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Creating memories one dress at a time

Article and photo by Catalin Varela

The new year brings new beginnings in all areas of life, including the closet. We all have that corner of the closet we have not touched in a while; that corner that we swear every year we are going to either fit into or get rid of. This year, why not share the gift of your clothing with others who will put it to good use? It is no secret that unneeded clothing can be donated to nonprofits such as The Salvation Army, Goodwill, Help & Hope Center and Arc Thrift Stores.

A lesser known but equally important nonprofit, ParkerSecret Closet, accepts new and almost-new formal dresses, tuxedos, sports coats, ties, graduation gowns and accessories and provides them, free of charge, to any student who has an important event they would like to attend. ParkerSecret Closet is “Helping to create memories, one dress at a time.”

Director Kiva Frey said she acquired a significant number of formal dresses after the closing of a small boutique and saw a huge need when a teen who would not have otherwise attended prom reached out to her for a dress. While storing all of the dresses in her basement, Frey welcomed high school students to come and take a look before their formal events. But ultimately, Frey knew the setup was only temporary, and it was this that inspired her to start the nonprofit. ParkerSecret Closet is currently housed in BlueMountain Self Storage, located at 10255 Dransfeldt Place in Parker.

Teens can make an appointment with ParkerSecret Closet and be fitted for a dress or suit for their formal event. This nonprofit is changing the game for teens, but can only continue to make a positive impact with the help of your donations. The nonprofit requests that donated dresses be less than five years old. According to Frey, “If you wouldn’t wear it tomorrow, don’t donate it today.” ParkerSecret Closet accepts new or nearly-new formal gowns and accessories in excellent condition.

Instead of those items collecting dust in the closet, it would be incredibly heart-warming to know that your formal items were going on to create new, lasting memories. To date, ParkerSecret Closet has helped more than 1,000 teens create magical lasting memories. As we start a new year, please consider helping to build memories for teens in our community.

For more information on how and where to donate, volunteering opportunities and appointment times, visit

Have fun pictures of you and your date in your prom attire? We’d love for you to share them with us on Facebook and Instagram with the handle @CastlePinesConnection.



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