omestead’s fourth annual district wide Buddy Ball was held on Friday, May 3rd in the field house. Students from multiple schools in our area attended for a night of games and music.
The event was hosted by TDAU club with the goal of providing an inclusive environment for students of all mental and physical abilities.
“This event is just for anyone who wants to come and have a night of fun and games with their friends and family,” Club Advisor and English teacher Surna Barton said.
The Buddy Ball had stations set up with activities such as slime-making, ring tossing and foosball, along with a photo booth to capture images from the evening.
For Senior Anisha Chandra, co-vice president of TDAU, she wants to expand the good nature of Buddy Ball outside the event. “I’ve been interacting with fellow students with special needs since middle school. Our community could be so much more united once we escape stigma and stereotypes. I’ve met so many incredible individuals at each Buddy Ball and it’s truly like no other dance.”
The buddy ball has different themes each year, which add to the nature and growth of the event.
“Each dance has had a different theme – Valentine’s Day in 2016, Hollywood in 2017, Disney/Pixar in 2018, and Superheroes this past year,” Chandra said.
This year was the first time Buddy Ball included live music from The Dream Achievers, a group of special needs students singing, playing guitar, saxophone and piano. The Dream Achievers led the dance with hit pop songs such as Despacito.
For senior Reet Mishra, the other co-president of TDAU, helping to put on the Buddy Ball has been a highlight for her over the past four years.
“I find this event to be one of my favorite events each year. I get to make many new friends and listen to incredibly interesting stories,” said Mishra.