By Tamas Mondovics

Hillsborough County senior residents 50 and older had a chance to revisit the thrill of senior prom last month organized by Hillsborough County’s Aging Services. The call to gather and enjoy the timeless magic of senior prom went out and effectively drew hundreds of residents, from around the county to relive the memories as well as make new ones.

The free event, which was held at The Regent in Riverview, featured music and dancing, food, drinks, and door prizes. This year’s theme was “Bollywood Comes to Life.”

“We are very pleased with the venue, and our senior residents were having a blast,” said Todd Pratt with Hillsborough County Communications.

Pratt emphasized that Senior Prom aims to replicate the look, music, and emotional feel of an event that was the highlight of many a teenager’s life, though, this one was only for those 50 and over.

According to Aging Services General Manager Frances Brea, the agency has been organizing Senior Prom for more than 20 years with great success.

“Some of the active older adults can compete with the best of them on the dance floor,” she said.

Each year, a highlight of the prom is the crowning of a king and queen. This year, the honor of Senior Prom King went to Herman Sharpe, 84, while Linda Leone became this Senior Prom Queen.

Last year’s event drew national attention after 89-year-old Ralph Wozniak, who missed the prom in his teenage years because of World War II, who was crowned Senior Prom King. He handed off the crown this year to a new, deserving senior.

The County’s Sunshine Line transported the large crowd or residents to and from the event.

Hillsborough County Aging Services offers a variety of fun activities for adults age 50 and over. Visit to view activity calendars and additional center information, or call Aging Services at 272-5250. For more information, visit

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