Arts Council prepares for southern-fried comedy

Last updated: June 14. 2014 5:52PM - 448 Views

The villainous Horton Smedley (Adam Roades) plots to seduce the naive Aura-Lee Culpepper (Randalyn Minyard).
The villainous Horton Smedley (Adam Roades) plots to seduce the naive Aura-Lee Culpepper (Randalyn Minyard).
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Join the Culpepper family at the Magnolia Plantation turned Inn in “To Know Her Is to Love Her” or “The Fairest Flower of the South” presented by the Adams County Arts Council. The play runs from Thursday, June 12 through Saturday, June 14 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, June 15 at 2:30 p.m. at the Oliver School gymnasium on Wheat Ridge Road.

Set in the South in 1968,”The Fairest Flower in the South” is a one-set, two act comedy centered on a former Southern plantation. Col. Rutherford Culpepper (Kris Blanton) thinks the Civil War hasn’t ended and leads imaginary men in battle against encroaching Yankees, while his daughter Aura-Lee Culpepper (Randalyn Minyard) does her best to keep Magnolia Plantation financially afloat. With the help of her servants, Aura-Lee comes up with the idea of turning the plantation into the Magnolia Inn.

The wealthy Mrs. Mason-Dixon (Shirley Manley) and her son Beauregard Mason-Dixon (Levi Grooms) stop by the Magnolia Inn during their river boat journey, and the young Beauregard and Aura-Lee fall in love first sight. The treacherous Horton Smedley (Adam Roades) arrives soon after with his carpet bag, after being thrown off of a river boat for cheating at cards, and plots to seduce Aura-Lee. However, his plans are complicated by the fact that he shot Beauregard’s friend in the back during a recent duel.

The play quickly turns into hilarity as Horton’s many plots start to get tangled, and Mrs. Mason-Dixon starts to reconsider the idea of her son courting Aura-Lee. A great deal of mustache-twirling on the part of Horton Smedley ensues. All the while Colonel Rutherford defends everyone from imaginary Yankee soldiers as he enjoys his afternoon mint juleps.

Additional cast members include Paulette Roberts, playing the servant Hallie; the servant Dora played by Angel McIlwaine; Kaylie Humphrey, playing Lindy-Lou Van Cleve; and the Mason-Dixon’s french servant Evetter being played by Jessica Huxmann.

An entr’acte will be given during the intermission with Gary McClellan and Betsy Miskell performing a comedic piece, followed by Scott Amen singing while accompanied by pianist Matthew Greene.

The play is directed by Betsy Miskell. The furniture used in the play is provided by The Panhandler in West Union, and the fireplace and stairwell were loaned to the Adams County Arts Council by the Maysville Players.

Call Bonnie Harover at Mosier Furniture (937) 544-2711 for tickets. First come; first served. For additional information call Betsy Miskell at (937) 502-3385 or Mike Roberts at (937) 544-2363.

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