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TIMES Gone-by

Written by Tammy Williams

Here we are in a new year with a new website and fresh events evolving on a weekly basis at the Times Theater! Welcome!

Exciting things are in the works for our supporters and community at large; this blog is one of those evolving features that we hope will become a regular destination for you.

With so much going on at the theater, it’s somewhat difficult to decide what we want to focus on first!

But, in ruminating the options, a question was posed… just why is this place so important, anyway? And it clearly is to so many of us! The outpouring of support has been an utter delight and absolute proof that this building is more than a collection of brick, mortar and peeling paint.

To some, however, those bricks that form the walls that captured many a Friday-night folly and Sunday matinee is indeed the motive for their interest; the architecture, the design and style! The artistic influences of the time can be seen in the original design of the marquee and stage where live performances will now come back more alive than ever! And perhaps a film or two, as well.

For others, we find the cultural influence such a venue could provide for the community is a well enough reason. Yet others may just like the idea of having an option for something novel in this relatively quiet town.

In thinking about why the Times has such a wide appeal, the thought that it is a lot about how the old theater made us feel at certain times in our lives. The emotions that it evokes from deep down in the shadowed spaces of our minds and our hearts. So, today, simply appeal to your memories, and the wistfulness of times gone by.

Join us…take a moment, close your eyes…reflect and go back… back to a simpler time…can you smell the popcorn? Do you hear the chatter of the old gang kicking down the sidewalk?

Conceivably, waiting in line… little buzzing clusters of friends…shifting from foot to foot with excitement while debating about which boxed or bagged treat you would spend your hard-earned allowance; your fingers regularly checking to make sure those hard-earned dollars are still forming the wadded-up lumps in your front pockets…” this pocket is for the ticket and this pocket is for a soda and my Junior Mints, no, maybe Whoppers…no…for popcorn!” Your group reviewing the week’s events at school and trying to keep up with the who did what while trying to decide which show it was going to be! Is it a showing of the latest Hitchcock thriller, Jaws, Grease or maybe it was Old Yeller?

As a young person, this may have been one of the first places you were allowed to be on your own; in charge of yourself asking and paying for that prized little tear-off ticket…”one please.”

Or, perhaps you donned a tutu, tap shoes or a leotard and in the spotlight for the first-time became a butterfly and performed a magical recital.

The experiences, loves, laughs and friendships…these rights of passage and social aspects of attending our little theater or any similar venue surely equal, if not outweigh, the actual entertainment value of whatever performances attended; priceless, indeed.

The number of these marquee clad time-capsules dwindled along with the drive-in cinema, downtown shops and the like as we moved away from “Main Street America.” But, now as the generations who really experienced the full scope of the height and the “fall” of these charmed institutions are approaching a certain age, we want to save them…bring them back. No, we can’t really relive those glory days, but we can do our best to provide some new experiences, laughs and friendships for future generations here within these time-tested brick walls.

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