Community Baptist Church holding ‘Night to Shine’
Published 12:00 pm Friday, January 11, 2019
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
ALABASTER – For Community Baptist Church Night to Shine coordinator Mandy Mealer, few things can top the smiles on the children’s and adults’ faces as they arrive to a red carpet welcome at the event.
“The special guests and their caretakers are greeted by valet parking upon entering the registration area. Once a guest is paired with their own personal buddy for the evening, they enjoy a limo ride to the red carpet. There they enter the prom in style with a crowd of fans and paparazzi cheering them along the way,” Mealer said.
“In my opinion, the greatest moments of the entire event is seeing the faces of our guests as they arrive on the red carpet,” she added. “It’s truly an indescribable blessing. Pure joy, fun and excitement all just for them. It’s always amazing to see love in action.”
This year’s Night to Shine is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 8 from 6-9 p.m. at the church, which is off Shelby County 17 in Maylene. To register as an attendee or volunteer, visit Cbcmaylene.org/nighttoshine.
Community Baptist Church started the Night to Shine event three years ago by teaming up with the Tim Tebow Foundation to provide a prom-like experience for local children and adults with special needs.
After the guests are greeted by the red carpet welcome, they enter the church and receive a boutonniere or corsage before they enter the dance floor in the sanctuary with a professional DJ bringing providing music and lights. Guests also enjoy a game room, karaoke, hair salon, shoe shine and a fun photo booth. The church offers a buffet of food and desserts, and caretakers are invited to remain on campus to enjoy a meal, coffee and fellowship time while enjoying the ability to view the prom over livestream.
Since the church’s first Night to Shine event in 2017, it has grown steadily.
“This will be our third year to host Night to Shine, and we are anticipating the largest attendance yet,” Mealer said. “We grew from honoring 50 guests in 2017 to 75 guests in 2018. This year we are hopeful for 100.”
In addition to providing the attendees with a fun evening, the event also serves a larger purpose.
“Our goal and that of the Tim Tebow Foundation is to show the love of Christ to people and their families in our community that are often overlooked. We strive to offer a caring and safe environment for our guests to enjoy an evening of celebration of their life,” Mealer said. “As each guest is crowned king or queen, we pray for them in hopes of them knowing that not only do we at Community Baptist Church love them, but more importantly God loves them.”