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Puppet project: Calgarians learn to make ‘really entertaining’ little characters

Calgarians are getting a new chance to do some real hands-on creative crafting.

They’re bringing some cool characters to life with some pretty unusual materials.

Sparrow Artspace in the city’s Bridgeland neighbourhood is hosting several puppet-making workshops throughout the month of March.

Veteran Calgary artist Jenny Dale Stables is one of the people leading the sessions.

“Puppets require us to be creative, to problem-solve” Stables said. “Puppets can be made out of anything you’ve got at home.”

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During one workshop, Stables was encouraging the kids in attendance to imagine what kind of puppets they could fashion out of small dried gourds.

“This goofy little character that comes to life out of these weird materials,” said 10-year-old Faith Pham.

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Faith’s six-year-old sister was also enjoying the puppet-crafting session.

“They’re just really fun to make,” Grace Pham said. “And when you’re bored, you could also play with them with your friends.”

Stables’ sons James and Myles were also exploring the puppet possibilities with their mom.

“You make up characters in your head,” said 11-year-old James Stables. “Then you try and make them out of stuff that you just find.”

James’ brother added another reason for enjoying the activity.

“You don’t have to follow rules,” said nine-year-old Myles Stables.

People involved in presenting the workshops are looking forward to introducing others to the field.

“Puppetry encourages risk-taking, it encourages creativity,” Jenny Dale Stables said. “There are so many ways you can express yourself through puppetry.”

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