I’m proud to know the “Mayor of Franklin Street,” and I call her my dear friend as well. She’s been mayor longer than John E. Piper, or even before we entered the Guinness Book of World Records by having two women as mayors. Au contraire, we have three: McMillan, Bowers and King.
Paige King has changed my life, my attitude and my mind. She lets me see the cup as half full. I was not so slowly turning into a drudge and could only think of all we lacked. Paige has helped me see the treasure we have and how we can move it forward and make it bigger and better. If one is allowed more than one best friend, Paige King is mine.
Her shop, Hodgepodge, puts me in mind of all the unique shops I haunt when I’m outside of Clarksville. Now I can joyfully haunt one here. She said that having a theatre helped seal her decision to settle in Clarksville, which is nice to say and even more to mean.
Her husband, Major Darren King, has enlightened me about the importance of the military to our community, as well as letting us know what value we give to all of those families separated by time and distance, who find a source of solace and maybe a chance to forget their fears and troubles for a moment.
She works tirelessly on our board and is working tirelessly for so many other civic and city boards.
Hodgepodge has been the best prop closet any theatre could want. We have had on loan watches, tables, chairs, rugs, linens and lamps. We once used an iron and brass double bed for A Streetcar Named Desire, which I’m sure seeing it on stage helped to sell it.
Darren came down to drill the boys in Red Badge of Courage so that their marching would be real and authentic.
Their son Haedyn is a ham. I say that with the best of intentions, for he brings to the stage a creative spirit and talent which is far beyond his years. Their daughter Hunter sorted out the auctioned art for the Roxy Gala and handled the financials like a pro. And Hannah, the youngest, is an avid theatregoer, organizing groups from Trinity Episcopal to attend the Roxy as part of their Wednesday night youth group.
Paige is my confidant, mentor and psychiatrist. I find myself moving a stack of beautiful things to make room to sit and share and talk and listen, which lightens my load while also lending an ear to a friend.
One evening on their way home, I overheard Darren, upon seeing me in the lobby, say to Paige, “There’s your friend.” With a glad heart, I called him on it and said, “I’m your friend, too.”
Now playing at the Roxy Regional Theatre
A Christmas Carol continues to beguile on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7pm and Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, with 2pm matinees on Saturday, December 11 and 18.
After the Thanksgiving rush is over, sit back and relax at the Roxy Regional Theatre with a rolicking holiday morsel that is sure to sweeten your taste buds and warm even the hardest of hearts. John McDonald, as Ebenezer Scrooge, meets the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Future while rediscovering the true meaning of the holiday in the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol, opening Friday, November 26th.
See you at the theatre!