By Kaitlin Candelaria
Lunch time on U.S. 280 is always an event. Today, there was the usual traffic and hot weather with some ponies mixed in.
Nine-year-old Charlotte of Irondale was born with a rare terminal skin condition known as epidermolysis bullosa. Her skin does not bind to her muscles, causing painful sores, high infection rates and constant bandaging.
“One day, a Make-a-Wish commercial came on and Charlotte was watching it and said ‘Hey! I can do that!'” Debbie Gentry, Charlotte’s mother, said. Charlotte picked Disney World as her wish. After applying, Gentry said Make-a-Wish Alabama reached out to them to tell them Charlotte’s wish would come true and asked if they would mind if a community partner threw a surprise party for Charlotte.
“We were introduced through KC Projects, who represent Full Moon BBQ,” Pam Jones, executive director, said. “They know how much (Full Moon) gives back to the community and they know how much we do for the community, so they thought it would be a great partnership.” Jones said.
Once the company found out how much Charlotte loves My Little Pony, they set to work creating a perfect pony-themed party.
“They took it to the next degree,” Jones said. “They completely ran with this idea and got some ponies for the children to ride. It was a nice touch because Charlotte has been through so much but her spirit is just indomitable.”
In addition to riding actual ponies, Charlotte was treated to a My Little Pony-themed party with cake and food from Full Moon BBQ. Charlotte and her family will be traveling on an all-expense paid trip to Disney World in November. Charlotte said she is most excited to meet Donald Duck. For more information on the Alabama chapter of Make-a-Wish, visit www.alabama.wish.org.