It's time to meet the Muppets - on display in Arkansas

Drawings, doodles, puppets and storyboards that show how the creative mind of Muppet-maker Jim Henson worked are part of an exhibit that opens its nationwide tour Friday at the Arkansas Arts Center in Little Rock.

Henson was a Mississippi native.

The exhibit includes a primitive drawing of Big Bird, labeled as "Nutty-Bird." Oscar the Grouch is sketched in a 1969 drawing, and the exhibit showcases Muppets, typically made of fleece or fur fabric and with polyurethane foam.

Josette Cole, registrar with the Smithsonian Institutional Traveling Exhibition Service, says the new exhibit is the most comprehensive Henson art show to date.

The exhibit runs through November 25th in Little Rock. It has stops planned into 2011 -- including one at the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson.