FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) – For most kids, the options for Halloween costumes are endless. For a child in a wheelchair, it can be a challenge.
There are few options, if any. But the creative geniuses at Monster City Studios are making sure one special little girl isn’t left out.
“They get what they want. It’s driven by the kid's dreams,” says James A. Powell, Founder and Vice President of Fresno-based Monster City Studios.
For the past week, workers have been painting, sanding, sculpting, and designing a costume to transform a local 7-year-old girl, living with Cerebral Palsy, into Princess Jasmine from Disney’s Aladdin.
“Caroline’s gonna be able to get out in her costume and it’s gonna be great!” says Powell.
The team at Monster City Studios was recruited by the organization Magic Wheelchair, which has provided customized costumes for more than 275 families with disabilities.
“All I have to say is Magic Wheelchair and everyone jumps on board,” says Powell.
The costume will be full of details—and additional characters. It will feature a magic carpet and the city of Agrabah at Caroline’s feet.
Artist Amanda Moreno worked on Abu—Aladdin’s pet monkey and sidekick.
“I like the little challenges of it,” she said, as she painted Abu’s eyes. “It’s exciting we get to see their reaction, how much they’re gonna love it. This is fun!”
In another room, Steve Gravano and John Fields worked on Genie and his magic lamp.
“It’s for the enjoyment of a little girl and that is super freakin’ cool,” said Fields, who has worked on previous Magic Wheelchair Projects.
Powell says this is likely Monster City’s 13th or 15th wheelchair costume to date.
While the costume makes a splash on Halloween, he hopes the impact goes beyond the holiday.
“Sometimes if they go to a playground they’re not initially accepted by other kids,” Powell said “So maybe next time they see a kid in a wheelchair, they see them for who they are, not the machine they’re on. For the beautiful people, they are.”
Monster City Studios will present Caroline the wheelchair Friday morning, during The Drew Show on New Rock 104.1.
The non-profit is always looking for additional builders—not just professionals. There is a waiting list of more than 500 children, waiting for a costume. If you’d like to volunteer or donate money, you can find more information here.