Make-A-Wish sends Nova Scotia family to Disney
Father of five-year-old Briella Ptolemy says his daughter loves princesses
The former Payless ShoeSource store at the Halifax Shopping Centre was transformed on Sunday into a palace for a five-year-old girl who learned the Make-A-Wish Foundation would be sending her and her Valley, N.S., family to Walt Disney World.
Briella Ptolemy — along with her nine-year-old sister Chloe, eight-year-old sister Emily and three-year-old brother Joshua — were provided with princess and dragon costumes.
When Tinkerbell showed up, the party really got started. The siblings learned some new dance moves, got their faces painted and ate cupcakes.
For Allan Ptolemy, it was nice to see his daughter Briella enjoying herself. He said Briella has a brain tumour and neurofibromatosis Type 1 — a genetic disorder that causes tumours to form on nerve tissue.
"She loves princesses, loves Disney stuff, Cinderella — anything that's Disney is absolutely a love of hers," Ptolemy said.
"It's been pretty amazing, she's just absorbing all the interaction with Tinkerbell and everyone who is here and just loving the moment."
Ahead of the big reveal, Ptolemy said her older siblings were catching on to the surprise.
Tinkerbell shared the news with the children they were going to Walt Disney World.
"My friends at Disney World, they really want to meet you," she said. "So I think they sent a little bit of pixie dust your way and you're going to go meet my friend Cinderella at Disney World."
Everyone in the family, including Briella's parents, got suitcases.
Steven Butler, the wish-granting manager with Make-A-Wish Atlantic Provinces, said the trip to Florida is seven nights and eight days.
"During her time there, she is going to meet all the princesses she can — from Elsa and Anna to Moana, so she'll really get the full princess treatment while she's down there and she'll really enjoy herself," Butler said.
Butler said any parent of a children ages three to 18 with a critical illness can refer their child for a wish.