Earth Day Giant Puppet Parade 2016

Image: Mother Earth head done in papier mâché, wearing a purple headscarf with beaded black hair. (Photo by Lindsay Fleming)
Meet Mother Earth, the Cheap Art Collective’s tallest puppet and star of our last two puppet shows taking place during NDG Arts Week every summer.  This Earth Day, we decided to bring her out to celebrate at Co-Op La Maison Verte’s “Célébrons le jour de la Terre” event. The collective, our friends, and passers-by formed small but happy group of folks from all over NDG. Melanie donned the Mother Earth puppet as we paraded down Sherbrooke St. to the delight of pedestrians and drivers alike, especially as the group started singing whatever came to mind.
“The Earth is Our Mother…. We Must Take Care of Her!”
Image: Left) Melanie Stuy wearing the Mother Earth puppet: a sheet cascades from below Mother Earth head just above her. Right) Children holding a “Happy Earth Day” banner in the park with Mother Earth puppet just behind. (Photos by Lindsay Fleming)
The gloriously sunny day meant there were many people playing and picnicking at NDG Park, where the group paraded through and brought a smile to every face. We even passed around the Chalet, home to  NDG Park Art Hive last summer (and excited to get back in there this year!). More people joined us as we headed back to the Co-Op to play and enjoy music performed by the NDG Singing Circle.
Image: A group of people of various ages standing on the side of Sherbrooke Street in the sun. Mother Earth puppet stands in the middle. (Photo by Lindsay Fleming)
Amazingly, this was another activity that was born in St. Raymond. Two years ago (Earth Day 2014), a group of neighbors decided a wonderful way to celebrate Earth Day would be to parade with our puppets and instruments down Upper Lachine into Oxford Park.
Image: Top Left) Caterpillar puppet on the sidewalk. Bottom Left) Grey fish puppet with puppeteers peeking out underneath. Right) Families who took part in first Earth Day Giant Puppet Parade. (Photos by Melanie Stuy)
 It was silly and fun. The children loved it. Back then as it was this year, perhaps the one thing celebrated even more than Earth that day was the amazing bond between the Cheap Art Collective’s members.

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