DeKalb County

Senior living residents need new duds for formal dance

DECATUR, Ga. — Since they were teenagers, Sharon Phillips and her friends Lewis Thorp and Frank Gates have always loved going to the dance.

“You know, putting on your party dress and party shoes,” Phillips said.

“Like when we’re in high school and there was a prom,” Thorp said.

For the first time in three years, The Regency House — where they live in Decatur — is planning its Senior Ball.

The last two parties had to be cancelled because of COVID-19. But for folks on fixed incomes, new dresses and suits are out of the question.

“Well, there’s always Goodwill,” Phillips said.

Regency House managers Jeremiah Cofer and Vicki Logan aim to help.

“Coming here every day is like I’m coming home to family,” Logan said.

And she wants her family — there are 92 residents here — to look their very best.

They’ve asked friends of the facility to donate gently used gowns and sport jackets. They also set up a GoFundMe page so they can purchase new formalwear.


Gates already has a suit. And a crown.

“That’s for being king. The king of the ball,” Gates said.

From three years ago. He says he’ll never part with it.

“Can you dance, Frank?” Channel 2′s Berndt Petersen asked Gates.

“No!” Gates answered with a chuckle.

But that’s OK with Phillips. It’s been a long time since the last dance.

She’s just happy it’s back on.

“I think it’s lovely. Really, really nice. Something to look forward to,” Phillips said.

If you’d like to donate a dress or suit, you can call Regency House General Manager Jeremiah Cofer at 404-991-4395.

You can also donate on their GoFundMe page.