Art learning and making bring people together and nurture the power of communities to connect, shape, imagine, and transform the world.


Yard Dramas develops creative experiences designed in collaboration with participants to bridge connections, increase learning and grow ideas, pathways, and solutions.

Core Values

  • ARTISTIC EXCELLENCE Every human - from babies to revered elders - is an artist. Every household and business benefits from experiencing high-quality art learning and making programming.
  • LIFE-LONG LEARNING Yard Dramas is committed to arts education and creative life-long learning for all. We believe collaborative art learning and making positively impacts participants' economic, health, environmental, educational, and social lives. Art learning and making occur wherever the community meets - inside, outside, and online, in schools, homes, parks, markets, cafes, streets, and elsewhere.
  • OPPORTUNITY Every artist deserves the opportunity to work with a Professional Teaching Artist. Yard Dramas is accessible to everyone regardless of financial resources and circumstances and recognizes wealth, income, and privilege differences within our community.
  • NATURE AS A MODEL Nature is an artist, and there are countless benefits and opportunities to telling stories and creating art in nature with the community. Built on community garden principles, Yard Dramas catalyzes collaborative art projects, inspires a renewed interest in preserving and revitalizing Prince George's County's green spaces, and nurtures stewards of the natural environment of the Anacostia Watershed.
  • PROFESSIONALISM Historically, Teaching Artists have been undervalued despite their contributions to the community. Check out the Teaching Artist Guild's Pay Calculator. Your awareness of the professional challenges Teaching Artists face will move the field of teaching artistry forward and help our society recognize pay equity as a social justice issue.
Jennifer Ridgway Headshot

Owner: Jennifer Ridgway

I am a third-generation Prince George's County resident and Maryland native! Here is my scoop:
  • 30+ years as a Teaching Artist with a MFA in theatre for young people. I am an experienced creative journey facilitator who can cater to your unique needs, topics, interests, goals, and themes.
  • Trained and experienced performing artist with a BA in acting, plus decades of private voice coaching and dance lessons. I bring that training and experience to my Yard Dramas projects!
  • Annual background checks and ongoing training in specific populations, such as people with special needs, elderly, and LGBTQ+ populations, to create the safest and most welcoming environment for all of my participants.
  • Trained in social-emotional learning and critical literacy.
  • Experience in simultaneous Spanish interpretation, audio description, and open captioning.
  • Anacostia Watershed Steward and Climate Reality Leadership Corps Member and lifelong gardener.

Learn more about me and check out my personal blog, "The Playmaker's Treasure Chest."


In the early days of the pandemic, I was forced into unemployment as the world was forced to shelter in place. With 30 years as a professional Theatre Teaching Artist, I recognized how my artistry and skills to engage all ages with art learning and making experiences could serve the community. In April 2020, I began presenting drama sessions in my neighbors' yards to help young children overcome loneliness and enter into imaginary play.


Yard Dramas creates art experiences with the community to shape and transform the world. In our efforts to bridge

  • Share strategies with teens to optimize their potential as leaders and change-makers in their community.
  • Engage youth of all ages with arts integration to support social-emotional learning and core academic learning goals.
  • Enrich the lives of elders with storytelling and theatre-making.
  • Imagine solutions to issues seen in education and the environment.

What might participants experience?

Read the Yard Dramas social story to get an idea. Developed to support people with autism, everyone can benefit from reading our social story. Ask me about the Spanish version we recently developed! Learn more about Yard Dramas programs.

Take a trip back to August 2020...

Read what Yard Dramas participants, clients, and community partners are saying!

Let's stay connected!

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