Center for Puppetry Arts (Atlanta, GA)


  • Name:Ms. Heather Karellas
  • Title:Development Manager

Organization Address

  • Organization Name:Center for Puppetry Arts
  • Address:1404 Spring St NW
    Atlanta, GA 30309-2820
    United States

Organization Phone

  • Main phone:404.873.3089
  • Main fax:404.881.5168

Organization Web

User Phone

  • Direct phone:404.881.5118

User Email


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  • Mission:
  • The Center’s mission is to touch lives through the art of puppetry. To that end it aims to develop and explore the art form; provide memorable artistic experiences; unlock the imagination; inspire every generation; and support the artists and staff behind the puppets. All programs for school-age children are designed to support state or national curriculum standards. In order to ensure the accessibility of activities, the Center strives to secure funding from private and public sources so it can maintain a sliding scale admission policy and offer free or reduced-price admissions to ticketed programs to underserved and special needs audiences. Based on its commitment to accessibility, the Center received a Lifetime Achievement Award from VSA arts of Georgia in 2005 for ticket donations to economically and specially challenged populations.

  • History:
  • The story of the Center for Puppetry Arts begins when a young puppeteer from Florida, Vincent Anthony, began touring with the New York-based Nicolo Marionettes. By 1966, he was ready for a smaller community where he could make a difference and pursue his idea of a puppetry center. He decided to call Atlanta home and co-created Vagabond Marionettes, a touring puppetry troupe. In 1978, Anthony found a permanent home for his vision in the former Spring Street Elementary School. On September 23rd, 1978, Kermit the Frog, with his creator Jim Henson, cut the ribbon to open the Center for Puppetry Arts. That season, the Center presented shows for adults and families, mounted an exhibition of puppets, and hosted community-based workshops and activities. While the offerings have grown, the format of performance, museum, and education has continued successfully for 33 years. Today, the Center’s Midtown Atlanta location includes a 345-seat Mainstage Theater, 170-seat Downstairs Theater, Rehearsal Hall, Atrium, Museum, Special Exhibit Gallery, Museum Store, library, three workshop rooms, two Distance Learning studios, multi-purpose room, offices, and scene shop.

    The Performance Program presents approximately 700 performances each season for family, teen, and adult audiences. Encompassing both new works and adaptations of classic stories in a variety of puppetry styles, the shows are performed by the CPA’s own company and by guest artists from around the country and the world. The Center’s Museum allows visitors to learn more about their own cultural interests and heritages by learning about puppetry around the world. The permanent exhibit, Puppets: The Power of Wonder, provides visitors with an interactive puppetry experience. The Education Program offers over 1,000 workshops each year for children and adults. Workshops taught after each family performance allow participants to make a puppet relating to the show. Outreach workshops are offered at schools and organizations throughout metro Atlanta. Using two-way interactive videoconferencing and webinar technology, the Distance Learning program has broadcast workshops to schools, libraries, and other organizations in 48 states and four other countries.

    Overall, children and youth comprise 71% of the Center's audience. Through the Field Trips Sponsorship Program, the Center annually offers around 70,000 free or reduced-price tickets to groups that serve underserved children, so all children can have access to quality arts and arts-infused education.

    Today, the Center is the largest U.S. nonprofit organization dedicated to puppetry. Throughout the years, it has been a leading voice in the field and has hosted numerous conferences and festivals. In addition, the Center has been acclaimed locally and nationally. In January 2009, Distance Learning was one of just four recipients of a Jim Henson Honor from The Jim Henson Company. Distance Learning also led the Center to being named a 2008 Tech Awards Laureate, one of 25 global innovators recognized by The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, CA for applying technology to benefit humanity. In 2000, the Center received an award from the highly respected Ford Foundation as one of only 28 arts organizations across the country recognized for managerial excellence and programmatic innovation.

    In 2007, Jim Henson’s family selected the Center as the proposed destination for their definitive collection honoring his legacy. Newsweek has called the Center “one of the most exciting companies in American theater.” has twice named the Center one of the top ten children’s museums in the nation. The Center was the only theater group chosen by the Cultural Olympiad of the Atlanta Olympics to participate in all four years of its arts festival program. Furthermore, the Center has received a record twelve Citations of Excellence (the highest honor for puppetry in the United States) from UNIMA-USA, the U.S. branch of Union Internationale de la Marionnette, the international puppetry organization.

  • Year established:1977
  • Endowment:Unknown


  • Executive / Trustee board size:32
  • Advisory board size:12
  • Staff size:


  • Organization type:Grantseeker
  • Country of registration:United States
  • Tax Determination Letter:Received Determination Letter
  • IRS Section:501(c)(3)
  • IRS Subsection:509(a)(1)
  • Tax ID:58-1275610

Other Organization Web

IRS Business Master File Information

  • EIN:581275610
  • Sort (Secondary) Name:
  • Care Of Name:
  • Organization Address:1404 SPRING ST NW
  • Organization City:ATLANTA
  • Organization State:GA
  • Organization Zip:30309-2820
  • Group Exemption Number:0000
  • Subsection Code:03
  • Classification Code(s):1, 2
  • Subsection/Classification Desc.:Charitable Organization, Educational Organization
  • Affiliation Code:3
  • Ruling Date:May, 1977
  • Deductibility Code:1
  • Foundation Code:15
  • Foundation Code Desc.:Organization which receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public 170(b)(1)(A)(vi)
  • Activity Code(s):090
  • Activity Code Desc.(s):Cultural performances
  • Organization Code:1 (Corporation)
  • Exempt Org. Status Code:01 (Unconditional Exemption)
  • Tax Period:June, 2016
  • Filing Requirement Category:01 (990 (all other) or 990EZ return)
  • Accounting Period:June
  • NTEE Code:A600
  • Asset Amount:$20,854,401
  • Asset Code:8 ($10,000,000 - $49,999,999)
  • Income Amount:$4,147,126
  • Income Code:6 ($1,000,000 - $4,999,999)
  • 990 Revenue Amount:$4,017,571
  • Last Updated:2/20/2018 11:15:54 pm

This information is directly from the IRS Exempt Organization Business Master File at Exempt Organizations Business Master File Extract. This information is not under the control of the Common Grant Application and is collected and compiled and can only be changed by the IRS.