Windham High School Event Benefits Breast Cancer Crusade

April 24, 2015


by Bob Gibbs

After many months of preparation and related learning experiences, the Windham High School SMILES Community Service Club, once again, combined the efforts of high school students, teacher mentors, and community groups for a highly entertaining production and evening out.  For the sixth year, the school brought to the stage its “Styles & SMILES” Charity Fashion Show and Auction on Saturday evening, April 11.

The runway promenade across the Windham stage featured infant to adult models donning spring and summer fashions from several area retail stores, including the GAP, David’s Bridal, Men’s Wearhouse, T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, Nike Outlet, and Stella & Dot.  Among those on the catwalk were WHS students and teachers, representatives from local organizations, various town officials, as well as WMUR-TV’s Shelley Walcott and Hayley LaPoint.  Entertainment also included multi-age Windham Wolverines Cheerleaders, a moving and original contemporary dance tribute, live music, DJ Denise LaCarruba Wendt, and student designs.  Hair and makeup was done by volunteer stylists from Artistic Creations Salon and Michael’s School.  Accessories were provided by Stella & Dot.

An originally choreographed contemporary dance tribute by the Londonderry Dance Academy produced the greatest applause of the evening.  Also, presented was a rousing number by Windham Wolverines Cheer.  Regional representatives from the national Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Foundation were on hand, and breast cancer survivors were recognized.

Launched in 2010 when the high school first opened, the Styles & SMILES event has been attended by over a thousand people, raised over $10,000, and knitted the entire community for a common cause.  It has been formally recognized by the national directors of the Avon Breast Cancer Foundation for the funds and awareness this event has consistently raised.

A win for all involved, the annual event provides unique management experiences for students, helps fund cancer care and research, and supports local “Team BellaDonna” in its ongoing cancer crusade.  The Windham-based multi-generational team, comprised of many impacted by breast cancer, has raised about $330,000 in the past decade through numerous year-round efforts.  The group will walk 39 miles over two days, May 17-18, as part of the Boston Avon Walk.

One-hundred percent of the “Styles & SMILES” admission at the door is directly distributed to the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.  Survivors attended the event for free.

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