The Iconic "Sweetheart" Gown

2017 Sweetheart of Sam Steele, Abbey McWhirter and 2017 Princess of Sam Steele, Jazmine Beaulac could not contain their excitement when they saw the 2018 Candidates dressed up and ready for their official introduction!

The Sam Steele Sweethearts are easily recognized by their heritage style dresses. The program has earned a reputation for having stunning, one of a kind dresses across BC and the northern states of the USA. Wherever the girls go, everyone knows where they came from. It is a tradition and a symbol of our community.

But where do these beautiful gowns come from?

Each year, kicking of the Sweetheart Program, Kathleen Melenka provides the candidates with an in depth session on Heritage Dresses. She discusses the trends and changes throughout the 1800's up until around the 1920's.

Each girl is then tasked with designing their own "Sweetheart Ball Gown" incorporating their favorite elements from the history lesson. The gowns are then created by local, talented mothers, grandmothers and seamstresses.

The girls keep their design and fabrics a secret right up until the ball in April when they are officially introduced.

The outcome is a stunning one of a kind dress for each girl that has ever been in the program. The gowns complement each girl's unique style and personality.

2018 Gowns and Candidates


Sponsoring Organizations

A huge thank you to each of our sponsoring organizations for embracing the girls and welcoming them to your inner circles. The experiences and opportunities that each organization provides these young women is incredibly valuable. Thank you for inviting them to your meetings, giving them opportunities to speak in public and practise the many skills that we work hard to teach them each week!

See them next:

We are so proud of each one of these young ladies in their accomplishments in the first 4 months of the program. They have two more busy months ahead full of events, volunteering and training sessions, and we cannot wait to see them shine on the stage at the Key City Theatre in June. Tickets are on sale, so make sure to get yours before they sell out!