Cumbria Crack

Dragon comes to life at Rheged for Penrith’s May Day


[B]lue Jam Arts are calling for youngsters to help bring the Penrith May Day Dragon puppet to life, in a series of craft workshops this Saturday and Sunday 29 and 30 April at the Rheged Centre, Penrith.

Children can have a go at the Samba drums, make giant dragon scales for the puppet, and make their own flame head dress to take away with them, with help from Josh Jackson and Bryony Jarman-Pinto from BlueJam Arts. The full programme of sessions can be found at

“BlueJam is excited to continue its collaboration with Rheged to deliver these workshops this weekend. It’s a great opportunity for children and their grownups to come to such an exciting venue and get to play the samba drums and take part in fun and creative workshops. Many of the children may have taken part in the Big Sing at the Big Screen events we have been putting on in the IMAX cinema so successfully for the past few years.” Jilly Jarman, Creative Director, BlueJam Arts.

On Sunday at 2.30pm, BlueJam Arts will also be hosting a mini B-Jamba Parade at Rheged. Participants can also sign up to join B-Jamba on Bank Holiday Monday in Penrith, and take pride of place in the “Penrith Lions’ May Day Parade” alongside the dancing Green Dragon.

BlueJam promotes the creation, performance and sharing of new music and new ways of making music in accessible, multimedia environments. They run a 7+ beginners Children’s Orchestra, an under-7 Marmalade Music, and jazz, folk, choir and samba sessions all in Penrith and in Cumbrian schools. B Jamba Community Samba Drum group play at parades and festivals around Cumbria – including Penrith Lions’ May Day! Find out more at

Sessions start at 11am. Tickets are £5 per child, and can be booked online at or bought on the day from the Rheged Welcome Desk.

With a ticket, you can take part in any of the sessions below. Tickets can be booked at

Saturday 29th May

  • 11am – 12pm: Have a go at playing the Samba Drums
  • 12pm – 1pm: Headdress Making and Dragon Scales
  • 1pm – 2pm: Have a go at playing the Samba Drums
  • 2pm – 3pm: Headdress Making and Dragon Scales

Sunday 30th May

  • 11am – 12pm: Headdress Making and Dragon Scales
  • 12pm – 1pm: Have a go at playing the Samba Drums
  • 1pm – 2pm: Headdress Making and Dragon Scales
  • 2pm – 2:30pm: Samba musicians prepare for the Rheged parade
  • 2:30pm – 3pm: Join in with the Samba beats of the Rheged Parade and help to wake the Dragon!