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Ping Pong's Puppet Workshop

Victor, The dragon gets ready

Victor, the Dragon being readied for the parade. The rain did not do well with his papier mache construction, and he'll need some refurbishment before venturing out again.

At the staging area

OK, folks, listen up -- Fire is over here, Air is over there, Earth is across the street, and Water -- well, water is soon to be everywhere!

The tarantula gets ready

The tarantula gets ready to march. On the ground, an odd combination of hail and tree blossom petals.

Oh, what a lovely day for a parade

Oh, what a lovely day for a parade

May 6, 2001

April 28 in Portland, Oregon dawned bright enough, and it looked like the forecast of rain might be wrong.

Well, it wasn't! The morning dawned mostly cloudy, but with some sun breaks that meant the day could go either way.

We were taking part in Portland Oregon's third annual Procession of the Species, a parade and festival held to celebrate Earth Day.

The date happened to coincide with the Puppeteers of America's National Day of Puppetry, so Steve Overton, President; Marty Richmond, Newsletter Editor and Webmaster; Kris Bluett-Woolen, Vice-President-Membership; Justen Rambo, Secretary; Candace Dobson, and other members of the Columbia Association of Puppeteers volunteered to teach classes in how to build giant puppets.

Five Saturday and many late night sessions of puppet building led up to the parade..

We arrived at about 8:30, and began unloading the truck full of puppets and other equipment for the parade.

There were over 1,000 people asssembled to march, families with their kids, middle-school students, retirees, belly dancers, and just plain folk. We spent the morning getting everybody and their puppets ready.

We were to step off in the parade at 11:15, and although it stayed dry as we were getting everybody ready for the parade, just as we were lining up, it began to hail. Pea-sized ice pellets fell from the sky for about five minutes, bouncing off of everybody, but everybody stayed dry because the water was frozen.

Then, the wind picked up, and the hail turned to rain. The temperature dropped into the upper 50's, and off we went.

The rain increased in volume, and everybody got drenched, and stayed drenched throughout the length of the parade.

Many of the marchers gave up in the early stages of the parade, but most of our intrepid CAP members made it through to the end.

More pictures of the parade can be found at our sister website www.cappuppets.org, the official web site of the Columbia Association of Puppeteers.


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All text and photos © 2001 Olde World Puppet Theatre

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