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“James and the Giant Peach,” a beloved children’s novel by Roald Dahl, will be on stage at the Garfield Center for the Arts this weekend — at 7 p.m. Aug. 9 and 3 p.m. Aug. 10. Both shows are free, but donations are encouraged. All ages are welcome.

The plot of the book and play centers on a young orphan boy who enters a gigantic, magical peach, and has a wild and surreal cross-world adventure with six magically-altered garden pests he meets.

This weekend’s shows are being produced by Playmakers’ campers. The annual, intensive Playmakers Summer Camp at the Garfield Center for the Arts is for youth ages 8 to 15. It runs five weeks, culminating in an original final production that includes all participants.

“James and the Giant Peach” involves approximately 40 people, including staff and junior counselors, four of whom have grown up in the Playmakers’ program themselves. This year’s playmakers’ team weaves together a creative set, music and fun performances to produce an enjoyable theater event for the entire family.

Now in its 11th year, Playmakers’ camp is dedicated to empowering youth through the use of games and activities designed to promote creative self-expression and enhance skills in the areas of communication, problem-solving, literacy and team-building.

The camp is directed by Lucia Foster and produced by the Garfield Center for the Arts. Funding for the summer camp and educational programming is provided by the Hedgelawn Foundation, the Town of Chestertown, the United Way of Kent County, Foundation for Tomorrow, University of MD Shore Health and several local donors invested in supporting creative youth development

Part of the Playmakers experience includes the Hedgelawn Performance Series, a multicultural performance series which exposes local youth to three different Fridays of educational entertainment. This year’s performers included Chester River Runoff, Noa Boaum (an Israeli storyteller) and Christylez Bacon (a hip-hop artist and human beat-box).

To learn more about Playmakers, visit the Garfield Center for the Arts, 210 High St., Chestertown, or www.garfieldcenter.org.

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