One hundred fifty patients and their guests showcased glamorous dresses and snazzy tuxedoes as they walked the red carpet in elegant style prior to the recent Teen Formal at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. St. Jude employees and parents took their places along a red carpet to cheer on patients and their dates.
The teens rode through downtown Memphis before the limousines dropped them off at the St. Jude campus.
White lights strung over the dance floor created the effect of a large circus tent, echoing the event's theme of “Under the Big Top.” A DJ spun tunes that drew an eager crowd to the dance floor. During a break, attendees snapped selfies and enjoyed snacks while watching three aerialists perform splits, somersaults and backbends using hoops and silk ropes.
While the magic lasted only an evening, the annual bash created unforgettable memories for patients, parents and Child Life staff.
Teen Formal is one of several events Child Life coordinates to provide patients with a sense of normalcy during their treatment while they miss important milestones at home.
“Some of the parents are moved to tears because they are so happy their kids got to have this normal experience,” said Child Life Specialist Clare Gardner, who served as the lead for this year's event. "It's so amazing to see these kids smile and have a great time.”