by Rachel Whiteside @Ray_in_Nirvana
The Heals for a Cause fashion show featured a variety of designers and championship pow wow dancers.
Models, catwalks, dancing and donations were all a part of the vibrant an energetic fundraiser Heels for a Cause. Local clothing and shoe designers took part in Haskell University’s fashion show on Friday, April 10th to help raise money and food for organizations such as “Just Food” and the Lawrence Humane Society.
Raising food and money for “Just Food” and the Lawrence Humane Society was the major point of the fashion show. “Just Food,” an organization created in Douglas County has one main goal: “to improve the health and well-being of people by providing access to nutritious food and collaborating with community partners on programs that empower self-sufficiency.” They want to end hunger in Lawrence Kansas. With their business partners “Just Food” feeds more than 8,000 people per month in Douglas County. The Lawrence Humane Society helps more than 3,500 animals every year. Their mission is to provide shelter, care and advocacy to stray, homeless, and abused animals; and nurture the human-animal bond.
There were many people involved with getting the fashion ready for Friday Night. 3rd year coordinator Brittany Hall commented, “I got asked to do the show in 2012 and had kept doing it since. It takes about a year to prepare and a lot of branching out, making connections to bring in all the genres of styles the designers created.” Clothing brands such as; Silent Truth, Warrior Clothing, New Moon Clothing, plus Elite Trends and many more showcased their latest trends and fashions that continuously captured the audience’s attention. “These last two weeks have been really stressful. There will always be people that fall through with commitments or we either lose models and designers. But I would definitely do the fashion show again next year because it helps promote local designers and it’s for a great cause.” said Hall.
Championship Powwow dancers participated in the event and during intermission they preformed their tribal dances, giving the audience a great experience of what Native culture is. Manny King even gave the audience a few good laughs as the announcer for the dances. Haskell students; cheered, applauded, howled and praised as the men and women championship dancers performed.
The students at Haskell were a huge boast to the fashion show and a few of them even got to be a part of the show as models and work the runway. Haskell student Alaina Butler who participated as one of the models in Heels for a Cause said “Tonight was very overwhelming, “I learned a lot about self-confidence and that it was cool to be different, not many natives are modeling and I really enjoyed taking part in the show. It inspired me to eventually start my own modeling business. People just have to remember that it’s all for show and it is what’s on the inside that matters than what goes on the outside.”
Even the males that participated as models had their own encounter to talk about. “This was my second time doing the fashion show at Haskell so my experience was a lot less nerve wracking,” stated Haskell senior Hunter Collins. During the show many of the models were whistled and cheered at by the audience, especially when the men were topless. When asked about modeling shirtless Hunter Collins explained, “it was awkward during rehearsals, but you just have to learn how to shut out the noise and feel confident about yourself and get over your fears.”
Haskell University’s fashion show Heels for a Cause was a great success Friday night, it had; performances from champion Powwow dancers, narratives from the hilarious Manny King, dazzling models and their amazing products from local designers, as well as very informative videos of “Just Food” and the Lawrence Humane Society. All of the hard work put into it by coordinator Brittany Hall and Haskell students paid off. The audience was very enthusiastic throughout the whole event and donations for the fundraiser will be for a great cause helping the local organizations in Lawrence.