TOWNSEND — More than 60 preschoolers took it all in. The children appeared highly engaged and participated in the “Peter Rabbit” presentation put on by John McDowell from Pumpernickel Puppets.
Giggles and clapping could be heard along with seeing huge smiles and wonder in the student’s faces while colorful puppets performed.
Pumpernickel Puppets made two appearances for the Squannacook Early Childhood Center. For each production, McDowell designs and creates his puppets; from small hand puppets to larger-than-life figures, and plays the entire cast including all the voices.
After the show John shows students behind the stage and how he works the puppets. Pumpernickel Puppets has captivated audiences of all ages for more than 35 years. It is in its second year at SECC. He has also presented for many years at Spaulding Memorial School.
Sharon Whittier, paraprofessional at SECC, said John’s shows are always well received by students and faculty and that Pumpernickel Puppets has always made their shows affordable.
“This year, SECC applied for a cultural grant through the Townsend Cultural Council and was denied, if it wasn’t for the dedicated PTO at SECC we may have not been able to have the show,” said Whittier.
Whittier feels dramatic play is an essential part of preschool, and an important part of our children’s education. Whittier also stressed that pre-schoolers learn through their experience and it’s important at this age to get them going.
“This is often the first cultural experience for many of our students and is always a great one! John shows the students how easy it is. The students often go back to their classrooms and want to make puppets!” said Whittier. Whittier is optimistic and hopes in the future grants will be provided to ensure the growth in our children’s education.