Make a Difference in the Community.
Make a Difference in the World.
That was the goal of the RPI EcoPrincess Festival held at the Student Union of Rensselaer on December 7th. Typically Disney Princesses promote the ideas of love at first sight, being rescued by Prince Charming, and being a victim within your female skin. But not anymore. The festival was designed as a confidence boosting workshop to encourage and promote self worth while developing sustainable lifestyles.
I had the great pleasure of working with my pageant sister and best friend Adrienne on her personal project to integrate Disney Princesses, and her pageant platform of conservation and sustainability into a school festival for youth at a polytechnic college. It took months of planning, dedication, and volunteer recruitment. She cast each princess, designed costumes, and created activities for the youth to complete to instill valuable life lessons into the guests.
Somehow, I was recruited last minute to play the role of Princess Jasmine. The prior actress had dropped out moments before the festival, and as Best Friend I filled the spot. Although I didn’t do my job very well, I got bored at my booth, I did have some good conversions with the children and some of the Princes. The Princesses, such as myself, led stations in an Eco Scavenger Hunt of sorts. Students would come around to each station and perform an activity about a specific conservation activity, such as water pollution, energy conservation, or healthy food choices.
The Juggling Club had a table set up with fun props for the children to play with. Ben and Jerry’s donated 3 gallons of delicious ice cream. The RPI Photo Club set up a photo booth for guests to try on costumes and take photos with. Troy Compost taught kids about vermicomposting, and gave a workshop on making a worm bin. There were Mad Libs with Peter Pan and Tinkerbell and Story Time and liquid nitrogen magic. Tee shirts and pins were sold to help pay for the cost of the event. And girls got a plant as a prize for completing the Challenge. But above all else, it was a place to make friends. This Princess found a *prince. But more on that later.
After the kids had finished their challenges and recieved their herb plant prizes, the Juggling Club performed. Dave of Dangerous Comedy performed a unicycling hoop routine, while juggling members such as Allison (as Ariel) juggled, Mike spun poi, Gary contact juggled, Josh (above shown Prince) spun his Diablo, and Pat spun a puppy hammer. The kids loved it.
|Be brave. Be strong. Be responsible. And be the difference.|
*Note: the Prince mentioned is not the Prince pictured. He was off slaying dragons while I was taking pictures.