BRISTOL – Girls of all ages know exactly where to flock to for a proper princess tea.
Mothers, grandmothers and lots of little girls met at the New England Carousel Museum Sunday to celebrate everything princess. It was one of five princess parties the Riverside Avenue landmark is hosting this year and it sold out months ago.
“This is amazing; we love coming here,” East Hartford resident Kim Starky said as her 3-year-old daughter, Khloe, posed for a photograph with The Little Mermaid’s “Ariel” – the day’s guest of honor.
Many of the 2- to 10-year-old visitors arrived dressed in costume to match the “Under the Sea” theme or the dress of their favorite princess. They enjoyed cupcakes and tea, had their faces painted, hands tattooed, crafted mermaid ornaments and rode the carousel. They also waited in line to meet Ariel, dressed in full mermaid attire with the signature red curls and crown.
“It’s just a fun experience for the kids,” Gales Ferry resident Katy Slavin said.
Four-year-old Addison Slavin meets all the princesses. She and her mom are regular museum visitors.
“We’re building a gallery in her bedroom at home, with photographs of her with all the princesses we’ve met,” Katy Slavin said.
Coming up Sunday, Sept. 29 there will be a Cinderella Ball to attend. Then on Sunday, Dec. 8 – a chance to meet Elsa at a Snow Ball.
“These princess teas have been really great for us,” Executive Director Morgan Urgo said. “They bring in a lot of people from out of town to our museum.”
Each party features either a classic princess like Snow White, or a newer one, like Moana.
The princess party schedule for 2020 has already been created. Attendance for each event is limited to 75 children, along with their accompanying adults. That way the lines for various activities aren’t long and everyone has their chance with the princess.
“It’s nice to give each of the kids individual attention,” Urgo said.
Local royalty may also partake in these occasions. Sunday, Miss Mum City Teen 2019 Maggie Wernicki greeted visitors right across the ballroom from Ariel.
The 13-year-old pageant winner is a student at John F. Kennedy Middle School.
“I absolutely love these events at the carousel museum,” Wernicki said. “It’s so much fun seeing the kids with the princesses. It’s totally amazing.”
The museum also manages the Bushnell Park Carousel, where five separate princess parties take place in 2019.
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at 860-801-5097 or firstname.lastname@example.org.