'The Cinderella Affair' Makes Prom Affordable

Free prom dresses for high schoolers


When you add together the price of the dress, shoes and the jewelry, prom can be expensive.

With high school prom season around the corner, there's a volunteer group in Arizona alleviating those costs with free dresses and accessories. 

The Cinderella Affair is a volunteer-run organization in Chandler, Ariz. that supplies prom dresses, shoes, jewelry and purses to high school juniors and seniors. 

Sponsored by the East Valley Women's League, The Cinderella Affair started in 2002. In their first year, 122 dresses were given away, but since then, more than 12,000 prom dresses have been given away.

"These days a prom dress can cost anywhere from $100 to $500," said Traci Estenson, Project Manager of The Cinderella Affair. "At least this is a way they can cut down their expense."

Students can sift through multiple rooms containing hundreds of prom dresses, dozens of pairs of shoes, a wall of handbags and a room filled with pieces of jewelry, all for free. 

If the perfectly fitting shoe isn't available, The Cinderella Affair has funds set aside to help prom-goers get their perfect pair. 

The Cinderella Affair also supports the LGBTQ community and carries a limited amount of suits and other wardrobe options. 

Any junior or senior in high school can stop by The Cinderella Affair (411 N. McKemy Avenue, Chandler, Ariz.) on March 31 or April 7 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. to find your perfect prom dress. Just make sure you bring your student I.D.

There are no reservations, and the events are first-come-first-serve. Estenson suggests arriving early on those mornings. 

"There’s no sign up to come for a dress. You just need to come and wait in line for a dress and sometimes the lines can be very long," said Estenson.

If you would like to donate to The Cinderella Affair, they accept gently used or new prom dresses, shoes, purses, and jewelry. There is a donation bin at their location in Chandler.  

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