year we served 1,339 shoppers from 251 schools,” Prom Closet organizer Devra Helffrich said in a release. “Obviously, we could not do this without the support of the community, church members and volunteers, including all of those who donate to this annual program.” 

Prom Closet was created in 2009 for students in need of financial help to attend prom. 

“Last year the Prom Closet provided dresses and accessories to two exchange students from Germany and Switzerland,” Helffrich said. “They had only heard of prom in the movies and were so excited to each find a dress and experience prom in the United States. Both selected the first dress they tried on and were all smiles as they selected jewelry, shoes and purses.”

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