Nonprofit makes sure prom for young people with special needs is 'A Night to Remember'

'A Night o Remember' gives students with special needs a chance to enjoy prom night. (A Night to Remember / Supplied)

Prom season is right around the corner and a special event aimed at making sure young people with special needs aren't left out is back after a couple of years off due to the pandemic.

"I'm excited for prom because I'm excited to see my friends over there," said 16-year-old Seth Wright.

For most teenagers, going to prom is a rite of passage.

But this year, about 75 young people with special needs hope to have an evening they'll never forget.

"I don't usually get out of the house very often so that's why I'm excited because I can get out and be around a lot of people," said 22-year-old Brandon Saldana.

A Night To Remember started five years ago to give young people with special needs a prom just for them.

Organizers say many teens like them are often left out of social gatherings with other people their age and this is an opportunity to focus on what they can do rather than what they can't.

"They don't get invited to friends' houses. They don't get invited to sleepovers. So this is something for them to be out and about and meet their peers and have fun with their peers and have a fun night as a typical teenager," said A Night To Remember's president and executive director, Samantha Pfeifer.

The Honored Guests as they are called, are provided with tuxes and prom dresses and the girls get their hair and makeup done the day of.

Then they are paired with a student host and walk the red carpet where they are photographed by paparazzi made up of friends and family, all free of charge.

"Getting everything. My dress, hairdo, shoes, makeup," said 19-year-old Emma Bennett.

``For special needs kids like me, it's nice to have a prom because it's nice to have fun, just be us and get to experience everyone cheering us on," said 22-year-old Mia Camp.

Their special night is still a couple of weeks away, where they hope to make memories that will last the rest of their lives.

"I'm going to enjoy myself and have a good time," said Saldana.