A History of The Cinderella Charity Ball
The Cinderella Ball has been held annually for over 50 years. This event is planned by the Ladies’ Auxiliary, which has around 70 members and is open to any women in the community. The only expenses incurred are those to put on the Ball. There are no Auxiliary salaries as it is a completely volunteer, non-profit organization. The goal of the Cinderella Ball is to raise as much money as possible for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Arlington by reaching out to the community. The funds also provide a $2000 scholarship for future educational needs of the Boys & Girls Clubs’ Youth of the Year. Each fall, the previous year’s candidates give out two applications each to young women they feel would be good nominees for the current year. An article is also published in the newspaper so that the general public knows that applications may be picked up at the Boys & Girls Club with any individual being able to nominate a girl. There is no limit to the number of girls that may apply, but the maximum the Ladies’ Auxiliary will select is twenty. The only requirements applicants must meet are: 1. currently be a sophomore or junior in high school 2. attend school within the Arlington city limits or reside within the Arlington city limits. The applications must be filled out completely with a listing of the girl’s school, community, and church activities and honors, as well as academic standing. There is also an area to include the parents’ community activities and involvement. Selection is based on the entire girl with leadership abilities and community interest being as important as academic successes. It is hoped that each year the girls selected as candidates will be the best in all areas. This is a very difficult process since those applying are all outstanding and selection is limited to twenty.
Each girl conducts her own individual, seven week campaign. All candidates start and finish on the same dates with various events held during that time period to honor them. At the culmination of their campaigns, the Cinderella Ball is held to honor their exceptional efforts. Their campaigns consist of individual mailings, telephone calling and speaking before community organizations, (Rotary; Lions; etc). On their own, the candidates write personal letters to be mailed, follow up with phone calls and arrange their own speaking schedule. Their letters tell a little about themselves and a lot about the Boys & Girls Clubs of Arlington. Recipients receive Cinderella Ball information and are asked to buy tickets or make a charitable donation. Their follow-up phone calls cover the same information and also answer any questions the donor might have. Each candidate makes up her own mailing list of family, friends, community associates, and business contacts. It is in this manner that a new audience is reached each year. It is so important that the word of the Boys & Girls Clubs gets spread a little farther! We feel the longevity of this event is due to the fact that each year with new candidates comes a new audience to join the organization’s annual supporters.
There are also three scholarship awards given the night of the Ball: 1st Place is $1500, 2nd Place is $1000, 3rd Place is $750. The candidates can apply for this if they wish with selection being based totally upon their grades, teacher recommendations and a personal essay. There is no consideration given to what the candidate has raised (in fact no one knows at the time of the Scholarship selection).
As of the 2016 results, the total dollars raised by all the Balls to date is over $10,000,000. In total, the Ladies’ Auxiliary has had over 600 candidates with the first year hosting only seven candidates. With the growth of the city and the addition of more high schools, the number of candidates selected has also increased. The event now sells out consistently with 1,100-1,300 attendees at $95 per person. The average donation continues to be about $25 with more and more of the community supporting the candidates and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Arlington.
After the Ball, Miss Cinderella helps at events and functions of the Boys & Girls Clubs. When additional help is needed the candidates are called upon. Since these girls are already so involved in the community and their schools, no additional service is required of them once the event is over except for participating in the Arlington annual 4th of July Parade. It is hoped that these young women will continue on as active community leaders and lifetime advocates of all Boys & Girls Clubs.
Thank you for your support!