The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

November 12, 2012

Would-be brides swarm shop for free gowns for vets

By Francis Scarcella
The Daily Item

— MILLERSBURG - Brides were crammed into every corner of Special Moments Bridal Boutique in Millersburg Monday morning, each anxiously examining their reflection in a mirror.

The shop was literally giving away dresses, to the first 100 active-duty military members and veterans or their spouse-to-be.

That was great news to Heather Reichard, of Etters, York County, whose fiancé served four years in the Army before returning to school.

"For my special day I wanted it to be beautiful, but at a low-budget cost,"

she said. "He's in school, so we're on a fixed income, basically."

Reichard was so excited about the dress giveaway, she woke up at 1:45 a.m.

to get ready for the day, arriving at the shop at 4:30 a.m.

"We brought lawn chairs to sit out there," she said.

Wanda Latshaw, owner of Special Moments heard about another shop giving away overstock dresses to veterans and thought it would be a good idea to clear space. The brides had 245 dresses in a wide variety of sizes, styles and colors to choose from.

The dresses ranged from $300 to $1,000 in value, Latshaw said.