About four years ago, Henderson resident Valerie Poteete, who goes by the name Penelope Pendragon, was unhappy with her life.
Her son had left for the U.S. Air Force. Her house was in foreclosure. A nine-year relationship with her boyfriend had ended. At 235 pounds, Pendragon was miserable and ready to make a change.
“So I pretty much excavated my life,” Pendragon said.
About 90 pounds lighter and a new attitude later, Pendragon now speaks about how positive energy and the laws of attraction have changed her life to make her wishes and dreams come true.
Pendragon now wants to travel to fairs and festivals teaching children how to make their dreams come true.
“I actually have a proven formula to help make wishes come true,” Pendragon said. “I am a WISH facilitator. WISH is an acronym that means ‘What is stated, happens.’ “
Pendragon also wants to teach children about positive and negative energy using the theme of fairies and goblins.
She has created a wishing cart that features information about fairies and goblins to accomplish her ultimate goal of helping children become more positive, which she believes will help save the world. She plans to feature the wishing cart at various events.
“I believe if we can teach this to children, we can save the world,” Pendragon said. “I guess I want world peace just like Miss America. But I actually have a plan to do it.”
Pendragon said she has seen countless books teaching adults about the law of attraction and positive thinking, but she said she hasn’t seen any for children.
“I guess that’s what I’m here for,” Pendragon said.
When Pendragon sets up her cart, she invites children, and even adults, into the realm of fantasy where anyone can make a wish come true as long as they feed it with positive energy.
Pendragon is currently on the road traveling to various Renaissance festivals throughout California.
She recently started presenting her exhibit locally – First Friday in Downtown Las Vegas was one of her first appearances .
Pendragon said the audience wasn’t as open to the concept as she’d hoped .
“Renaissance festivals have the best audiences,” Pendragon said. “They are already open to the fantasy realm.”
Suzanne Lugano, a friend of Pendragon, has seen her in action firsthand.
“She is telling people things they need to hear,” Lugano said. “The message is extremely important and really hits home.”
Receiving her wishing wagon actually was a wish come true for Pendragon. She encountered the wagon in 2001 when it was just a kiosk at a mall.
“I was walking around in the Aladdin Hotel, and I saw it,” Pendragon said.
Even though she didn’t know what exactly she could use it for, Pendragon knew she wanted to own the cart.
A year later, the cart showed up at her boyfriend’s neighbor’s house.
“It was just sitting there in his yard,” Pendragon said. “He told me he would sell it to me for $30,000.”
Still not knowing what she would use it for, she held off.
“And I’m glad I did,” Pendragon said. “I found out I had cancer the next year and lost everything.”
After she finished her treatment and started to get back on her feet again, the cart’s owner asked if she wanted to purchase it for $18,000.
“At that time, I needed furniture and stability,” Pendragon said. “I couldn’t afford the cart. But somehow, I knew it was supposed to be mine.”
Even when Pendragon moved across town, she would drive by the owner’s house just to get a glimpse of the cart .
In 2008, the owner contacted Pendragon again.
“He told me to come get it out of his yard because it was mine,” Pendragon said.
Pendragon instructed her friends, whom she refers to as the Geek Squad , to find a way to put wheels on the cart so it could become a traveling cart.
Pendragon still had no idea what it would be used for and stored the wagon at a friend’s house until she could come up with an idea. After she moved into a motor home, she developed a new rule.
“If I didn’t use it frequently or make money off it, I had to sell it,” Pendragon said.
Not wanting to sell her cart, she decided to turn it into a wishing wagon.
“She had the kiosk for a long time,” said Lugano, who also helped decorate the cart. “She tried using it for many things, but it never quite fit. When she started transforming it into the wishing wagon, it came alive.”
The cart was completed in January. The inside pays homage to the fantasy realm with details about wishing, dragons, fairies and goblins. This year, Pendragon started making presentations at different festivals.
Pendragon’s presentation is free, but she accepts donations to help fund the exhibit.
“I believe people believe in me because they do donate and there is no obligation,” Pendragon said.
For more information, visit facebook.com/penelope.pendragon.
Contact Henderson/Anthem View reporter Michael Lyle at email@example.com or 387-5201.