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A Very Grateful Christmas

Even though 2020 has been a heartbreakingly difficult year, we have a great deal to be grateful for and we have many people to thank. When we closed our doors in mid-March, we had no idea exactly what the future held for the Spring Lake Community House and Theatre. It soon became clear that we would need to reach out to our friends for help to survive this first-in-our-lifetime pandemic.

We are overwhelmed by the generosity, kindness and unflinching support of the donors, neighbors and friends in our community as well as the families who entrusted us with their children, allowing them to continue to participate safely in the performing arts programs that have been an important part of their lives.

This year, we were able to transform the exterior of the nearly 100-year-old Community House into an outdoor stage for recitals, theatre workshop productions, concerts and, miraculously, our thirty-eighth annual production of Scrooge. None of this would have happened without the kindness, generosity, and talents of so many. Our entire creative staff and teachers worked tirelessly, especially Andrew Dagostino, our brilliant set and lighting designer. Theresa Miele, John Bongiovanni, and Jackie Drudy arranged all the logistics required to maintain a safe environment for outdoor classes and performances. Michael Caggiano oversaw management of our sound system which was a challenge. Our wonderful neighbors generously allowed us to close off their street for rehearsals and performances. Chief Ed Kerr and the Spring Lake Police Department took care of securing the space, and our talented group of actors breathed new life into the phrase “the show must go on.” We proved that it is possible to be heard as our actors sang their hearts out while wearing masks during our “Concert for Our Cause” to a fantastic audience who supported us at that event. Thanks to Dawn McDonough and the BID who sponsored the second annual Witches Paddle to benefit our Recovery Fund, all our parents and friends who supported the first annual Halloween-a thon, Mike Farragher, for a wonderful Irish(ish) afternoon in November, Sandy Denison and Susan Bielicki who were with us constantly supporting the everyday food and financial management that is so vital to our success. To Mayor Jennifer Naughton, Governor Murphy and Brian Wilton, the cast and crew of Scrooge for creating a Christmas miracle in 2020 - thank you. Most especially, thank you to Derek Hulse, our SCROOGE. His talent and professionalism are boundless. There are no words sufficient to thank him for breathing life into our dreams of Scrooge during these challenging times.

We are looking forward to a brand new year filled with hope that life will return to close to normal by spring. Merry, merry Christmas and a Happy, healthy New Year!

With a great deal of love and gratitude,

Patricia Barry, Executive Director

for the Board of Trustees

The Spring Lake Community House & Theatre

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