HughE Dillon: Please Touch Museum’s Storybook Ball

Princesses, pirates, fairies and more played all night.

Saturday night at the Please Touch Museum, everyone got to live out their childhood fantasies, and guests turned into pirates, princesses, fairies and even pigs at the annual Storybook Ball. Children and their grown-ups were encouraged to dress as their favorite storybook characters for an evening that included turns on the carousel, horse-drawn carriage rides, and family-friendly cuisine like chicken fingers. Can we bottle up adorableness? These three princesses, cousins and BFFs Elayna Fanelli, Skylar Ross and Mia Jackson, had a lot of fun organizing the Snow White clothesline in the sandbox play area. Love the heart tattoos!

Below: Jennifer and Rich Raker and their children, Emily and Alex, take a carriage ride.

Below: Sally W. Stetson, chairperson, co-founder and principal of Salveson Stetson Group, is also board chair at the Please Touch Museum. She’s here with Lee Stetson, president at Stetson College Advisory.

Below: Coretta Wright, Aubree Wright, Autumn Wright, Tyler Taylor, Alan Taylor and Cha Donna Taylor were almost all having a fantastic time. (Mom Coretta told me that Aubree wanted to ride the merry-go-round again, but the family was moving on to the next exciting thing happening that night. I couldn’t get Aubree to smile at all, but I love this photo.)

Below: No doubt, anyone who ran into Wordsworth the Bookworm and his friend Alice would have a big smile on his face. I was so enthralled that I accidentally ignored Alice during a two-minute conversation with the intriguing Wordsworth. Also spotted that night: acclaimed children’s book author and illustrator Peter H. Reynolds, and actors from the Renaissance Fair.

Below: Looking dapper in their dress, Rich and Cathy Fasy, with grandchildren, Emma and Ava Pilson.

Below: Robin Frames helps out daughter/princess Madison Baker check out items at the play supermarket, as Jessica “Arielle” Falkowski waits her turn.

Below: Wizard Tom McDonnell performs spellbinding magic for little Max Capello and his sister Ryan Capello. (Personal note here: Tom sold me my first camera about 15 years ago when he worked at the Camera Store in the Gallery. Now he’s a full-time working wizard. It was great running into him.)

Below: Christopher Reintz, Topher Collier, and Sebastian Collier. All proceeds from the night benefited Please Touch Museum’s Play Without Boundaries program aimed at families with children with physical, intellectual, and sensory disabilities.

Below: Ashley and Danny Govberg, with Spencer Govberg, Marc and Nicole Rayfield, Samantha Diamond, Aliza Rayfiled, and Halle Adelman enjoying a family night out.

Below: The Dyckman family (Ame, Alaric and eight-year-old Kaia) tries to come to the ball every year. In the past, they’ve been the Shrek family, and Dorothy and her friends from Oz. This year, they were the Three Little Pigs.

Below: So adorable! I just love when people get into the spirit of the event, as not-looking-very-wicked queen Priscilla Brown and Autumn “Snow White” Brock did on Saturday night. You have to attend this event with your kids: It’s so much fun to let go—dressing up and having play time all night long with your family. Hope I see you there next year, acting like a kid again.