MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Morgantown Dance Studio, a nonprofit, hosted its 12th annual Prince and Princess Party fundraiser at the Mountaineer Mall on Saturday.
Families were charged entrance fees for the opportunity to take pictures, get autographs, make crafts and receive a free dance class. There were 16 stations, filled with 16 main characters dressed as Disney princesses and princes who were mostly played by dancers from the studio. There were also an additional six or so side characters who dressed as dwarves.
Riley Thompson, a dancer, was one of the main characters, she wore an ornate costume, signed autographs and took pictures during the three-hour event. She was dressed as Elana of Avalor, a Disney princess.
“I think that a lot of the little kids find it exciting because someone that they’ve seen on tv is here and that they can talk to them,” Thompson said.
The main and side characters weren’t the only ones dressed in costume, many of the children attending wore their own costumes to show their love of their favorite characters.
Sherri Thompson, a volunteer with the studio, who helps coordinate the costumes said the event was attended by roughly 200 families, totaling in about 600 people. She added that she was thankful for the support the community had shown.
Thompson said the event was not only inspirational to the young kids attending but also to young dancers.
“I think it’s a great event because we have a lot of our smaller dancers here,” Thompson said. “Dancers start here at the age of two, they kind of see Riley here –Riley is an assistant teacher also–she kind of moved her way up, she was a dwarf one here, she moved up to a major character. It’s something that our younger dancers look up to and hope one day that they can be the next Elena.”