Imelda Geerman-Willems: 18 years of bringing joy to children

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(Oranjestad)—For 18 long years now, Imelda Geerman-Willems have brought joy to the children of Aruba with her puppets, and in recent years, with her magnificent puppet shows. In an interview with our reporter, Imelda shares her journey that has led her into the world of child entertainment and puppetry.

Imelda has been a government worker for 30 years. She told our reporter that she comes from a family of 8 children; 5 girls, 3 boys. She is the youngest of the bunch. She’s been married to Patrick Geerman for 22 years and they have one teenage son who is now 19 years old.

Imelda worked at Party Animals for 8 and a half years, but after her mother passed away, she decided to stop working at children’s parties. “My mother’s passing left a hole in my heart. Not long after that, I lost my father as well. It was a really rough time,” she expressed.

A couple months after quitting Party Animals, she started to miss the joy of making children happy. After talking to her husband about how she felt, he started to prepare a surprise for her.

“When I saw materials start to come in the house, he surprised me with a number from the Chamber of Commerce with the name ‘EZ party solutions’ on it. It’s been 18 years since that surprise, and it was one of the best things that has happened to me. I was able to go back to making children happy,” she shared.

The first show from EZ Party Solutions included Tio George and Tanchi Esmee (Uncle George and Aunt Esmee). Imelda explained that at that time, she had never visited Disney Land, but was really hoping to go one day. This gave her the idea to give children that may not have the luxury to go to Disney Land, to enjoy the same type of characters that you see there.

The first costume that Imelda got was a Hello Kitty costume for a friend’s party. After that, they met with a group preparing their set for the Carnaval Queen show, with their theme being Sesame Street. Imelda and her husband immediately offered to provide costumes for the show—which ultimately won for best show that year.

After working on two shows with Tio George and Tanchi Esmee, Imelda shared that she did something beyond her comfort zone: she produced her own show named “Masha and the Bear.” This show sold out 6 times over before it even premiered.

This year, she organized the show called “Encanto and Friends.” She explained that after she saw the movie Encanto, she was inspired to make this show, along with the beloved character Sonic. After 4 full houses, EZ Party Solutions, along with dance group Kids & Youth in Action, received an invitation to perform in Curacao.

“This was my dream come true, thanks to the EZ crew, my family—and last but not least, my promoter, Corine. We were able to represent Aruba and have left a beautiful mark. In Curacao, we were able to sell out the show and perform for 1500 people in the audience. From the moment the first song played, you could hear the children’s excitement. It really warmed our hearts and made us less nervous. It was a beautiful experience. It does take a lot of work, but it’s always worth it for the kids. A big thanks goes to Miss Debra for joining the show,” she expressed.

For what’s in store this year, Imelda assures that there is a great show coming soon, but that she couldn’t give away too much yet.

Lastly, Imelda extends her gratitude to everyone that has helped her dreams of bringing joy to children come true. “Once again, I want to thank God for giving me the energy and the motivation to do what I do, to my family for their support and patience, and to my crew who has always gone all out to make things happen.”