Fluffed and stuffed: build a bear program is a success

Dec 30, 2022

MARION— Polyester filling and unstuffed animals were scattered across the tables of the Elizabeth Taber Library during their build-a-bear program on Friday, Dec. 30. 

“It’s hard work building a bear,” said library program director Elizabeth Sherry as she stuffed fluffy filling into a limp snow leopard. Sherry explained that getting stuffing down to the paws of the animals was the most difficult part of the process.

Monkeys, turtles, dogs and bears were only a few of the possible new friends that kids could choose from. 

The materials for this program were provided by Noah’s Ark Workshops, a company that provides stuffed animal-making kits to libraries and other organizations. 

According to Sherry this was the third build-a-bear workshop hosted by the library. 

“The summer one was so popular, we wanted to give other kids a chance to participate,” she said. 

Bear builders were encouraged to select an animal to fill with stuffing and give them a name.

Stripes the snow leopard came to life right before creator Beatrix Apperson’s eyes.

“He likes to travel to faraway places,” Apperson said as she searched for more filling to stuff Stripe’s paws. 

According to Apperson, Stripes’s favorite colors are black and white like his stripes.

“He likes going to the moon and he can jump anywhere, he can jump to Chicago,” she said. 

Apperson placed a rainbow star where Stripes’s heart is to help him “come to life.”

“His favorite food is peanut butter,” she explained. “He eats the whole jar and claims that he doesn’t get sick but his tummy hurts at night.”

According to Sherry, the build a bear workshop is meant to provide hands-on and interactive learning experiences— but also fun.

“This is one last holiday treat,” she said.