Professional Day for the Teaching Artist and Therapist

Plans for Puppet Homecoming 2014 are moving right along! We’re working on a great lineup of performances and workshops. We are also pleased to announce a new extension of the festival, especially for educators.

The Professional Day for the Teaching Artist and Therapist will be held Friday, Sept 5 from 9:00-3:00. People may register for the Thursday (Sept 4, 2014) night plus breakfast and lunch on Friday. There will be early registration for Professional Day registrants, Thursday evening and Friday am.

Photo from past Professional DayThe Professional Day for The Teaching Artist and Therapist is a day of Professional Development for puppeteers, educators and therapists. The goal is to present information that will help us all be more effective in working in educational and therapeutic settings. This year the presentations will focus on:

• Topics that meet specific areas of the National Common Core
• Dealing with sensitive issues through puppetry arts
• Hands-on projects that have been implemented and evaluated.

We are currently seeking presenters for this day-long event, the deadline is April 15. Presenters can use visual aids, PowerPoint, Slides, video, etc. Each presenter has a 30-minute time allotment: 20 minutes for the presentation and 10 minutes for discussion. Presentations should be focused on ONE TOPIC and timed to allow for lively discussion.

Also included in the day:

• Break-out groups to discuss Puppetry in Education projects and Therapeutic Puppetry Arts projects

• A session featuring participant 6-minute presentations (see below)

• A certificate of completion will be given for presenters and participants to use for professional development points.

“Teaching artists are professional artists who have also developed the ability as educators (or therapists) to effectively draw people into the arts and artistic engagement. Teaching artists are relied on in organizations including schools, arts institutions, senior centers, juvenile justice and corporate programs,(hospitals,) etc. to engage people and incite active arts participation. The teaching artist field has rapidly grown in the last two decades as their skills become progressively more important in a world where creativity is increasingly associated with productivity.”
— David Marshall, Ma Cultural Council. ( ) added by Judith O’Hare

If you would like to be a presenter please contact Judith O’Hare, to receive a proposal form, or download one here.

Photos from past Professional Days

Performance and Workshop Applications Available

Performance and workshop applications for Puppet Homecoming 2014 are now available! The application deadline for performances and workshops is March 1, 2014.

Performances are being organized by the Boston Area Guild of Puppetry, and the contact person is Judith O’Hare, you can contact her with any questions. (See information in the application form.) Workshops are being organized by the Greater Philadelphia Area Guild of Puppetry, and the contact person is Lorna Howley, you can contact her with any questions. (See information in the application form.)

Fill out the online Performance Application here.

Or download the Performance Application as a PDF or a Word Doc.

Fill out the online Workshop Application here.

Or download the Workshop Application as a PDF or a Word Doc.

There are many opportunities to present performances and workshops of different lengths, so read the guidelines to find out how you can be involved. You can explore this website to learn about the performances and workshops from the previous Homecoming.

Registration for the Homecoming will open on April 1, 2014, and will be announced on this website.

* * *


Puppet Homecoming 2014 is coming!

Puppet Homecoming LogoThe Northeast and Mid-Atlantic Regions of Puppeteers of America are pleased to present Puppet Homecoming 2014, a gathering of puppeteers in picturesque Rhinebeck, NY, Sept. 5-7, 2014.

Events will include performances, workshops, exhibit, puppetry swap-meet, and more. There will be a late-night puppet salon for short works, as well as a puppet slam. The Homecoming is intended to be an affordable weekend of sharing, run entirely by volunteers, and costs will be kept low so more puppeteers can attend.

The location will be beautiful camp Ramapo for Children, the site of our Puppet Homecoming 2012 which was a great success, with 111 attendees. The site provides housing, performance and workshop space, meals, and five campsites. This will be a family-friendly event, and children are welcome.

The festival co-directors are Artie Poore and Sharon Peck. Each guild in the region is taking on a different aspect of the planning, and a call for proposals for workshops, performances, etc. will be going out in December.

For details and updates, keep checking this website or our Facebook page.

Mark your calendars, we hope to see you there!

Below are some photos from our last Homecoming in 2012.

Happy puppeteers from the New York area



Tucker's Tales

Sharon Peck and Nancy Sanders


Bernice Silver

Jim Napolitano


Open Hand Theater


* * *

Homecoming success!

LogoThe first Puppeteers of America Northeast Mid-Atlantic Regional Homecoming was a great success!  Many thanks to everyone who registered, volunteered, performed, exhibited, presented workshops, and helped make it a great event. The staff at Ramopo for Children was terrific and helpful all weekend.

We had 12 performances, a wide range of workshops from construction to performance to education, an engaging exhibit, a puppet swap and potpourri. Over 100 people from both regions and even some friends from the Great Lakes region attended and performed. This was a grand experiment to reinvent how our regions to gather and share our work, inspired by the Puppet Potlatch of the Great Lakes Region. We all hope it will grow and flourish in the years to come.

If you attended the Homecoming, please fill our our Feedback Form to help make the next one even better. You can see the form here.  A photo gallery is in the works, but in the meantime here are just a few pictures from the weekend, taken by Karen Bruce. Hope to see you all in two years!

Bernice Silver with Craig Marin and Olga Felgemacher of Flexitoon.

A Woodland Cinderella, performed by Deborah Costine

Dragon puppet on exhibit, by Artie Poore

Liz Joyce performs The Princess, the Frog and the Pea

Carole D’Agostino performs The Hoarding Show

* * *

Puppet Homecoming ready to go!

It’s here, the week of the Puppeteers of America Northeast/Mid-Atlantic Puppet Homecoming 2012! We have great lineup of performers and workshops, and so many people from different guilds have worked hard to put it all together.

A few last-minute notes, if you are using a GPS to get there, the address for Ramapo for Children is 101 Anchorage Trail, Rhinebeck NY 12572. Their website has driving directions here. It is also recommended that you bring your own towel and pillow. Registration starts at 4 PM on Friday, full schedule here.

Finally, we have recently uncovered the Secret Story of Puppet Homecoming, which we are reprinting below. Enjoy!

The Secret Story of Puppet Homecoming, by Justin Dupont

Once in a while the puppets in the Northeast like to take a break from all the birthday parties, children’s library openings, shopping malls, and even the downtown late night avant-garde art happenings and slams. So they organize a Puppet Homecoming. They choose a place far away from their daily lives; quite often somewhere up in the woods so they can “rough it”; loosen their strings, so to speak. And since a lot of puppets are made in part or completely of wood, they have a natural affinity for the trees.

The puppets begrudgingly bring along their humans; mostly for carrying the luggage. But the humans occasionally provide some entertainment with impromptu “Human Shows” for the puppets’ enjoyment. There is a lot of puppet socializing and getting together with old friends, and some catching up on new ideas or favorite puppet routines. A few of the more gregarious puppets provide performances in an informal setting. And Saturday night the strings get completely un-tied with open-ended experimentation and exploration.

During the day there is a freeform Trading Post where puppets can catch up on the latest puppet fashions, buy material for new ideas, and often get needed spare parts. Some of the most unique and beautiful puppets show themselves in an Exhibition, which is less about showing off and more about the pride and the enjoyment of the shapes, colors, and forms of puppetry. There are special workshops for puppets and humans. The puppets learn to hone their skills, and the humans learn how to take better care of the puppets. They all end the weekend invigorated, and ready to go where no puppets have dared to go before.

* * *