Sleeping Beauty sends her regards. Cinderella, Snow White and many of the Disney princesses will round up their pirate and superhero friends on Saturday morning for a special breakfast at Royal Oaks Events Facility. Blount children are invited to come to breakfast. The food will be good, but the company will be…magical.
The second annual Princesses, Pirates and Pals breakfast will feature Junior Service League members and many of their spouses dressed up as a variety of characters from Walt Disney movies, Saturday morning cartoons and comic books.
“It’s such a magical day for the kids who attend and also for the parents and people who bring them,” JSL major fundraising co-chair Becky Rials said. “To see the expressions on the children’s faces when they see all these characters is priceless.”
JSL president Whitney Cox said the service league members are enthusiastic about the event because the children enjoy seeing the adults dressed up as characters. “It’s just magical. It is like we are truly those characters. Kids walk in and see us, and they are just amazed and in awe,” Cox said. “It was really fun. We’re all pumped up and want to make it as fantastic as last year.”
While event promises to be a fun time for children and their parents, the idea behind the breakfast is serious enough - providing Christmas presents for less fortunate children, Rials said.
“It’s one of our fundraisers for the year to support Toys for Blount County which provides toys for underprivileged children ages birth to 14 at Christmas,” she said.
In addition to JSL members and many of their spouses, Maryville High School students also will dress up to entertain the crowds, which last year packed both the 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. seatings.
“They will mingle through the crowds while the people are eating,” she said. “Kids can come dressed up, too.”
The 2008 event sold out. Rails said there are only about 58 tickets left for this year’s event. Tickets are $12 and can be purchased from JSL members or the morning of the event.
Cox said members are hoping this event along with the Breakfast with Santa will bring in enough money to support their Toys for Blount County project.
“We are trying to make this consistent so people know every year at this time of year, it’s time for Princesses, Pirates and Pals,” she said.
A special treat this year comes in the form of a donation from a true Disney princess. Mary Costa of Knoxville is the voice of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. She was a young, 22-year-old singer in 1952 when she stood behind a screen to sing and was picked by Walt Disney to be the voice of Aurora.
Costa went on to world-acclaim as an opera star and had a long, fruitful career on stage, appearing with the New York Metropolitan Opera, London’s Royal Opera and the San Francisco Opera. At the request of Jacqueline Kennedy, she sang at the memorial service for President John F. Kennedy.
When time came to retire, Mary came home to Knoxville, where she helps promote Disney events and is involved in various charitable activities.
Mary was unable to attend the breakfast due to a previous commitment, but has sent a signed Sleeping Beauty DVD, a framed and signed Sleeping Beauty print and a fabulous musical Sleeping Beauty snow globe for JSL to either auction or raffle at the breakfast.
Photographer Wendy Tittsworth will be on hand to take pictures of children with characters for $5 each. Trinkets also will be on sale. “It’s more than just a pancake breakfast. There will be egg casserole, fruit, bacon, sausage, fruit and hash browns,” Rials said.
Rials is co-chair of major fundraising for JSL with Christy Alexander and Elizabeth Dugger.
Cox said JSL members are hoping to raise between $6,000 and $7,000. “Our Santa breakfast was a huge success and raised close to $10,000. Last year’s Princesses, Pirates and Pals raised right around $8,000 or $9,000,” Cox said. “We know with the economy, people aren’t as free with their money. The fact people are coming back, we feel honored they would choose to spend their Saturday morning with a bunch of crazy ladies.”
Crazy or not, it’s sure to be a magical morning.