Let’s Dance: Event puts spotlight on fathers, daughters

Fathers and daughters throughout Palatka will have the chance to don tuxedos and dresses and create lifelong memories at a cotillion style event this weekend.

The inaugural Father Daughter Dance program will take place 6 p.m. — 9 p.m. Saturday at Palatka High School, 302 Mellon Road in Palatka.

Fathers and daughters are not the only residents invited to put on their formal wear and dancing shoes Saturday. Whether they are an uncle, grandfather or any other sort of influence in a young girl’s life, they are invited to take part in the event. 

Palatka native La’Farrah Davis along with planning committee members Lytinia McCullough and Palatka City Commissioner Tammie McCaskill has spent the last several months organizing and promoting the event.  

Along with a cotillion style stance, the Father Daughter program will consist of a formal dinner, live entertainment, presentations of wrist corsages to the daughters and boutonnieres for the father figures and more.

Davis said countless father figures have signed up for the event, and community members have stepped up for the young girls without father figures to escort them. Gerald Taylor of Palatka is one father participating Saturday, and he said the event presents an important opportunity to all of those involved.

“It brings tears to my eyes knowing that this will be a lasting memory that will be etched in time with girls,” Taylor said. “The father and daughter event is important in my eyes because, with all the negative press regarding absent fathers, this is a true reflection that fathers and male father figures do exist and want the best for our daughters.”

Davis, a Jacksonville resident, travels to Palatka each weekend to give back to community youth through community events, and proceeds from the Father Daughter Dance will go toward funding future community activities in the area.

Others in the community have taken notice of Davis’ mission to make a positive impact in the lives of children in the area, she said. This has led to a mountain of support from community leaders, volunteers and more as planning for the dance comes to a close.

“It’s the support and participation from the community, my family and friends that contribute to the success of the event,” she said.

Davis has already seen the program benefit some father and daughters as she watches them interact as they practice for the program. Seeing groups smile and bond with one another has been a special sight, she said. 

“It gives me great joy to see the smiles on the fathers and daughters faces as they engage with each other during the rehearsals for the special choreograph dance presentations,” she said. “I’m beyond grateful for the support and participation I have received from all the father figures and the daughters.”

Cecil Edwards of Palatka is one of these fathers who shared weekend after weekend with his daughter preparing for the event. From the fellow father figures to Davis and her volunteers, everyone involved in the event is doing something of great importance, he said.

“I’m overcome with joy to see so many men step up and make this event a success.  It shows me that with direction, we can be the change we want to see,” he said. “It is important to see all men loving their daughters.  Representation matters and we must show our children that we are there for them.”

Tickets for guests can be bought in advance for $12 or bought at the door for $15. For information, contact Davis at 813-943-5499.

Palatka Daily News

1825 St. Johns Ave.
Palatka, FL 32177
(386) 312-5200


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