A Look Into the History of Our Theatre Guild
The mission of the Punxsutawney Theatre Arts Guild shall be to promote, produce and sponsor live theater in the Punxsutawney area.
Spotlighting area talents of all ages continues to be the primary focus of the Punxsutawney Theatre Arts Guild Inc (PTAG).
Over the past decades, the all-volunteer group has performed more than 100 performances ranging from elaborate Broadway musicals to dramas, comedies, murder mysteries, variety revues, Shakespearean plays, and children's shows.
In addition, there have been dinner theaters, religious dramas for Good Friday services, and dozens of Touring Company appearances for civic, social, and church groups. A few shows have also been collaborations with the High School Music Department and Van Dyke and Company.
PTAG had its unofficial beginnings during the earliest years of the Groundhog Festival back in the mid-60s, when a group of theater enthusiasts pooled their talents to put on a stage show as part of each summer's schedule. Growing interest among performers and supporters led to the Guild's formal creation in 1975.
Thanks to the continuing cooperation of the Punxsutawney Area School Board, PTAG has been able to rent school facilities for the rehearsal and public performances of three shows each year. For almost as long, the troupe also has taken its summer attraction to the Verna Leith Sawmill Theater in Cook Forest.
PTAG is a member of the American Association of Community Theaters.
Making sure the show goes on, hard-working and creative directors, actors, technical crews, costumers, make-up people, and many unsung contributors working behind the scenes spend thousands of hours to keep community theater alive in Punxsutawney.
Plays usually entail budgets of $2,500 to $3,000 while the costs of musicals can range from $4,000 to $8,000. Income is derived from a core of faithful patrons, sponsors, and benefactors, as well as program advertisers, ticket sales, and PTAG's primary fund-raiser, the sale of Koeze Nuts and candies each fall.
Proud to be a part of Punxsutawney, the Guild supports the community through membership in the Chamber of Commerce, as well as financial donations supporting the Snowflake Lights, the Groundhog Festival, and the Fireman's Old Home Week.
Each year, PTAG makes numerous contributions to local benefit auctions and raffles. Through its Mollie Stahl Scholarship, the group has given more than $6,000 worth of educational grants to local high school graduates.
PTAG continues to generate the means to bring live theater to the area and make creative and administrative improvements to thrive.
Please note, throughout this site, that the Punxsutawney Theatre Arts Guild is also referred to as PTAG, the Guild, or Theatre Guild.
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