Wendell Misfit Prom to benefit North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy

  • The theme of the 2019 Misfit Prom, pictured, was “PROM-I-CON.” This year’s theme is “Follow The Yellow Dirt Road.” A parade from the Wendell Town Common to Deja Brew Cafe & Pub at 57 Lockes Village Road will step off at 6 p.m. and the prom is scheduled to begin at 6:30. Contributed Photo

  • The theme of the 2019 Misfit Prom, pictured, was “PROM-I-CON.” This year’s theme is “Follow The Yellow Dirt Road.” A parade from the Wendell Town Common to Deja Brew Cafe & Pub at 57 Lockes Village Road will step off at 6 p.m. and the prom is scheduled to begin at 6:30. Contributed Photo

  • The theme of the 2019 Misfit Prom, pictured, was “PROM-I-CON.” This year’s theme is “Follow The Yellow Dirt Road.” A parade from the Wendell Town Common to Deja Brew Cafe & Pub at 57 Lockes Village Road will step off at 6 p.m. and the prom is scheduled to begin at 6:30. Contributed Photo

Staff Writer
Published: 6/16/2022 4:20:46 PM
Modified: 6/16/2022 4:18:31 PM

WENDELL — Organizers of the annual Wendell Misfit Prom get together to brainstorm theme ideas each year and often wind up tabling some favorites for future use.

The community event’s theme a few years ago was “Alice in Wendelland.” Those in charge enjoyed tying their town with a fantastical world created by English author Lewis Carroll and decided to revisit the idea this year. The result is the 2022 Wendell Misfit Prom: Follow The Yellow Dirt Road, a nod to the classic song from “The Wizard of Oz,” set for Saturday.

“We always feel like Wendell is like this mysterious place, we’re not sure if it’s real or not. And we thought (‘Alice in Wendelland’) was a fun theme,” organizer Linnea Winter said. “It’s been a theme we’ve been wanting to do for a lot of years.”

A parade from the Wendell Town Common to Deja Brew Cafe & Pub at 57 Lockes Village Road will step off at 6 p.m. and the prom is scheduled to begin at 6:30. Wendell Misfit Proms serve as community fundraisers, and this year’s beneficiary is North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy, a nonprofit that forms matches between people with and without developmental disabilities or mental health issues.

Tickets are available in advance at the Wendell Country Store or online at bit.ly/3OjNJTs for $17, or at the door for $20. This will be the first Wendell Misfit Prom since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy was selected, in part, because Executive Director Nate Johnson knows prom organizers Genevieve Gaignard and Kelly Suprenant from their days at Ralph C. Mahar Regional School together. Johnson mentioned he reached out to Gaignard to gauge ideas for fundraisers and his former schoolmate suggested the Misfit Prom.

“We’re a community organization, so the fact that this is a community grassroots fundraiser based in Wendell just fits really well with it,” he said, adding that money generated will be used to make and support matches.

Johnson also said he plans to attend this year’s event.

“I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “I’ve got some rainbow suspenders, so I’m going to break those out.”

Gaignard said she plans to attend dressed as “the yellow brick road,” with a golden gown, elaborate train and golden butterflies in her hair.

“I’m always excited to see how people interpret the theme,” she said.

Winter said she plans to attend dressed as “what Dorothy would look like if she was going to a ball after they fixed her up in the Emerald City.”

Music will be provided by Empress Erin and Juicy Jim, party DJs who are also members of the band Lovewhip. The Area 51 Food Cart will serve food.

According to Winter, the prom’s other organizers are Donna Horn, Charlsie Gorski, Lisa Winter, Patti Scutari and Mez Ziemba.

Horn said she started the Misfit Prom in 2009 as a community-building event.

“I started the prom because I was frustrated that there was no place where a person could wear a ballgown. You couldn’t dress up anywhere,” she said. “The last time a person was able to do that was in their high school prom. I wanted to do a prom re-do for people so they could wear what they wanted, go with who they wanted.

“(It’s) a place where people could be fabulous even if they’re not a member of the royal family or Lady Gaga,” she added. “I had no idea it would ... be a yearly thing.”

Reach Domenic Poli at: dpoli@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 262.


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