Classmates, family, and supporters came out to the Marie Bleu Ballroom in Carencro, LA for a special prom in honor of Amari Williams.
(L to R) Troyetta Williams, Amari Williams, and Corey Davis
Williams was the High School student who went viral earlier this year when Black Boot News released a story about the student being denied the opportunity to attend her High School Prom. Amari wore an African dress that was deemed ‘inappropriate’ by the principal at Carencro High School.
As the word spread around social media, syndicated radio and television shows picked the story up and millions were shocked that an honor student would be rejected from a prom because of the kind of dress she wore. Amari’s dress was custom made with authentic African cloth. The dress covered all of the private areas of her body which complied with the school’s prom policy. However, the kind of dress she wore trained the ground on the left side but the right side of the dress stopped just short of her ankle. The principal said her dress ‘breached school prom policy’. Even though Amari was denied the prom, she opened a national conversation about understanding and respecting the dress code within various different cultures. “What is formal in one culture may not be considered formal in another culture,” said Amari.
On June 25, hundreds gathered to attend a prom with a complete African theme. In many ways, Amari’s prom was similar to the Royal Wedding in Eddie Murphy’s hit movie, Coming To America. She and her date arrived in style. A stretch limo brought them to the venue, where a royal court awaited their arrival. Cheers and claps could be heard blocks away as the supporters welcomed the prom Queen and King.
Once the event began, a group of young ladies threw rose petals at their feet. They were entertained by African dancers and musicians. The food included mostly cultural inspired dishes. Svonnie Trailer coordinated the event because she felt the young lady deserved a prom memory that would last her a lifetime.
Troynetta Williams, Amari’s mother, said “People have no idea how happy we were to see them all come out… not only to support Amari but to also enjoy an event that was inspired by our own culture,” she said.
Her prom date was Corey Davis, a graduate of Lafayette High School in Lafayette, LA. Davis asked Amari to be her date because he was inspired by her bravery and ‘black girl magic’. Davis will be attending the University of Houston this fall but would not leave for college without escorting her to her prom.
When Black Boot first ran the story, Amari told us she had never been able to attend the Essence Music Festival. “It is one of my dreams to go to Essence Music Fest in New Orleans. I love the music, the kind of artists they bring are very eclectic and soulful. We don’t get these kind of events where I live. I have never been but it would be a dream come true,” she said.
Black Boot partnered up with Louisiana Radio Stations: 100 BLK in New Orleans, Magic 97 in Monroe, and Z105 in Lafayette to make one of Amari’s dreams come true. She and her mom were presented with complimentary tickets to this year’s Essence Music Festival.
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