Prom on the beach

Affirmations annual Youth Prom gives LGBT teens an accepting environment

By Crystal A. Proxmire

It was a beach blastin' good time for the more than 75 teenagers who attended the Youth Prom at Affirmations on May 29. Dancing with friends in their flip flops and swimwear, the youngsters were able to celebrate prom comfortably among friends and allies.

Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer youth came out for the annual celebration that marks the beginning of summer. "We had dancing, food and other yummy treats in our Tiki Hut, a.k.a. the Cyber Center, ShutterBooth for photos, volleyball and other beach games in our Sand Box, a.k.a the Community Room," said Kim Phillips-Knope, Affirmations' program director. There was also a luau and "survivor night" theme to the party. A king, queen and ace were crowned without regard to gender labels, and a sporty red convertible was on loan from General Motors for the night so attendees could have their picture taken in style.

The youth program is supported by a grant from the United Way and by the support of community members who donate to the center.

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