The first of what is expected to be an annual Utah Children's Theatre Festival is scheduled Saturday, Aug. 1, on the north lawn of Willow Park.

Activities, beginning at 9 a.m. and continuing until 2 p.m., include plays performed by children representing towns throughout the state, plus a carnival and several workshops."Drama is a great way to boost children's self esteem and confidence," says Jessie Datwyler, festival director, who has been directing children's plays in nearby Nibley for many years.

Performances are scheduled until just before noon, followed by lunch, a carnival (with puppets, mask-making, costume construction and other theatrical games) and workshops.

The festival is meant for visitors of all ages, and families are invited to attend. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3.50 for children under 10.

Scheduled events include:

9:10: "The Pirates of Penzance," Nibley City

9:45: "The Three Billy Goats Gruff," Brigham Puppetry

9:55: "Why Things Happen in Threes," Unicorn Theatre, Logan

10:40: "The Reluctant Dragon," Brigham Puppetry

10:45: Presentation by a Cedar City group

11:10: "Cat Dance Fever," Brigham Puppetry

11:15: "The Bag of Gold," River Heights

11:30: Carnival and lunch

12:20: Workshops (Stunning Stage Tricks for Shallow Pockets, Special Effects with Makeup, Costuming on a Shoestring, Stage Combat for Peaceful People and Acting for Kids)

1:00: Dan Paulis, magician

2:15: awards ceremony