More Than Movies: Volunteerism thrives at the Dietrich Theater

Margie Young - More Than Movies | April 17th, 2017 10:47 am

Why are the numbers 158 and 8,751 so important to the Dietrich Theater? Believe it or not, 158-plus volunteers gave 8,751 hours of their time and talent this last year.

What did they do for us? The list is so impressive! We have gift bag and mailing volunteers, Gala volunteers, birthday party organizers, maintenance volunteers, cultural programming volunteers. We even have a volunteer theater manager, a volunteer projectionist, concession volunteers and so many more who help to keep us thriving. Why do they do it?

Bob Boyce says it all when he calls the Dietrich “the happy place.” It just feels good to be working for an organization striving to serve the community with its movies and programs.

So, a grand thank you to all 158-plus very special volunteers.

Do you realize how lucky you are to live in a giving community such as our little corner of NEPA? We are so grateful for all of the donors who enable us to present free concerts, movies and other programs. Coming up, the Kintner family is generously sponsoring the movie “Space Jam” with free popcorn and soda at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 13. This yearly gift to the community is in memory of “Jeeterbug” and all are invited. Thank you to all of our sponsors.

Once in a while there is a “bump in the road.”

We had so hoped to produce the community theatre production of the play “George Washington Slept Here” at the end of this month. Due to complications that could not have been foreseen, we have to cancel that production. Sometimes art imitates life. In life, everything doesn’t go smoothly all the time. In this case, our plans did not work out the way we had hoped.

But we have so many stellar events coming up, one of them a first for us. We are inviting everyone to a free concert at 3 p.m. on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 14. A friend of the Dietrich, an anonymous donor, is sponsoring the Madison Strings Quartet, a New Jersey-based quartet along with French horn player Anthony Cecere. The quartet has been praised for its energetic and inventive performances.

Known for exploring Hispanic music from both sides of the Atlantic, the quartet makes its musical expression inviting, accessible and comfortable for all. This concert is fulfilling the Dietrich Theater’s mission to bring high quality cultural programming to all, and to eliminate barriers to its access.

Bringing in National Theatre Live to the Dietrich, and showing over 70 foreign and independent films a year, are some other ways we try to bring the best quality programming to our community.

So many have discovered National Theatre Live at the Dietrich Theatre. The next play that will be shown is “Rosencrantz and Gildenstern are Dead,” at 2 p.m. on Sundays, May 7 and 21, direct from London with Daniel Radcliffe. Yes, Daniel Radcliffe of Harry Potter fame. Come and watch these two minor characters in Shakespeare’s Hamlet stumble their way through the iconic play. This is the 50th anniversary of Tom Stoppard’s brilliant comedy.

Who doesn’t want to be motivated to adopt a healthier eating lifestyle? And who is the best motivator in our area? If you haven’t yet heard Donna LaBar’s reasons to change your habits, consider coming to her next seminar at the Dietrich Theater from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Saturday, May 13. “Simple. Natural. Healing, A Fresh Start” is the topic. Come and learn how to shop a new way, reading labels, understanding GMO’s, learn about good and bad oils, what needs to be organic and what does not.

I bet you will come away with at least one change in the way you shop and eat.

Spring has sprung in NEPA and the Dietrich Theater has sprung into a new season of movies and programs. Our staff of 29 and our 158-plus volunteers and a multitude of sponsors are striving to do all we can to bring you the best movies and programs that we can deliver.

We couldn’t do it with your support. Happy Spring to all!

Margie Young

More Than Movies

Reach the Abington Journal newsroom at 570-587-0038 or