WASHINGTON — It was last September that Oksana Komarnyckyj started planning her daughter Katya’s Ukrainian debutante ball.
“It’s a fun coming-out party, just like you have the quinceañera, the bat mitzvahs, the turban ceremonies,” Komarnyckyj explained.
The family from Phoenix, Arizona, had already purchased plane tickets and a dress for Katya, but then, as the big day neared, out came a forecast calling for a lot of snow.
The news didn’t stop the family from packing their bags in sunny Phoenix and hopping a plane to the nation’s capital.
“Hell no; we’re still going to have a party,” Komarnyckyj said.
On Saturday night, the storm raged outside the Marriott Wardman Park in Northwest D.C., but inside, the family donned their formal attire for the ball and gathered at a lounge near the lobby.
Komarnyckyj called for the attention of the room, which included a group of snow-trapped WTOP reporters, and introduced her daughter and her escort, Roman Onyshkevych, 17, of Annapolis, Maryland.
“The blizzard really — it just kind of made everything more exciting,” Onyshkevych said.
After they sipped sparkling cider inside, the group then made a run outside to snap pictures of a memorable event during a historic snowstorm.