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A Historical Visit at the Spring Lake Community House Block Party

July 4th, 2023, will mark the official 100th Birthday of the Spring Lake Community House.

There will be a special guest attending the old-fashioned Block Party on that day. The building and land it was built on were donated to the “people of Spring Lake and vicinity” by Oliver Huff Brown, the mayor of Spring Lake. He was an extraordinarily successful businessman and philanthropist.

While preparing to commemorate the special milestone, Spring Lake Historical Society member Bonnie DuBois did a great deal of research into Mr. Brown’s history. It was her hope to have someone deliver his story from the first person’s perspective. She reached out to Pat Barry, longtime Director of the Community House and Theatre, to recruit an actor who would fit the role of Mr. Brown to tell his story in person.

Mr. Brown’s portrait hangs over the fireplace in the Brown Room of the Community House. It was important that the actor who would play him have the same demeanor and kind facial expression. Pat knew exactly who to recruit; Bill Reinhard, a wonderful friend of the Spring Lake Theatre since he played Randolph McAfee in Bye Bye Birdie in 1976. He took the script home to read and edit to make it Mr. Brown’s own, added touches of Scottish humor and the result is wonderful.

Mr. Brown will be entertaining guests in the Brown Room on July 4th during the Birthday Block Party at the Spring Lake Community House. Attendance is limited to two performances. Guests may register at the reception desk of the Theatre on July 4th.

The 100th Anniversary Block Party is open to all! Find more info or sign up for the Parades here.

Bill Reinhard as O. H. Brown in front of the Spring Lake Community House

Photo Credits: Ella Fischer

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