The COPAC facility in Plaquemine was jumpin’ Saturday night with a roomful of people dressed in the styles of clothing popular in the 1950s.
Organized by members of the City of Plaquemine’s and We Are the Difference’s teams, proceeds from the dinner and dance will be donated to the Iberville Parish Relay For Life on Apr. 7. The American Cancer Society ultimately ends up with the monies in its effort to find a cure for cancer.
The theme this year was chosen by Mary Walls, Police Chief Kenny Payne’s executive assistant, with the approval of the organizations behind the events.
“I’ve always liked the movie ‘Grease’ and the ‘50s era, so I guess that’s where the idea came from,” Walls said.
“Mary’s been with this since the beginning,” Fire Chief Darren Ramirez said. “It’s been Mary’s job for the past two years to put this event together.”
Walls said she and the rest of the committee – Rhonda Harrell, Rosemary Brocksmith, Tommy Pitre, Neila Heck, Tiffany Heck, Curtis Taber and Hiram Taber – began organizing the sold-out dinner/dance at the end of January. About 200 were in attendance, about half in period attire.
“We’re not forcing people to be in costume,” Walls said. “It’s just a suggestion but the more people in costume the more fun it will be.”
The winner of the costume contest was Clerk of Court Amy Patin and the winner of the People’s Choice Award, based on the tips received from their table, was Monty Migliacio.
This year’s Relay for Life will be different than in past years.
“It’s going to have a carnival them,” Walls said. “We’re trying and each team to have a game of some sort so more people will participate.”
Another change is from Friday to Saturday in an effort to increase attendance. The event will begin at 4 p.m. and continue as long as people are enjoying themselves.”
“And usually each team will have some kind of food and with others going with the carnival theme, we should draw a good crowd this year,” Walls said.
The City of Plaquemine’s Relay for Life team has already decided on its game, a dunking booth.
“We’re going to challenge to all the elected officials in Iberville Parish to come out and sit in the dunking booth and see which one of those elected officials can make the most money,” Ramirez said.
“The chief of police, the mayor (Ed Reeves) and I raised a phenomenal amount of money last year,” he continued. “If one them think they can top that, tell them to come on and bring their best bathing suit.”
“We’re really promoting a family atmosphere so that people can have fun and give them something to do with their children on a Saturday night,” Ramirez said. “So we’re going to have activities for the adults and the children to do and come out and support a good cause.”
“We’re excited about it and we’re going to have fun,” Walls said.
“With the proceeds ending up with the American Cancer Society, it will go to a cause that everyone has been affected by,” Ramirez continued. “Everybody has been touched by somebody.”
“You never know who it’s going to touch next,” Walls said.
She thanked everyone who contributed to the event, which she said was “very successful.”