By Kate Merrill, WBZ-TVBy Kate Merrill

BOSTON (CBS) – It’s the centerpiece of First Night, kicking off the evening, a colorful, musical extravaganza snaking down Boylston St. It’s the Grand Procession, and a lucky bunch of kids is going to be in the thick of it.

At workshops in several Boston locations, kids have been designing and making their own animal puppets. We visited one workshop at the Nazzarro Community Center in the North End where the kids were practicing making their four legged friends come to life. “They like making things, they like being in the parade, they like performing,” says Sara Peattie from the Puppeteers Collaborative who runs the workshop. Sara’s been making puppets for the First Night parade since the celebration began. “It’s like the longest relationship in my life with the audience of First Night that I don’t even know,” she says.

Some of the young puppeteers have marched before. For others this will be a first. “The best thing is you get to see all kind of cool stuff,” says Sydney Barsky-Russo as she makes a cat puppet. “Last year I didn’t be in the parade, but this year I think I’m going to actually join in,” says Sonny Blazo, who has crafted a coyote. They’re colorful and cute and the kids are learning how to make them walk and on New Year’s Eve, it’s showtime. “The parade belongs to the people of Boston, and they should be involved in every way,” says Peattie.

And you can be involved. Anyone is welcome to meet outside the Hynes Auditorium before the procession, pick up a prop, and step off down Boylston St. The parade begins at 5:30p.


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