Switching things up for annual NAACP fashion show

Planning has begun for the NAACP’s second annual fashion show following last year’s multicultural show. 

And this year, they’ve decided to make the theme “dress for the occasion” because, according to NAACP chapter president Kayon Morgan, “we want it to be a little bit more open to the Castleton community and basically encourage more participation.”

What does dress for the occasion mean? 

In this case, there are multiple categories including streetwear, formal wear, decades, cyber punk and multicultural. 

“We started off with a multicultural fashion show, because culture is a big part of a lot of Castleton students’ lives. We have such a great international population, and so that’s one of the reasons why we decided to maintain the multicultural category this year,” Morgan said. 

Chapter secretary Shanice Williams added to this sentiment. 

“We just wanted people to know that we we’re here, and we welcome everyone and we’re willing to interact with everyone. So, we basically were trying to meet them halfway and open it to everyone, but only the international students and students that are from different cultures actually participated,” Williams said. “This year around, we wanted to change that. So, we changed the theme and everything to just make it seem more inclusive.” 

Inclusivity is important to the group, and the categories contribute to that goal in more than one way. According to Morgan, they wanted students to be able to “pull from their closet” or potentially DIY their outfits if they volunteer to model. 

“We really wanted to pick categories that were easy for college students. We didn’t want anybody having to go out and having to buy anything or spend excessive money as we’re all college students,” Morgan said. 

Williams also added that, while models have creative freedom over their outfits, the group will do their best to provide financial assistance if there are specific items that someone wants but can’t purchase themselves. 

Modeling is open to anyone at Castleton – including two faculty members who have expressed interest in being a part of the event. The group is holding an open casting call on March 24 for anyone interested. 

And for those who might be hesitant about modeling, junior Nathaniel Ray Dito, who participated last year, said that he and his friends – many of whom were international students – essentially “peer pressured each other” into participating by saying, “I’ll do it if you do it.” 

And, he said, it was worth it. 

“It was really nice – us working with one another to just figure it out,” Dito said. “All the people that I did the show with, we all say hi to each other. Just because we did this event together, we’re able to have that connection.” 

When asked if he’s going to participate in the fashion show this year, Dito said he was “thinking about it.”

But if modeling isn’t your thing, there are other opportunities to be involved. Morgan said they are also looking for people to volunteer to help backstage and with set-up, and they’re even looking for an emcee. 

“If people do not want to walk and they just want to offer help, we’re more than open to that type of support as well. But we really would love for people to just come and enjoy the show,” Morgan said. 

Overall, the group is just seeking support from the Castleton community. 

“We’re encouraging everyone to just make use of the opportunity just to be a part of this and show us some support,” Williams said. “We want to interact with everyone. We want to see our club grow even further.”

Beyond being a fundraising event to raise money for NAACP events and to support the group, Morgan also views this fashion show as an opportunity for the community to gain “insight into who we are as a club, as an organization, and what it means to have our presence on this campus.”

The show will take place on Saturday, April 22 and tickets are $5 for students and $10 for faculty, staff and community members.

“I’m really hoping this fashion show is just a great way to bring the community together. Our fashion show last year was a really big hit. And we’re really hoping to just foster the same support and really build on it,” Morgan said. 

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