Dietrich Theater gears up for Tunkhannock Founder’s Day

Northeastern Pennsylvania is just full of natural and man-made attractions, from the beauty of the Susquehanna River to the Nicholson Bridge, to name a couple.

This September will be the 100th Anniversary Celebration of the Nicholson Bridge and as we approach that historic occasion, the Dietrich Theater will host an exhibit, The Nicholson Bridge: Past and Present. This installation will showcase many photographs of its construction as well as other artifacts and memorabilia to help viewers understand the significance of the world’s largest steel reinforced concrete railway bridge which is right here in our backyard.

Even though I was born and raised in Tunkhannock, I am only now starting to learn about its impressive history. If you would like to learn more about the Nicholson Bridge, be sure to visit the exhibit at the Dietrich, on display through August, and mark your calendars for Sunday, Aug. 16. At 3 p.m. on that day, Marion Sweet of the Nicholson Heritage Association will share with us at the Dietrich the story of the Nicholson Bridge — challenges of its construction and maintenance, how it impacted Nicholson residents and the famous people who have visited it.

Admission to the event is free. For reservations, call the theater at 570-996-1500.

Tunkhannock’s Founder’s Day, which will be held this Saturday, June 27, is great day to visit the Nicholson Bridge Exhibit at the Dietrich. And while you are there, be sure to stop by the theater’s greenspace for delicious strawberry shortcake. The strawberry shortcake recipe and fundraiser that the Tunkhannock Tree Association made famous at Founder’s Day was graciously given to the Dietrich. So enjoy this homemade treat. It should be guilt-free since all proceeds from shortcake sales will be used to support children’s programming at the Dietrich.

We also will have a basket raffle that day. Boy, are they beautiful. We have a “Let’s Party” basket, a basket of children’s books for boys and girls, a “Lucky Lotto” prize, “Pool Fun” and more. So take a chance and support a good cause.

Then at 7 p.m. on Founder’s Day night, join us at Tunkhannock’s Riverside Park for an evening of Shakespeare. Bring your friends and a picnic and see Gamut Theatre Group of Harrisburg perform a modern day version of “Hamlet” at the park’s pavilion.

The 90-minute performance is appropriate for adults as well as children ages 10 years old and up. After the show the actors will stay for a talk back session with the audience. It’s always so interesting, because the audience asks great questions such as what are the actors’ favorite roles, what was their first role, how do they prepare for stage combat scenes and more.

Admission to Shakespeare in the Park is free. We thank the Overlook Estate Foundation for sponsoring the event.

At 3 p.m. the following day, Sunday, June 28, Dr. Phillip Atteberry will give a multi-media presentation on the music of Irving Berlin. Learn about Berlin’s life, his prolific career as a composer, and his contributions to the great American songbook and culture. Included will be rare images of Berlin’s sheet music, extensive musical excerpts and photographs from the time. The presentation will be followed by a light reception.

Admission is free. We thank the Pennsylvania Humanities Council for sponsoring The Music of Irving Berlin. For reservations, call the theater. Tickets will also be available at the door.

As you can see, the Dietrich is so much more than the movies!