Library dinner theatre re-evaluated after small crowd

Theatre Didsbury kept the audience enthralled as they performed Anyone For Breakfast? at the Bentley Library Society’s dinner theatre fundraiser.

Theatre Didsbury kept the audience enthralled as they performed Anyone For Breakfast? at the Bentley Library Society’s dinner theatre fundraiser.

As the plot evolved the audience became immersed in this year’s Bentley Library Society dinner theatre play Anyone for Breakfast? as performed by the Theatre Didsbury troupe.

Society members, with the help of wonderful volunteers, had decorated and set up in the morning of April 16 in the Bentley Ag Centre. Volunteers pitched in all through the evening, and helped with the take down and clean up after wards.

The venue was good as usual. The play was very well performed with lots of twists and turns to hold the audience’ attention while at the same time providing lots of laughs and giggles and enjoyment throughout.

The ambience, built around a blue and silver color scheme, included flowers and candles on each table, and a bundle of books that could be taken home for a donation. Book donations of $76 were realized and donated directly to the local library.

Close to 150 enjoyed the catered meal.

But attendance was down. Members would like to have had closer to 200 in the audience like some of their past dinner theatres, but this year less than 130 tickets were sold. It is speculated that interest may have been down due to missing hosting a dinner theatre last year, or maybe the slight increase in ticket prices had an influence, or maybe the fact that it followed so closely on the heels of the Bentley Care Centre fundraiser that had been moved to just the week prior was a contributing factor.

A profit of just slightly over $800 was realized this year despite the rise in ticket prices. Both profit and attendance have been diminishing each year. The first one in 2004 saw 200 in attendance and made a profit of almost $3,000. This was the sixth dinner theatre fundraiser.

The costs of staging the event are projected to keep increasing, but meanwhile the society wants to keep the cost of tickets down. That has society members questioning whether they need a new kind of fundraiser or if they should continue with the dinner theatre concept.

But time moves on. Members are now gearing up for the Gardener’s Gala they are hosting June 5 in the Bentley community hall where there will be guest speakers and displays and demonstrations along with a silent auction and an afternoon tea with light refreshments served.

Raffle tickets on a queen size quilt hand-done by the Rimbey International Quilters are available from members.

Executive includes president Linda Schneider, vice president Colleen McNaught, secretary Janet Carlson, treasurer Arlene Tanasiuk, and publicity director Val Anderson. More members are being sought. Contact one of the executive if you would care to find out what the Bentley Library Society does and how you can help them support our local municipal library.