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SLIDESHOW: No prom?!?! No problem! Parents step in to make a memorable Sneaker Ball for JP Freeman students

Memphis parents stepped up to create a magical prom night for their middle schoolers after the school unexpectedly canceled the planned events.

The “8th Grade Sneaker Ball” was held at Southbrook Mall on Saturday night, a joyous celebration filled with dancing, laughter, and fresh kicks.

Larry and Syreeta Dotson, parents of an eighth-grader at John P. Freeman Optional School, were the driving force behind the event. After their daughter shared the disappointing news of the cancellation, they quickly mobilized, gathering resources and support to ensure the students wouldn’t miss out on this cherished milestone.

“I was really sad. I was kind of upset about it,” Dodson’s daughter told WREG.

Larry, a booking agent, used his connections to secure the venue and other necessities for the event. Syreeta, alongside other parents, rallied the community to make the night special.

“Whitehaven is strong,” he said. “And as an alum of John P. Freeman, we could not let the hard work of our youth go without a grand celebration as they prepare to transition to high school.”

“The parents are in full support of celebrating the kids,” Syreeta Dodson said to WREG. “We see the hard work, we see the sleepless nights…and they need to be celebrated.”

The Sneaker Ball was a resounding success, with students reveling in the opportunity to dress up, dance, and create lasting memories. While the reason for the school’s cancellation remains unclear, the community’s response showcased the power of parents coming together to support their children.

TSD Photojournalist Gary S. Whitlow was on hand to snap pics from the Sneaker Ball . .  check them out above!

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