Photo by Michelle Gabel | Central Current

Amini Mobley-Mims, 16, a Henninger High School student, poses for her mom, Monique Mims, right, and her sister, Shadaje Taylor, after trying on a gown during the Boom Babies Prom Dress Giveaway at Dr. Weeks Elementary School, 710 Hawley Ave. in Syracuse, on Monday evening.

Syracuse City School District students who needed a free dress were able to sort through more than 1,000 new prom dresses at the event, which also featured shoes, jewelry and pop-up dressing rooms. Event coordinator  Natalie Reeves, a Syracuse City School District employee, and Boom Babies assistant manager Erin VanZandt said they met when Reeves visited Boom Babies on Westcott Street to pay her respects after Lorraine Koury, 66, the owner, died September 15, 2022.  They began their plans then for the event at Dr. Weeks School, which ran both May 6 and May 15.

“Lorraine brought us together,” said Reeves.

Koury had operated the formal, casual, and vintage clothing store since 1986, when she started it, and although Boom Babies donated prom dresses for many years, this was the first come-and-shop event.

“It gave us a lot of joy to see the girls try on the dresses,” VanZandt said. “This was the first time many of the girls were able to try on fancy dresses they might not have been able to afford otherwise. As an organization, we love giving back to the community of Syracuse.” 

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