Silly Sock Saturdays Hops Back to 50s with 5th Annual Fundraiser Sock Hop
by James Coulter
The weekend may have risen to the 90s, but in Winter Haven, everything went back to the 50s–the 1950s!—during the 5th Annual Fundraiser Sock Hop.
Guys put on their black leather jackets and blue suede shoes while gals put on their poodle skirts for a classic 1950s-style sock hop at Venue 650.
Attendees were able to enjoy a dinner of hot dogs, burgers, and chicken prepared by Cam’s Catering Company, Inc. and music performed by DJ MINi C Productions.
They could also take sips of vintage root beer floats, snag some candy from the candy bar, place bets on various prizes in a silent auction, and take some silly selfies at the photo booth.
Proceeds for the event went toward Silly Sock Saturdays, a local non-profit organization that delivers donations of toiletries, toys, and other gifts to children at Lakeland Regional Hospital.
Silly Sock Saturday was originally started by Zachary Kirkland as a high school project. Five years later, it has evolved into an award-winning 501c3 non-profit. Even in college, Zachary still finds time to come home and make his monthly deliveries.
For the past five years, Zack has hosted the annual fundraiser to help raise proceeds for his organization. What originally started as a bowling tournament at Cypress Lanes evolved into a Sock Hop last year. Since then, Zack had kept the format, as it better allows participants to participate with each other.
“I feel like with the sock hop, we can get more of the community together, being able to have everybody together rather than separate in their own lanes like it was with bowling,” he explained. “So being able to see everybody together, people who never met before dancing with each other, it has been such a wonderful time and that is why we have kept going with this.”
His mother, Dianne Forcier, loves hosting the annual event and helping her son with his endeavors through Silly Sock Saturdays. She was especially impressed by this year’s turnout, and she continues to remain impressed by her son’s commitment to his cause even in college.
“Zack is doing good,” she said. “He still comes home and makes his deliveries every month and does everything he needs to do. He still takes the time and has the ability to keep going by touching so many different people. We just hope to keep going. [We hope to] have another [fundraiser] next year. Everyone else is already talking about it.”
Zack and his mom have high expectations for next year’s event. He has even higher expectations for Silly Sock Saturdays, and he hopes he will be able to reach out to more children through his organization. Being able to participate in the annual fundraiser allows him to see so many people who are willing to help him with his cause.
“This has been an amazing event, being able to piggyback off the success we had last year, being able to have a great community together, being able to see and have fun with a community that has given me so much, and being able to give back to them and see how the entire community can come together,” he said. “It is a great feeling, and I am grateful to be able to do this with them.”
To learn more about Silly Sock Saturdays, visit their website at: https://sillysocksaturdays.com/