NEW YORK–As a busy mom and public affairs officer in the Navy, Petty Officer 1st Class Bickiana Patton doesn’t have many opportunities to show off her feminine side. But thanks to the USO — and sponsors Sherri Hill, Ann Taylor and Ralph Lauren — Patton was able to let her hair down and enjoy an afternoon of fashion and pampering at USO Operation That’s My Dress at Fleet Week New York 2015.
“I have to admit, it was wonderful,” Patton said. “The USO helped me feel like a diva today.”
Now in it’s third year, USO Operation That’s My Dress, which normally caters to military teens attending formal events, has expanded to include events tailored towards female service members and military spouses.
“There are many, many sacrifices these women make to serve our country or to go with their husband,” said USO of Metropolitan New York Vice President of Programs Ray Kennedy. “And today is a way to make sure we know that we value them, we understand their femininity and we want to make them feel beautiful inside and outside.”
The afternoon of glitz and glam kicked off with a performance by the USO Show Troupe and a fashion show featuring professional models and the Miss USA and Miss Teen USA titleholders. After the show, attendees enjoyed hair and make-up demonstrations by professional stylists before heading upstairs to find the perfect dress. Spouses and female service members were event treated to free accessories by JTV jewelry to complete their look.
“My husband and I are transferring very soon, so just to be able to do this before we move … we just want to thank you,” said Coast Guard spouse Casey Van Huysen.