After a successful first year of building costumes for kids, 2016 was all about growth. The goal for Walkin’ & Rollin’ Costumes has always been to build a network of builders willing to help construct these costumes for kids all over the nation, and eventually, the world. That way, when a family requests a costume, we can pair them up with a builder in their city to help make this child’s costume a reality. After all, it is much easier to build the costume with the child’s actual chair there for fittings to assure that the costume is going to fit properly.
Through the use of our website signup page, we began building a network of volunteers from all over the nation, that were willing to provide their unique skill sets to making these costumes in their individual cities. We opened the opportunity for companies and small groups to sponsor a costume. They could provide the funding for the supplies and shipping costs for a single costume, or multiple costumes, or they could be more involved and help design and build the costumes as well. It was all up to how involved they wanted to be.
10 year old Reese, became our youngest costume designer and created his very own “Royals Salvy Splash” costume. This was also the first costume we built, that was requested by another child after seeing Reese’s costume in person. Walkin’ & Rollin’ Costumes really took off on social media when another design we created in 2016 caused quite a lot of press. Our Ant-Man and Antony costume design was the first costume we made with moving legs on the costume, all controlled by the movement of the wheelchair itself. After debuting at Planet Comicon for one day, the video was viewed over 10 million times on Twitter, and caught the attention of the cast and crew of the “Ant-Man” movie. This media attention resulted in magazine articles, news interviews, and a surge in volunteers wanting to help, and new requests for kids costumes.
Walkin’ & Rollin’ Costume’s History
We never knew that when our 3 year old son wanted to be Wall-E for Halloween, and we built a costume around his wheelchair, that it was the beginning of an epic journey of discovery. Not just discovery of what we can build and design around a wheelchair, but the discovery of how that simple wheelchair costume would forever change our son’s outlook toward life. His self esteem skyrocketed, his peers, who used to look at him differently, suddenly looked at him in awe and saw him as just another kid with an incredible Halloween costume. He became proud of his costume and shared it with everyone he met. It was in that moment that we realized this was not just a Halloween costume made of cardboard, paint, and plastic. It was so much more, and it would forever change our lives.
We wanted to share that same experience with other families. We’ve come a long way over the years, and we have so much further to go. Our goal is to build unique costumes for ever special needs kid who would like one, free of charge to the families. Check out the timeline below to see how we’ve grown, and to see how you can help us achieve that goal.
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Walkin' & Rollin' Costumes is a qualified 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.
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