4 News Now Extreme Team brings holiday joy to kids in the hospital

Even from her hospital bed, Pippa Stuhmiller doesn’t have to look far to find some holiday spirit.

The four-year-old was recently admitted to Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital due to complications with a brain tumor. Her father, Andy Stuhlmiller, said they’ve spent time at the hospital during the holidays before. Each time, his daughter looks forward to seeing the 4 News Now Extreme Team’s ‘Making Spirits Bright’ display in Cowley Park.

“It’s fun having them right outside the window,” Andy said.

Volunteers have been working for days to light up the small park outside of the children’s hospital. Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Program Director Rachael McKinney said she looks forward to the project every year. She’s seen the impact it can have on kids.

“Nobody wants to be in the hospital any time of the year, let alone the holiday season, so if there is any tiny amount of joy that we can bring, just by children being able to look out their windows and see the Christmas lights, it’s meaningful,” McKinney said.

Children even spotted Santa placing lights at the top of towering trees.

I spy Santa helping the @kxly4news Extreme Team light up Cowley Park for sick kids at @providence_phc #4NewsNow pic.twitter.com/SPuvit8Lxe

— Ariana Lake (@arianaKXLY) November 26, 2019

The delightful display is a distraction from day-to-day realities, according to Assistant Nurse Manager Vicki Wendt.

“It’s a nice change,” Wendt said. “It helps give them joy through the whole holiday season.”

Tune in for the grand reveal of ‘Making Spirits Bright’ this Thursday starting at 5 p.m. You can only watch it on 4 News Now.