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Kristen's Kloset Coming to Downtown Southington

For some in town, the annual program offered by Southington Youth Services is the only way to afford

Prom is more than a dance for high school students in town – it’s a rite of passage. But there are those who can barely afford to pay for a ticket, let alone buy a dress or rent a tuxedo for the event.

Fortunately there is another way, thanks to the volunteer efforts of Kristen’s Kloset, and in 2013 local residents will be able to enjoy their prom shopping in the heart of downtown Southington. The annual program will return on March 9 with the annual location this year set inside the Gura Building at Southington Town Hall.

The annual program, now in it’s seventh year, has grown by leaps and bounds, said Youth Services Director Susan Saucier, and for the department, returning to the building and offices where the concept first came to fruition signifies a homecoming.

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“Each year, the shop is in a different location and this year we were able to secure the Gura Building,” Saucier said.

It’s a fitting use of the building, which could soon be transformed into a community arts center as Southington Community Cultural Arts looks to raise funds for the project. The building is located at 93 Main Street, central to all parts of the community.

“Besides helping girls with gowns and such, Kristen’s Kloset assists boys with their prom related expenses such as tuxes and flowers,” Saucier said. “The program is presently in its seventh year of operation and has steadily increased the number of students it has helped. Lastyear, Kristen’s Kloset provided gowns and accessories to 287 girls who came from all over Connecticut and tuxes for 10 Southington boys.”

The program initially started with just dresses and gowns and was created as a tribute to Kristen Warner, who was killed in a car accident in 2004. She had always talked about what prom would be like better had the opportunity to go.

This year, the store will be open on Tuesdays from 2:30 – 6 p.m., Thursdays from 2:30 – 8 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. The grand opening will be March 9.

For more information, Southington High School seniors can visit their guidance counselor to get more information or call Youth Services at (860) 276-6281.

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