For the second year in a row, a Pickerington church will play host to a prom night for teens and adults with special needs.

Grace Fellowship Church Pickerington campus, 1449 Refugee Road, will host a prom for people with special needs ages 14 and older from 6-9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8.

The event is free for attendees and will include a red carpet walk as guests enter the church, limousine rides, a full meal and photographs.

Dubbed the Night to Shine, the evening is sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation, and is being held in connection with roughly 655 similar events to take place Feb. 8 worldwide.

Grace Fellowship member Brittney Seymour said the event will be the only Night to Shine held in Pickerington.

"Our church just has a place in our heart for people with special needs," Seymour said. "We think it's important to show love to people with special needs."

Walk-in attendees are invited, as long as they are at least 14 years old.

Seymour said prom attire is suggested, but not required.

"We say prom-night attire, but we want our guests to be comfortable," she said. "If they have a caregiver or need one to stay with them, that is an option.

"Every single guest we have is paired with a 'buddy.' Buddies are volunteers from within the church and community who are 18 and up and who've gone through a background check. All our buddies will be dressed in formal or semiformal attire."

According to the Tim Tebow Foundation, approximately 100,000 people with special needs will attend the Night to Shine worldwide and more than 200,000 volunteers will participate.

Seymour said Grace Fellowship is expecting a large turnout for its second year hosting the event.

"We applied to be a host church and 2018 was our first year hosting," she said. "It was amazing.

"We had over 300 guests last year, so we're doing it again."

Seymour, whose 12-year-old son, Skyler, has cerebral palsy, said the event is fun for all involved and provides attendees an opportunity to take part in an event they often haven't experienced.

She said that for many caregivers, it is an opportunity to take a break while their loved ones enjoy the prom.

"Some of our guests are young adults and some of our guests are over 70," she said. "It's really neat to see that group of people having a great time."

Additional information about the Night to Shine at Grace Fellowship is available on the church's website at gracefellowship.cc or by sending email to gracefellowshipnts@gmail.com.

nellis@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekNate