We have so much fun in our booth playing with kids and adults alike and seeing them smiling and happy. Our puppets almost always bring smiles :) The times when they don't can be fairly traumatic though. The marionettes actually have a tendency to scare some of the youngest kids and we have caused quite a few screams and tears. To avoid this we try to watch the reactions of the stroller-bound set very closely ;) One mother came running excitedly into our booth with her grinning 2 year old son and asked if we could show him how a marionette worked. I happily obliged but, the moment the hairy beast took his first step, the boy backed up as fast as he could and hid behind his mother, screaming. After a startled moment we understood that he was actually screaming, "I want it, I want it!!" Though scared to death he loved that monster! It took him a good 5 minutes to get over his fear enough to touch it, but he kept trying until he managed it. We were all laughing so hard! Later that day he even brought his dad over to the booth to introduce him to his new friends, this time all smiles :)
Grown men and women are not immune to the allure of puppets. Sarah introduced a new design to our menagerie this summer- some Yip-Yipping friends that were like magnets drawing adults over-because it is the older generation who recognize them and truly appreciates their simple genius. We had men who reinacted almost the entire telephone scene, full of Brrrrrrrings and uh-huh's. It was incredibly entertaining. Pictures of people with the Yip-yips as well as the Muppet style, Monsters, and Rod Armed styles were plastered all over facebook and instagram. They were as good as rock stars!
I love to see the shy and quiet kids, who can hardly get up the courage to point out the marionette they would like to try, light up, smile, and relax once they start getting the marionette walking and dancing about. One particular moment stands out when a boy around 9 or 10 came up and quietly pointed out a spikey red-furred marionette he wanted to try. The edges of the booth were crowded with multiple groups of busy adults at this moment, but as soon he started walking it around, they began to oooo and ahhh and everybody turned to watch admiringly. That boy stood taller and his face just shone with pride as a grin split his face from ear to ear. The moment didn't last too long, but it made the whole day worthwhile for me.
There are many more people and thus many more stories, but these were a few of my favorites that I wanted to share! I can't wait to see what the next show brings! Hope to see you there!