Indy Style

Local program helps give teens prom formal wear for FREE

Any parent or teen knows that when it comes to prom, the price tag can be a hefty one. So don’t worry about the dress this year. Project Prom is giving you one…. for FREE! Kelly Staten, Adult Library, Johnson County Public Library and Jonna Kauffman, Zeta Tau Alpha, President, Franklin Chapter, share more!

Project Prom has provided teens formal wear for free for the past 5 years:

• Project Prom is a program held annually at the Johnson County Public Library. The program is held at two different branch locations each year and will be at the Franklin Branch March 17 – 19 and the White River Branch April 7 – 9.

• We started this program five years ago because we saw a need in the community that we could fill. The library’s mission is to provide access to a wide range of resources and this is just another way we can help people, especially teens.

• All of our dresses and men’s formal wear are donated to us. This year we are especially in need of plus sizes and tuxedos. All donations can be dropped off at any JCPL location or Sophia’s Bridal Tux & Prom. We just ask that dresses be current style, within the last three to four years and that they be clean and in good condition.

• For the last several years, we have partnered with various businesses in the area including Girls, Inc. and Sophia’s Bridal Tux & Prom in Southport. This year we are partnering with Zeta Tau Alpha at Franklin College and Jonna can talk a little bit more about their service project.

As Zeta Tau Alphas, Jonna says they’re committed to serving. She explains how the idea got started:

•So for our service project this semester we wanted to do something that benefited our community

•Because those are the very people that support us and help us achieve our goals

• My mom kept asking me if I wanted my prom dresses or not because they were taking up space in our closet so I decided I just wanted to donate them

• So I figured that others girls in our chapter were having similar issues

• So I asked our chapter what they thought about this and about donating their prom dresses and they were all for giving their dresses to financially strained students who couldn’t afford one

• So I researched and found that some schools do it and the surrounding libraries rotate doing it. I called the Johnson County Public Library, which is right down the road from our school, and found out they were putting this event on which was perfect.

• So I asked if we could partner with them for this and they graciously said yes and put our logos on marketing material

• And then we provided around 75-100 dresses and will help students during the three days at the library find their perfect dresses and accessories to make them feel like cinderella and Prince Charming at their prom!

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Shoe art by Kokomo native stolen from northern Indiana museum

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WISH) — A shoe by an Indiana native was stolen Saturday from a northern Indiana art museum.

South Bend Museum of Art is seeking help to find the thief of a shoe from the piece titled “Welcome Knives,” part of an exhibit by Kokomo native Chris Francis that’s traveled to other U.S. museums. His work has been described as wearable architecture.

The shoe disappeared between 2 and 5 p.m. Saturday while the museum was open. The museum staff and city police are reviewing surveillance video from the Century Center to gain a lead. South Bend’s show called “Chris Francis: Modern Bespoke 21st Century Shoe Art” is in the downtown Century Center through April 5.

Francis, who grew up in Kokomo and now lives in Los Angeles, said in a statement that he was “saddened to be informed that someone has chosen to steal the piece ‘Welcome Knives’ from the exhibition. The shoes exhibited are all documented and catalogued works of art that have shown in many museums. Every shoe in the exhibition is one of a kind, with no others in existence making them very different than shoes we find in stores.”

Francis has created shoes for runway shows and for celebrities, including Lady Gaga and the members of Kiss and The Sex Pistols.

His work was displayed late last year on the Purdue University campus.

Anyone with information was asked to call the South Bend Police Department at (574) 235.9201 or contact the South Bend Museum of Art via email at, or through the museum’s social media accounts: Facebook, @SouthBendMuseumofArt; Twitter, @southbendart; Instagram, @southbendart.