Thursday, April 16, 2015

Final Muppet and Henson Lots Offered by Puppetry Arts!

Items to be auctioned have been donated from Steve Whitmire's private collection of Jim Henson-related memorabilia gathered throughout more than 37 years as a core performer in nearly every Muppet™ project produced for numerous television series, theatrical motion pictures, television specials, and albums.  All “Whitmire’s Wonders” auction proceeds go toward the funding of the new Museum to house the Jim Henson Collection at the Center for Puppetry Arts®.

Whitmire currently performs Kermit the Frog and for 23 years portrayed Sesame Street's Ernie, characters who were originated and performed by Henson prior to his untimely death in 1990, as well as Statler and Beaker, originally performed by Richard Hunt.

Whitmire's primary original Muppet™ characters include Rizzo the Rat, Lips the trumpet player, and Miss Piggy’s dog Foo-Foo from The Muppet Show™, Wembley Fraggle, Sprocket the Dog, Marlon Fraggle and Flange Doozer fromFraggle Rock, Bean Bunny, Flash and Waldo C. Graphic from The Jim Henson Hour, Andy Pig and Mr. Poodlepants from Muppets Tonight™ and Jake the Polar Bear from Jim Henson's Animal Show with Stinky and Jake, as well as dozens of others from various productions, including Robbie Sinclair and B.P. Richfield from the television series Dinosaurs and various roles in the feature films DreamchildLabyrinth, and The Dark Crystal.

The remaining Whitmire’s Wonders collection will be auctioned in three lots:  April 16-24, May 18-22, and June 15-19. Bidders may preview the upcoming lot at:

Some items are mass-produced pop culture items, while others are incredibly rare and only released to those directly involved in various productions. Most groups of items include at least one item autographed by Whitmire.

Auction proceeds will benefit the Center for Puppetry Arts’ highly anticipated renovation and expansion plans. The project, set to open in Fall 2015, will include a new museum to house the world’s most comprehensive collection of Jim Henson’s puppets and artifacts along with its Global Collection of puppets. Project highlights also include a new library and archival space, a renovated entryway and many other upgrades to existing spaces that will ultimately enhance the experience for the Center’s visitors.

“Since it opened in 1978, Jim Henson loved and supported the Center for Puppetry Arts throughout his life,” says Whitmire. “Thanks to him, I’m fortunate to be able to not only have this amazing career, but to share in the legacy of his life’s work. I hope that by donating all of this fun Henson-related Muppet™ stuff to the Center for auction, I can help them    to build their future. I think Jim would have loved that!”

More information on the auction and how to support the Center for Puppetry Arts’ Museum Expansion is available online at

The Center for Puppetry Arts is supported in part by: Fulton County Arts Council • City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs • Isdell Family Foundation • Aetna Foundation •The Wish Foundation Fund of the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta • PNC •The Coca-Cola Foundation • WSB-TV Family 2 Family Project • YP • Regency Suites Hotel • For a complete list of the Center’s major supporters, visit

Center for Puppetry Arts® is a unique cultural treasure – a magical place where children and adults are educated, enlightened, and entertained. Since 1978, the Center has introduced millions of visitors to the wonder and art of puppetry and has touched the lives of many through enchanting performances, curriculum-based workshops, and the hands-on Museum as well as Distance Learning and Outreach programs. Center for Puppetry Arts is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization and is supported in part by contributions from corporations, foundations, government agencies, and individuals. Major funding is provided by the Fulton County Board of Commissioners. Major support is also provided by the City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. The Center is a member of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre; Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA/USA/ASSITEJ); and International Performing Arts for Youth (IPAY).The Center also serves as headquarters of UNIMA-USA, the American branch of Union Internationale de la Marionnette, the international puppetry organization.

All marks, logos, images, characters and elements are trademarks of their respective rights holders and are used here through the courtesy of The Jim Henson Company, Disney, and Sesame Workshop. © 2015. All Rights Reserved. 

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