WOOSTER — Children may want to linger at the Kids’ Creation Station at Wooster Arts Jazz Fest. Not only will they have a chance to be crafty, they'll be able to use what they make to participate in the festival parade.
Decorating the umbrellas, or parasols, with which visitors march in the parade, is annually a popular activity at the Creation Station, said Christine Lindeman, Boys & Girls Club of Wooster executive director who will be helping out with the children’s booth.
"We sometimes run out of (them)," she said, noting they are simple white umbrellas which festival personnel purchased at a craft store.
"Come before the parade if you want to get one made," Lindeman urged.
"There are a lot of crafts this year focusing on music," she said, ranging from drawing and painting musical notes to making maracas out of paper lunch bags.
Also available will be "really cool flutes made of straws cut from different lengths," she said, which will actually "play like a little flute."
"Our summer staff helped design the crafts," Lindeman said, calling them "kid-tested."
Boys & Girls Club staff will assist at the station, as will volunteers from Wooster City Schools, the Wayne County Schools Career Center and Wooster Rotary.
All of the crafts are free, said Lindeman.
Other activities include face painting and balloon art. On hand this year will be two balloon artists, said Gretchen Tefs, a College of Wooster visiting instructor and one of the Creation Station volunteers.
One of the balloon artists, Noah Sholl, has been performing at the Arts Jazz Fest since 2010; he was in sixth-grade at the time in Orrville.
Now from Oberlin, Sholl, who has competed in balloon competitions in Las Vegas, Chicago and Florida, and has performed at the Woollybear Festival in Vermilion with Dick Goddard and on Fox 8's Operation Giving Tree, calls his business "Imagine That Ballooning."
"I started out with one or two-balloon creations," said Sholl, 22, progressing to the largest he has done so far — a 12-foot high Eiffel Tower.
While he can’t do anything quite that complicated at the Arts Jazz Fest, he does promise some "very impressive line work" as festival patrons wait in line no longer than 20-30 minutes for the creation of their choice — often, "princesses, dogs, silly hats and aliens."
If a child doesn’t have a preference, "I give them some options," Sholl said, pointing out many of the children attending are familiar with him, having seen him at birthday parties or school functions.
Reporter Linda Hall can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 330-264-1125, Ext. 2230. She is @lindahallTDR on Twitter.