Another Opening ... Another Show!

Walks are resuming for me on Lobdell Pt. Road. When one looks close, there is much to be seen. 

But then, isn't that true in many avenues of Life?

While we thought Donna Russell's  - she's in the middle here - big projects this Winter were to help host the Island Picnic in Florida as well as devote much time to the Island Party held at Karly's Hall in April, she had something else on her mind.

One that included having attendees looking into the corners of their closets for vintage attire.

Donna even prevailed on some to provide "age appropriate" vehicles as lawn decor. This woman is thorough.


So with everything in place, people gave their rapt attention to an initial reading of Dear Rhoda, a play er, rather musical Donna based on a trunkful of letters. How she came into possession of that trunk and what it contained is indeed a story worth writing. Donna did just that. Fast forward many years and the fruits of her labors were realized. I won't say how many tears were shed as she saw it come to life but I think the word "buckets" was mentioned at some point.


 Did I say no one refuses this woman? Well, when a couple of hiccups occurred in May, the play went on. No matter that her male lead had to bow out and her female lead broke her arm, here is the cast and audience giving stand-in Tony Woodruff and Rylee Johnson (who gives new meaning to the word "cast") a special round of applause. 

Here are the people who helped Donna make Dear Rhoda happen. Donna's husband, Larry Russell, (right) was her support through this many year process. Long time Island Players director, Dave Ranney (left) read her draft, encouraged her, and spent  his Winter working with Donna to further develop the piece.


Dave thought it would add a bit of fun to include a group of young Flapper Girls and we found out how the term "Flapper" came to be.


What a team! Dave followed up on the structure, researched the history of the time and knew when to stay out of Donna's way.  Donna?  Well, she realized the treasure she had in the details, the moments those letters captured. What a gift she has given to Rhoda and Jerry.

Just like those trillium that struggle through the brambles and debris of the forest floor bringing Spring along, the letters have been recognized as elements that help us learn about those who came before us and managed their way through Life. The efforts to mount the production was supported by many in this Island community and comes as no surprise to those who know Washington Island. It will be fun to see what is next for  Dear Rhoda.

It reminds me of a box holder that just came in the mail from the School. For me, that last paragraph says so much. It's in the details, the conscious noticing and caring of the small things that can lead to making such a difference in the bigger picture one's's future.

"Standing Tall"

"Standing Tall"

Til next time...