Miracle on stage

Preparations for Miracle Theatre's next production are well under way and although this is a comedy for adults, one of the biggest goals of the production is to serve the needs of local children.

As with past productions, this year's comedy Halfway There will provide a night of first-class professional theatre. And in keeping with the theatre's motto of giving to Prince George's worthy causes, Miracle Theatre will again donate all the proceeds to a Prince George charity. The money raised will help meet the priority needs of local children by launching the Children of Prince George Fund at the Prince George Community Foundation.

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The Wood Wheaton SuperCentre is the production sponsor for this year's play.

Miracle Theatre is under the direction of long-time theatre practitioners Anne Laughlin and Ted Price. The current play is the 74th professional production for Prince George audiences that they have directed, designed and/or produced over the past 25 years. Halfway There will mark their fourth play entirely donated to a local charity. Their past three fundraising productions have raised a combined total of just over $144,000.

Anne and Ted have set the goal of raising $55,335.58 with Halfway There. When asked about this odd number they explained: "this figure would bring Miracle Theatre's aggregate community donation to a milestone of $200,000 over the previous 38 months.

"We want everyone who buys a ticket to know that not only will they enjoy a fun night out, but they will be making a contribution that will give to this city's children year after year after year.

"The Prince George Community Foundation will use the money raised to create a new endowment fund. The money will be invested to provide interest and investment income every year. The principal in this fund will never be spent and the annual investment income will be available for granting each year in perpetuity. This means the funds raised by Halfway There will create a lasting legacy for children in Prince George."

A community foundation is a charitable organization created by and for a community of people. It is supported by local donors and governed by a board of private citizens who work toward the greater good of the citizens in the community.

The Prince George Community Foundation was founded in 1995 by committed leaders in our community who sought to establish a local philanthropic organization that could make an impact for our community through sustainable long-term investments. These visionaries established the Prince George Community Foundation as an independent, volunteer driven charitable organization that brings together people who care about their community. The foundation has grown to serve not only the community of Prince George but has partnered with other community foundations across northern BC to further support their efforts.

The PGCF manages over $12 million in endowed funds and has granted out over $2.1 million to local charities within the community. The Community Foundation grants funds to eligible charities twice per year during the months of March and October. Past projects funded include Quiet Santa Time for the Autism Society, ColdSnap for Kids, Literacy Matters through the Learning Difference Centre, St. Vincent De Paul Society and many more.

Anne and Ted said, "Miracle Theatre hopes that those attending the play will never have had so much fun supporting a worthy Prince George cause. Halfway There is a comedy about friends for life and it is full of laughter and surprise. As one theatre critic put it, 'It is filled with Maritime wit and wisdom. It has sugar and spice and everything nice - with a dash of Maritime salt.' You are sure to laugh from start to finish as the play concludes with a heart-warming message that puts friendship first.

"Playwright Norm Foster has been the most produced playwright in Canada every year for the past twenty years. His plays receive an average of one hundred and fifty productions annually. Foster pens plays that are known for their humour, accessibility and insight into the everyday tribulations of life."

Halfway There is the fifth Norm Foster comedy directed and produced for Prince George by Ted and Anne. Previous productions include The Melville Boys in 1997, The Foursome in 2000, The Love List in 2007 and Kiss the Sun, Kiss the Moon in 2011.

Performances are held at ArtSpace, above Books and Company, at 1685 3rd Ave. which Miracle Theatre transformed into a theatre space with tiered seating, full set and thrust stage.

The comedy runs 8 p.m. nightly, except Mondays, from Feb. 28 to March 20 with additional 2 p.m. Sunday matinees on March 3, 10, and 17. Tickets are $33 and available at Books and Company or can be ordered by phone by calling 250-563-6637.

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February birthdays that I know about: Diane MacLean, Helga Bertram, Judy Jackson, Lloyd Annis, Darlene Meyers, Cy Fortin, Bob Carrier, Judy Fisher, Amy Vander Ploeg, Ton Vander Ploeg, Sophie Chartrand, Kirsten Redding, Paul Steindl, Iris Frenkel, Verna Wright, Clarence Boudreau, Kathy Iselmoe, Joan McKay, Peter Osis, Aurela Kronebusch, Marlene Johnson, Roman Hildebrandt, Raymond Roch, Helen Dahl, Evelyn Porter, Delores Bircher, Ingrid Maack, Lillian Peter, Edna Stitt, Fred Dettling, Marlys Labonte, Anna Sciara, Rosetta Mauro, Mary Brizan, Betty Pearson, Susan Scott, Helen Wlasitz, Wendy Wlasitz, Edith McLaughlin, Rudy Wortman, Jo Nore, Judy Johnson, John Hepwood, Clifford Haiste, Ed Olichny, Luisa Botelho, Bob Dods, Joyce Antonyk, Neil Peterson, Denise Chenail, Anita Laurin, Louis Matte, Gilbert Stolz, Mel Pearson, James Stanyer, Jack Wagner, Luci Goodfellow, Russel Prouse, Doug Warren, Carol Ventress, Wanda Hauff, Corinne Collins, Rene Coburn, Kenneth Stephens, Barbara Carson, Audrey Kelly, Tena Sevigny, Tom Holgate, Doreen Kather, Bryan Erickson, Gordon Hall, Vicki Shanoss, Lory Denluck, and 91 years for Rosa Fornari.

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Anniversaries for February: 64 years for Keith and Marg McLachlan, 54 years for Ernie and Diana Myers, 54 years for Wayne and Jan Braaten, 54 years for Earl and Lorraine Turner, 41 years for Jim and Brenda Doucette, 25 years for Joe and Janice (Taylor) Anderson, and 17 years for Lino and me.

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