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Off-Ramp Recommends: Celebrate the spirit of puppeteer Bob Baker

by Rosalie Atkinson | Off-Ramp®

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Bob Baker Days is celebrating the late puppeteer with a weekend of carnival games, comedy, and of course puppet shows!

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Many long-time Angelenos will remember field trips, family excursions, and free intermission ice cream cups at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater in Downtown LA. Baker's colorful, handcrafted puppets captured the hearts of audiences from TV viewers ...

Baker played the plant in The Man Trap, the first episode of Star Trek that aired.
Baker played the plant in The Man Trap, the first episode of Star Trek that aired. Credit: Paramount

... to naval families during Baker's base tours, to attendees of his hometown performances. This weekend the theater, which is among the oldest puppet theaters in the country, is celebrating its late creator on the weekend of what would have been his 93rd birthday. (He died in 2014.)

Bob Baker
Bob Baker Courtesy of RockySchenck.com via Davidson & Choy

The non-profit theater is hosting a weekend of puppet shows, music, and comedy suitable for all ages. On Saturday, there will be a carnival spilling from the theater out onto First Street. The carnival features midway games, puppet making workshops with the LA Guild of Puppetry, food trucks, local artists, and of course round-the-clock puppet shows.

On Sunday the celebration heads back indoors to commemorate the history of the theater with screenings of Bob Baker's television appearances, a discussion of the significance of the theater with KPCC's own Alex Cohen. Finally, the night will end with a birthday party for Baker's spirit ... which is still going strong.

 February 25th and 26th at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater at 1345 W. First Street in Downtown LA. Tickets for the various events range from $20-$30. Visit the website for more information.

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