I was taking a stroll down State street the other evening, and on the corner of State and Madison was this puppet show stage attached to a bike. I'd seen it before in passing, but I'd never actually stopped and watched it. This time I did, and I can't describe to you how happy it made me! Puppet Bike is my new favorite thing!!
The Puppet Bike show consists of about ten puppets taking turns dancing to music under mini flashing theater lights and a tiny disco ball. The puppets blow kisses and wave to the audience, but they really ham it up if you give them money. You even have the option to hand the money directly to the puppets. If you do, the puppet will disappear and reappear in the plexiglass donation box on the front, dropping the money in. I'm not kidding, it's super adorable.
Puppet Bike is a concept by Chicago artist Jason Trusty. He created the bike years ago, constructing the state and building it onto the bike. It weighs several hundred pounds! He also painted the bike to give it its very bohemian-like design. Jason has a rotating cast of puppeteers who take turns through the week, working for tips. The puppeteers give Jason a portion of their earnings for bike and stage maintenance.
And if the whole 'free puppet show on a bike' wasn't cool enough for you, how about the fact that the bike is partially run by solar panels on its plywood roof! These not only keep the music and lights going but also provides heat for the puppeteers in the winter and fans in the summer.
This may not seem like the most "adult" enjoyment, but for me nothing brightens a gritty workday more than a bright, colorful puppet show.