Little Puppettes dazzle at Dog Days

Charlie Connelly

Charlie Connelly, Staff Reporter

Every year the RB football program organizes a preseason event known as “Dog Days”, where the varsity squad scrimmages each other in preparation for the season opener the following week. On August 22, amongst all the hype and excitement for the upcoming season, the Puppettes put on its biannual show for the RB community. The Puppettes performed with the RB “Little Puppettes”, who are kids from the Riverside Brookfield area ranging from the ages of 5-11 who have the desire to train with the Puppettes for the week. At the end of the week, the girls put on a routine at the Friday night game.

Nicki Sabbatino, first year Puppettes sponsor and teacher in the Special Ed department at RB, could not have been more excited for her big Puppettes to work with the Little Puppettes. Having been a Puppette herself here at RB during her high school years, to be back working with the program, was something really special.

For most the event was standard, but for Sabbatino it was more of a homecoming than anything.

“Being able to host a little girls Pupettes is awesome. When I was a little girl, I did Little Pupettes here for football season. Bringing it back for a football game was somewhat sentimental. These little girls look up to the older ones and admire what they do. It is something that most of them won’t forget and look forward to,” Sabbatino said.

Working with a cluster of children with sights of putting on a cohesive show in three short days is no easy task, but to Sabbatino’s pleasure rehearsing was a non-issue.

Sabbatino said, “Practices went great! We were able to show the little girls somewhat of how we run practice. We start with a warm up. Then we had the girls play a game to help get them excited. When we went on to teaching the dance, the girls picked it up fast. Very impressed by each and every one of them. The older girls were paired up and they were really in charge of making sure their little one needed anything. It worked out great.”

Not only did Sabbatino appreciate the truly enjoyable experience that is the Little Puppettes performance, but so did team captain senior Grace Rasmussen. Rasmussen, having been in Puppettes for her first three years at RB couldn’t have been more honored to be named team captain, and stressed her gratitude after the performance.

“Working with the kids was so much fun,” said Rasmussen,” It can be hard to control a bunch of energetic kids, but in the end, I could tell they loved learning a routine and being able to perform live for their families.”

It cost $50 for the kids to participate, and all of the funds benefitted the Puppettes program, proving to be a great fundraiser but more importantly an exciting event for the entire community to be a part of and appreciate. The Little Puppettes will have another performance come basketball season. Until then the kids can have a chance to relish their accomplishments, and set their sights forward for yet another routine and experience to remember.