Kids are king in this "jungle"

From left to right: Patricia Romero, Alison Brewer and Chelle Robinson perform a scene from "The Jungle Book" during a dress rehearsal. The Missoula Children's Theatre presented the play at the base theater here July 14. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Elliott Sprehe)

From left to right: Patricia Romero, Alison Brewer and Chelle Robinson perform a scene from "The Jungle Book" during a dress rehearsal. The Missoula Children's Theatre presented the play at the base theater here July 14. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Elliott Sprehe)

The cast of "The Jungle Book" performs the final scene during a dress rehearsal. The Missoula Children's Theatre presented the play at the base theater here July 14. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Elliott Sprehe)

The cast of "The Jungle Book" performs the final scene during a dress rehearsal. The Missoula Children's Theatre presented the play at the base theater here July 14. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Elliott Sprehe)

From left to right: Rachel Pata, Patricia Romero, Alison Brewer and Gloria Trujillo perform a scene from "The Jungle Book" during a dress rehearsal. The Missoula Children's Theatre presented the play at the base theater here July 14.(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Elliott Sprehe)

From left to right: Rachel Pata, Patricia Romero, Alison Brewer and Gloria Trujillo perform a scene from "The Jungle Book" during a dress rehearsal. The Missoula Children's Theatre presented the play at the base theater here July 14.(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Elliott Sprehe)

CANNON AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- Lions and tigers aren't normally seen here, but that was just what happened Saturday as children from around base performed "The Jungle Book" at the base theater. 

The Missoula Children's Theatre, based in Missoula, Mont., presented the two performances Saturday afternoon at the base theater. 

The children's theater allows children entering first grade up to the 12th grade to participate in the play. 

The costumes and lighting were provided by the children's theater and Cannon just provided the stage and the kids, said Jeanie Preciado-Bushnell, base community center. 

"Some of the children are from the youth center and they're all base kids," said Mrs. Preciado-Bushnell. 

"I kind of got into plays after my first school play," said Jacob Hayden, who plays Akela. 

Approximately 40 kids participated in this year's play. A different one is chosen every year and is always based on children's stories or fairytales. 

Auditions began July 9 in a group format where all the children auditioned at the same time. 

The play is chosen by the Missoula Children's Theatre, said Mrs. Preciado-Bushnell. The experience is also a good way for the children to meet some new friends as well as some old ones. 

"My mom brought up to me because we're new here and she said it'd be a good way to get to know people," said Rachel Pata, who plays Tabaqui. 

"I met a girl from school in Germany. She was in my first grade class," said Rachael Brewer, also known as Mother Wolf in the play. 

The one hour play brought in more than 100 people to watch the children perform as tigers, wolves, and other animals.