Little Princess Ball goes out with glitter and smiles

Lisa
Lisa Goudy
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Published on March 30, 2014

Little princesses wait for Cinderella to arrive at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball on March 29, 2014 at the Heritage Inn.

Published on March 30, 2014

Two princesses discuss royal matters at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball at the Heritage Inn on March 29, 2014.

Published on March 30, 2014

Cinderella is seen at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball at the Heritage Inn on March 29, 2014.

Published on March 30, 2014

Cinderella and Prince Charming share a dance at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball at the Heritage Inn on March 29, 2014.

Published on March 30, 2014

Cinderella interacts with some little princesses at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball on March 29, 2014 at the Heritage Inn.

Published on March 30, 2014

Cinderella's stepsisters lead in some little princesses to the sixth annual Little Princess Ball on March 29, 2014 at the Heritage Inn.

Published on March 30, 2014

Cinderella's stepmother and stepsisters make an appearance at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball at the Heritage Inn on March 29, 2014.

Published on March 30, 2014

Cinderella and Prince Charming dance together at the sixth annual Little Princess Ball at the Heritage Inn on March 29, 2014.

Published on March 30, 2014

Snow White watches over the little princesses as they await Cinderella's arrival to the sixth annual Little Princess Ball at the Heritage Inn on March 29, 2014.

Kelly McElree loves seeing smiles on little princess’ faces. For him, that’s one of the best parts about the Little Princess Ball.

“Every little girl deserves to feel like a princess and have that special time they can spend with their mom at this event and the odd dad. It’s great to see,” he said. “It’s the attention to detail that goes into this event, absolutely everywhere. That’s what really, really sets it apart.”

The sixth annual Little Princess Ball took place on Saturday at the Heritage Inn as a fundraiser for the Moose Jaw Health Foundation (MJHF). On Sunday night, there will be a second sitting. This is the first year there have been two dates.

Unless someone else takes over the reigns of planning the royal party, it was the last year for the ball.

“This is a much loved event in the community. Everyone loves it and just the spirit of the volunteers … who bring this all together and create a magical event for little girls and their parents,” said McElree, director of the MJHF. “At the end of the day everyone has such a fabulous day. They all leave full of sugar and smiles.”

Amy Olfstie, one of the event’s volunteer organizers, said it’s a lot of work to make the event happen.

“We love the girls and everything, but it’s time for someone else to do it,” she said. “I’m very excited that everyone’s having a good time.”

Both sittings sold out quickly this year. This year’s theme was Cinderella’s Year.

“We just tried to come up with the best ideas that we could and try to make it a really nice evening,” said Olfstie. “We always try to make it as good as we can make it.”

McElree said he hopes to see someone step forward to help the event continue.

“If we can find the right volunteer to step forward, the foundation of the event can continue. So it really touches a lot of people in the community,” he said. “It’s just the nature of Moose Jaw that we hope someone would step forward and help out.”

He added the fundraiser allows the foundation to buy a panda bed, which he described as a “piece of lifesaving equipment at our new hospital”

“It is a micro environment that the babies born with some challenges, they’ll go into a warm environment and all the tools for the doctors to use, including the lighting and everything, it’s all contained within the panda bed,” he said. “Let’s say a baby needed to be resuscitated, that’s built right into the panda bed.

“All the monitoring, all the vital signs, it’s all built right in there. It’s absolutely fantastic.”

He said with the panda bed, the babies wouldn’t need to be transported to Regina. It costs about $40,000.

The ball is so popular that McElree said people from across Canada call him to ask questions.

“They say, ‘How do you do it? How is it possible?’ and I say, ‘Believe me I don’t do it. I work with the absolute best volunteers,’” he said. “It’s just a magical evening for everyone. It’s a lovely event. I love the smiles on the faces of the little girls all the way throughout.”

Follow Lisa Goudy on Twitter @lisagoudy.

Organizations: Moose Jaw Health Foundation, Heritage Inn

Geographic location: Moose Jaw, Regina, Canada

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