PHOENIX — In a one-room studio in the Phoenix Grand Avenue Historic District, Stacey Gordon brings characters and imagination to life.
"I think it's the same thing that everybody finds fascinating," said Gordon. "It's the other world that you get to play and live in for a little while."
She started puppeteering and building puppets in church when she was 14. Today, she owns Puppet Pie where she teaches others how to build and bring puppets to life.
"What I love seeing about kids creating all of this stuff is their discovering how the world works," said Gordon. "When I see adults do it, they're remembering what it was to play."
Gordon has played a lot of roles through puppets. Her most popular is Julia on Sesame Street, the first autistic puppet on the show.
Now she wants to take her own show to Valley streets in a 1973 ice cream truck.
"I think that most people would have sent this truck to the dump but it deserves to be brought back to life," she said.
She bought the truck for $7,500 but now, with a grant through the Arizona Office of Arts and Culture, she's able to finish turning the truck into a mobile art and puppet theater. The goal is for her to go to kids who wouldn't otherwise be able to see a show in person.
"I hope that they learn lessons about themselves, about perseverance, about their community, about seeing people come together to create something."
For more information on Puppet Pie or to book the mobile puppet theater, click here.