Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

February 21, 2013

Letter: Prom gown program helps many, is supported by many

The Andover Townsman

---- — Editor, Townsman:

Priceless Prom Gown Program has existed since 2007 as a 501c3 noprofit organization that provides prom gowns to financially challenged high school students in the Merrimack Valley area and is growing strong. Our core organizers are Carol Lanni, Carla Byrne and Penny Guerrera Perez and myself.

We are blessed to have a talented individual on our organizing committee: Penny who has designed a wonderful logo, professional brochures and posters for us in her spare time for a couple of years . We have some volunteers and are in need of more dedicated help to run our dress boutiques on March 2 and 16 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and April 6 and 27 from noon to 5 p.m. for dress give-a-ways to our 150 Merrimack Valley students as well as high school students as far away as Lewiston, Maine and Cranston, R.I. At the boutiques, we ask for a $10 donation of the students to keep the program going. We ask for students who plan to attend the boutiques that they contact Carol through our web page to setup a time to try on dresses at the scheduled boutique days.

We especially need individuals to help us clean the shop, steam dresses and reorganize our newly acquired dresses from the dresses greater than three years of age, which we will pack and send to Hurricane Sandy victims this Saturday, Feb 23. We are donating dresses to Hurricane Sandy victims in two New York areas and we are in need of a free box truck and money for transportation to send the prom dresses. If you can help organizing the boutique or with use of a truck contact Carol Lanni, founder and president of the program, at

We are only able to help other organizations due the kindness and generous donations shown to us by bridal stores and private individuals. Organizations such as John Anton Cleaners of Andover, which has cleaned and collected dresses for five years, as well as Bliss Salon in North Andover and Whole Foods of Andover will collect people’s former prom dresses through April 15.

We love what we do, greatly appreciate the generosity of Merrimack Valley businesses and individuals. We also have year-round dress drop-off sites.

That is why we are able to help other needy organizations, as we are able to pass on stylish dresses to a variety of organizations such as Lowell Domestic Violence Convention in March; dedicated students of Timberlane High School, and now financially devastated Hurricane Sandy victims. Dedicated students at North Andover High School are collecting prom gowns for us and we have been blessed by the donation of dresses from supportive Newbury High School students in December.

At our boutiques through the generosity of local businesses we have been able to provide fun and very generous raffle items.

Also to raise money to support our rent we sell used bridal gowns and mother-of-the-bride dresses. We accept donations of these items that are current and in good condition. We always accept donations of stylish prom dresses that are three years old or younger. For more information and to read about us please visit

Pam Lundstrom

South Main Street