Three Southwest Florida churches taking part in worldwide Night to Shine event

Reporter: Annalise Iraola Writer: Matthew Seaver
Published: Updated:

Night to Shine is an event hosted by churches all around the world. The event’s goal is to celebrate people with special needs. Here in Southwest Florida, three churches will be participating.

Night to Shine is all about empowering people and spreading joy to everyone involved. This is the first time in three years the event has been held in person, and the men and women attending Friday can’t wait.

It was a day of pampering for ladies at The Florida Academy ahead of Friday’s big night. The Tim Tebow Foundation’s Night to Shine is held at three different locations in Southwest Florida.

New Hope Ministries in Collier County, Cross Point Christian in Cape Coral, and City Christian in Cape Coral are the three churches participating.

Cleojann Pappas and Kim Williams can hardly wait. “I’m gonna have everything fluffed up. Nails done, makeup,” said Williams.

Preparations for the big night included some self-care and a little dancing. “I probably do The Electric Slide or the Cupid Shuffle. I’ll probably do either or,” said Pappas.

Jaisabel Blanco is the instructor and chair of nail technology at The Florida Academy. The school provided complimentary services for all Night to Shine attendees.

“It’s something that is really exciting because you’re doing something with a purpose. So you’re not only just doing a manicure, you’re doing a manicure because they’re having a special night that you actually want to make it like really wonderful,” said Blanco.

Night to Shine, through hundreds of churches and thousands of volunteers, is a worldwide movement to change Valentine’s Day into a day that honors people with special needs.

“They will feel extremely happy, special, and they will feel like it’s a whole day just for them. It’s like this day is about you. We’re gonna make sure that you look beautiful, that you look amazing, that you look handsome. And you are going to enjoy your day because this is for you,” Blanco said.

The event is free and open to anyone living with disabilities ages 14 and up. Each guest will receive a crown or tiara because they are all kings and queens of the evening.

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