Some fathers and daughters were able to continue a bonding tradition, while others began one, on Saturday night at Paul G. Blazer High School.
The third-annual Tri-State Father-Daughter Dance welcomed a room of dads and daughters for a night of dancing and playing.
Garon Dent and his 9-year-old daughter, Abigail, attended their third dance together.
Dent said his daughter enjoys getting dressed up and spending quality time with Dad, but especially loves the different contests and getting Dent involved.
Just as he said that, Abigail came up and grabbed him to go dance the cha-cha-slide, a popular line dance.
“It’s my personal favorite, too,” he said with a smile as he was pulled onto the dance floor.
But while some dads and their daughters are veterans to the dance, others showed up for the first time.
Rick Lawson and his 6-year-old daughter, Abby, made their debut at the event, making a splash in coordinated, colorful clothing. Abby was wearing a light-blue Southern-bell-style gown with hair in a fancy up-do, makeup carefully applied and manicured nails.
“Her mom took her out to get her nails done and everything, the whole nine yards,” Lawson said. “She was so excited to go. She got the flier from school, but she’s in kindergarten so she can’t really read yet. My wife saw it in her folder and was like, ‘You’re going to this.’”
But Lawson happily obliged, saying his favorite part about the dance is just spending time with his little girl.
Bob Parks of Ashland and his daughter, Mattison, 10, use the dance as an opportunity to not only spend time together, but also spend time with friends.
“I love seeing her out there having fun and dancing with her friends,” he said as he sat to the side watching Mattison dance with a crowd of other young girls. “I feel like our kids don’t really have many opportunities to go somewhere and play, run barefoot and dance anymore.”
Since the dance does not start until 7 p.m., Parks said he and Mattison meet up with other dads and daughters for dinner beforehand as part of a tradition.
“Yeah, we make it into an event with all of us,” he said.
Three juniors at the high school coordinated the dance: Haley Pierce, Emily Ford and Doug Mollett. The dance was free and open to all, regardless of age or school district.
Keepsake photos taken at the event by Steven Thompson’s K-Mag Photography will be available on Facebook for free downloads.
LANA BELLAMY can be reached at email@example.com or (606) 326-2653.