It was a magical evening for dads and their daughter at Shelbyville High School on Saturday, February 8. More than 300 guests attended and danced the night away and raised almost $5,000 for the SHS auditorium renovation.

High School Principal Kyle Ladd, a young father himself, came up with the idea for the dance and had no trouble getting help from teachers, students and the community to make the evening special for dads and their girls.

“I had hope for maybe 100 people, since it was the first year,” Ladd said. “I was astounded. We had a line outside the door for more than 15 minutes. I thought that Shelbyville would respond to this event, because we have so many families involved in the school, but this exceeded expectations.”

According to Ladd, the Daddy Daughter Dance hosted by Shelbyville High School provided girls with a chance to spend a special evening with their dad. Of note, persons of significant influence were allowed to attend in place of a parent.

“It is often said that a little girl’s dad becomes the standard through which they judge all men,” Ladd says. “If that adage holds true, the young men in our community have some incredibly high expectations to live up to.”

Dads paid $35 to attend and could bring as many daughters as they wanted. The girls got a long stem flower and there were various activities they could participate in, including a raffle of Frozen Theme items.

“We were so encouraged seeing all of the eager participants that shared in this special experience, and we remain humbly committed to creating opportunities that encourage family involvement.

“Perhaps we are biased, but we wholeheartedly believe that there is no better place to raise a child than right here in Shelbyville,” Ladd said. “A beautiful community, supportive families, and a first class school system are just a few reasons to be thankful and proud.”

Ladd was overwhelmed by the response of the community to help in the project.

“It is important to note all of the help received when putting together this community event,” Ladd said. “Camice Barker of Barker’s Balloonery and Tuxedo Rental, decorated the event at no cost to the school district. Her creativity continues to amaze us all.

“Jamie McDonald provided photography services all throughout the event, and for that, we will all be forever thankful. Late Bloomer on Main donated 300 flowers to the event without the slightest bit of hesitation.

Several school organizations were involved in this effort alongside HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital and Hair MD.

The Frozen Themed Raffle Basket was awarded to a 1st grade student within the Shelbyville School District. That, in itself, was inspired by a donation received courtesy of The Little Theatre on the Square.

“Lastly, it would be foolish to not extend a most sincere thank you to all of the teachers and students who volunteered their time and talent at the event. All involved in the planning and preparation process were absolutely incredible,” Ladd said. “Most importantly, shout out to all the awesome dads who danced their little hearts out all night. Your dance moves were rivaled only by those of your daughter.”

Ladd said there were 132 dads at the event and over 300 guests. All proceeds from the Daddy Daughter Dance will be directed toward the auditorium renovation initiative.

Ladd reminds everyone to be on the lookout for the Mommy and Son Night Out scheduled for Saturday, March 18, 2020.

John Curtis can be reached at

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