Theater group breathes life into town hall

SWEA CITY – As the Patent Pending Players prepare to present “The Elves and the Shoemaker,” there is also excitement about the fresh take on the Community Hall, where the Patent Pending Players perform.

“The building was 125 years old last year,” said David Harner. “It’s been repainted and is looking about as nice as a 125-year-old building can look.”

“It’s more bright and colorful,” added Becky Cronk, director for the play. “It is going to be a nice contrast with the play … We have a lot of bright colors and fun outfits for costumes that really get the character’s personalities. Some of them will also have interesting make-up.”

“The Elves and the Shoremaker” is being peformed with permission from Pioneer Drama Service Inc. July 1-3. Play dates are at 7 p.m. July 1-3, with a special 4 p.m. matinee on July 3, at the Community Hall at the intersection of Highway 9 and P20 between Armstrong and Swea City.

“The Elves and the Shoemakter” play is an upbeat retelling of an old favorite, filled with wacky characters, clever dialouge, and a gentle message about the nature of kindness.

“There are a few different characters to give the play a modern twist,” Cronk said. “We have 19 students participating. The two main characters are played by Andrew Shiltz and Sarah Ingalls, who play the shoemaker and his wife. We have kids participating from Bancroft, Armstrong, Swea City and Fenton.”

Cronk, a 2013 North Union graduate, is studying agriculture education at South Dakota State Univeristy, but is back in the area for the summer.

“This is the first time I’ve directed,” Cronk said. “I performed in Patent Pending Players when I was a kid, and as I got older, I helped out more. When I came back from college, I was asked if I wanted to direct.”

Tickets are $5, and advance tickets are available from cast members or by calling (515) 272-4835. A limited amount of tickets are available at the door.

“We’re looking forward to seeing a lot of people come out,” Cronk said. “We’d like to see everyone come out and support us.”