Jim Henson Celebration!

Jim Henson (1936-1990), the visionary artist and inventor of The Muppets was a student at Hyattsville’s Northwestern High School and nearby University of Maryland, College Park. He began developing prototypes for the Muppets while in high school and in 1955 debuted a nightly five-minute show on local cable station WRC-TV-4 called Sam and Friends. The show set the stage for Henson’s career and the eventual development of The Muppet Show

In 2016 the City of Hyattsville and The Jim Henson Legacy installed Jim Henson Courtyard in Hyattsville’s Driskell Park as a way to honor Henson’s local roots. The courtyard’s sculptural planters and accompanying benches were designed by artist William C. Culbertson to feature images of the Sam and Friends characters and inspirational quotes from Henson. 

Join us for celebration of Jim Henson on May 19 & 20!

May 19, 8 PM: Movie Night Sing Along!

Driskell Park, 3911 Hamilton Street

  • Sing-along to The Muppet Movie (1979). Rated G. Introduced by Heather Henson , daughter of Jim and Jane Henson and Chairperson of The Jim Henson Legacy
  • Free Popcorn!

May 20, 2 -5 PM: Jim Henson Ceremony

Jim Henson Courtyard in Driskell Park, 3911 Hamilton Street 

2:00 PM - Northwestern High School Student Performances

  • Northwestern Jazz Band
  • Northwestern Steel Pan Drum Band
  • Northwestern VPA Dancers
  • Combined Northwestern Concert Choir & College Park Youth Choir

2:30 PM - Remarks by City officials, The Jim Henson Legacy President Craig Shemin, and Heather Henson.

2 - 5 PM - Community activities

  • "Jim Henson: Life & Legacy" poster exhibit provided by The Jim Henson Legacy
  • Puppet-making crafts
  • Scavenger Hunt
  • DJ & Snacks!


The main entrance to Driskell Park will be closed for the event. Drivers can enter and park using the upper entrance near the Hamilton Park Pool, 3901 Hamilton Street.

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Photo credits: The Jim Henson LegacyThe Jim Henson Legacy Logo