Monday marked the 11th time Central Michigan University music instructor Mark Cox got on the dance floor to shimmy to the Macarena with his 13-year-old daughter, Sarah Cox.
More importantly, it was the second time Sarah and her father attended the Daddy-Daughter Date Night since she recovered from cancer in early January 2013. She was diagnosed in 2010 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
“Just thinking about how my daughter is still here with me after going through all of that; you can’t put it into words,” Mark Cox said. “Life can be short, so you have to enjoy every minute of it.”
The Daddy-Daughter Date Nights gave fathers and daughters an opportunity to dance, eat, get their pictures taken, play games and have a memorable night out together. Organized by Mound Pleasant’s Parks and Recreation Department, the events were hosted Sunday and Monday at Mount Pleasant’s Comfort Inn & Suites.
“She’s now a teenager, so I thought she’d be tired of these things, but it’s still her favorite event,” Cox said. “Before, I got to hold her in my arms, and now she’s almost my height.”
As guests entered the Comfort Inn sporting suits and dresses, many fathers bought their daughters corsages and flowers that were available at the sign-in desk.
Once they entered the Conference Room, the father-daughter pairs were greeted with a wide range of music including Nat King Cole’s “L-O-V-E” and Justin Bieber’s “Baby.”
While some stopped to take their seats and eat, others quickly took to the dance floor, which was covered in colorful, moving lights.
Mount Pleasant resident Robert Buzanowski and his daughter Elliaunna enjoyed a few Rice Krispies Treats before they excitedly hit the dance floor.
“I love being here with my girl, and she is planning on dancing all night long,” Robert Buzanowski said. “I actually DJ at home, so my daughter and I are used to wildly dancing to loud music.”
In the corner of the Conference Room, attendees had the option of getting their professional photographs taken, courtesy of Fisher Photography. Recreation Coordinator Carol Moody worked to decorate the Conference Room right up until the 7 p.m. start time on Monday.
“This is our 30th year, and it continues to be a great opportunity for dads and daughters to spend time together,” Moody said. “It’s wonderful because everyone from young children, to teenagers, and even college students show up with their dads.”