Hundreds of girls lined up outside Palacio Catering and Conference Center Sunday, October 15th for the Straus News’ Girls World Expo. It was the biggest yet Girls World event in the area, pulling more than 700 in attendance.

In between seminars such as “Questions You Can’t Ask Your Mom” and “13 Reasons Why Not,” girls and parents alike enjoyed interactive displays, performances, and giveaways from the event sponsors. Capri Cosmetology set up an on-site salon, styling the girls’ hair and makeup. Warwick Henna did henna throughout the day for event attendees, and Wine and Design had the girls painting mini murals. Attendees enjoyed two exciting performances from New York Dance Center and teens hopped on stage for dance fitness from a South Orange YMCA instructor.

The event was both entertaining and educational. Officer Thomas and Officer Lupinski of the Goshen Town Police set up sobriety tests with “drunk goggles” for teens and parents. Afterwards, participants signed a Safe Driving pledge from Nationwide Insurance Vogel and Moore. Friendly Acura of Middletown did a demonstration on car safety, complete with prizes for the girls who participated. Suburban Propane sponsored 10 non-profit tables, which were there offering volunteer opportunities for attendees.

Eleven local girls were honored with a Teen on the Rise award for volunteering efforts, helping others, ending bullying, innovation, and more. One recipient was Kasandra Catlett, who helped a Chester family escape a house fire. Another, Zoe Heath, was recognized for founding and growing Vernon Township High School’s Gay Straight Alliance.

Girls World, a national movement of one-day events for teenage girls, partners with Straus News (publisher of The Chronicle, The Photo News, The Warwick Advertiser, The Advertiser News North, The Advertiser News South, The Township Journal, The Pike County Courier, The West Milford Messenger, and The Sparta Independent) to host the Tri-State Girls World Expo every year. Thank you to all attendees and the sponsors who made this event such a success: Suburban Propane, Capri Cosmetology, Orange Dermatology Associates, Nationwide: Vogel and Moore, Friendly Acura of Middletown, Verizon Wireless Icon, Warwick Wine and Design, New York Dance Center, Excel Urgent Care, Palacio Catering and Conference Center, and Thor Labs. Many thanks to participating exhibitors: Amy Wohl, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Orange County, Dunkin Donuts, Lularoe, Mary Kay, North Jersey Cure Spinal Muscular Atrophy, Pets Alive, Project Linus, Safe Homes of Orange County, Sapphire Nursing Home, Team Redeem, United Martial Arts, Vernon Robotics, Warwick Henna, Windslow Therapeutic, and the YMCA.