For a little lover of all things princess, a visit from Anna, Elsa and any number of other popular princesses to their birthday party would be a dream come true.
Stephanie Dickerson has been making that happen for the last couple of years, adding a little bit of royalty to the usual cupcakes, goody bags and party games.
Dickerson, a Raleigh mom of two, founded Fairytale Dreamer after her sister-in-law saw an opening in the local market for children's parties. Today, she has 16 characters for both boys and girls to choose from. She's working to expand to offer the service elsewhere.
We'll be having a royal visit during Go Ask Mom's event at North Hills' Midtown Farmers Market next week from one of Dickerson's princesses. We'll be out there from 8 a.m. to noon, Sept. 13.
I checked in with Dickerson to learn more about her and what she offers. Here's our email chat!
Go Ask Mom: Tells us about yourself. How did you get involved in this business?
Stephanie Dickerson: I grew up in Raleigh, and I am married to my high school sweetheart. I went to N.C. State, where I was a cheerleader (GO PACK!). Now I'm happily a stay-at-home mom of two. I got involved in this business after talking to my sister-in-law, who noticed that there was a need for this type of business in the area. It has been an exciting and joy-filled experience! Watching the company grow from a small seed of an idea into what we are now has been very rewarding.
GAM: What does Fairytale Dreamer offer?
SD: We are a premiere children's entertainment company. Fairytale Dreamer has 16 different characters to choose from for boys and girls parties. We offer different packages, ranging from a pop-in appearance to full-party entertainment. Our characters have custom-made wigs and costumes. They fully interact with the children and truly make the day a most memorable event.
GAM: How do you find your princesses?
SD: My princesses have been found through word of mouth, or through connections with friends and family members.
GAM: Does the business allow you to balance your time as a mom?
SD: At times it can be difficult being a stay-at-home mom and running a successful company, but I'm very grateful for the opportunities that Fairytale Dreamer has allowed our family to have. I enjoy being home during the week with the kids, and then if I personally have to work, it's only on weekends for short periods of time. It allows us to have a lot of time together as a family.
GAM: What do you love about this job? What kind of reactions do you get from the kids?
SD: When I see the look of absolute joy on the kids' faces when I walk into a party, it's one of the best feelings in the world! I get emotional every time I see that kind of reaction from them. The children are so excited, and sometimes in shock, when they see us! We've even had parents cry when they see how happy they've made their children by inviting one of the characters to their child's party.
GAM: How do you hope it will grow in the years to come?
SD: I am currently expanding into other towns in North Carolina. I also want to continue to add more characters to our group.
Go Ask Mom features local moms every Monday.