If it weren’t for the dozens of volunteers at The Kate, the show just would not go on. Since September 2009 when the cultural arts center opened in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, the crowd of folks helping out has been amazing and they deserved, and deserve some recognition. The Guild recognition ceremony will of course now be an annual event to be able to give those pats on the back that are so deserved. A big shout out to Kate Trustee, Pauline Kezer who so long ago got the Guild rolling.
At this year’s event there were some individuals honored that went above and beyond. Mind you these are all folks just volunteering but are making such a difference. You will never go to The Kate and not see some of the individuals guiding you to your seat, answering questions, giving tours, stuffing envelopes, I could go on and on and on.
Among the honorees, was Pat Schneider. Pat started the Boutique at The Kate, a wonderful alcove where you can purchase wonderful things concerning the theater and the iconic actress for which it is named, Katharine Hepburn. But thing sweren’t always so pretty, Pat first started selling items five years ago out of a storage room at the Town Hall before the theater opened. Initially there were t-shirts and hats. I remember buying a Kate sweatshirt in the early days out of her trunk. Boy have we grown since then. Pat takes such pride in her work and it shows. Also thanks to her wonderful volunteers who spend so many hours helping her. Three stand outs helping Pat were recognized as Patsy Flanagan, Corrine Ingellis and Maureen Prior.
In the category of Theater Volunteer which included time spent, parking cars, house managing, ushering, greeting and mailings, the three who worked the most hours were Bev Musgrove, Edie Riggio and Gerhard Krauland.
The big honor, Volunteer of the Year went to Sueing. She never stops and we joke she has a cot at the theater. She was, and is, willing to work every show.
Sueing is always smiling and is a joy to be around. Congrats, Sueing for being The Kate’s first ever Volunteer of the Year!
Actress Katharine Hepburn was given quite a birthday gift today, her own 44 cent U.S. Postal Stamp. Hepburn would have been 103 years old today.
The photo used on the stamp is from a publicity shot taken for her 1942 film, “Woman of The Year.”
The late 4-time Academy Award winning actress would have been 103 years old today.
The red-haired beauty became the 16th star to be honored in the U.S. Postal Service’s Legends of Hollywood stamp series.
The ceremony took place in her theater, the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center in Old Saybrook, Connecticut.
By my estimate, there were about 300 people in attendance.
On stage marking the occasion was emcee, actor, and Connecticut resident, Sam Waterston. Waterson was in a movie with Hepburn in her later life called “The Glass Menagerie.”
Waterston told me he loved working with her and that she took the responsibility of feeding the cast and crew while they were on location.
He also told me that while shooting the movie Hepburn said to him “you’re clock isn’t ticking.” She told him when your clock isn’t ticking you’re not full out in the acting mode, but when it is, you give the audience all you’ve got. Hepburn was always one to try to make people better, to push them to their limits, that wasn’t lost on Waterston.
Also on stage, British film director, Anthony Harvey. Harvey made four pictures with Hepburn including “The Glass Menagerie” and “Lion In Winter.” Harvey told me what a character Hepburn was, but that he had the time of his life with her over a 20-year friendship.
The Kate’s Executive Director, Chuck Still started out the ceremony welcoming the residents of Old Saybrook and thanking them for all of their ongoing support of the theater and how Hepburn loved the town of which she thought of as her paradise.
Hepburn’s long time cook, Nora Considine was also in attendance with her daughters and grand daughter. We talked about all the fun she had cooking for Kate in New York City and in Fenwick.
Hepburn’s brother-in-law, former West Hartford Mayor, Ellsworth Grant watched from the front row as his late famous sister-in-law got her due. Grant told me it was a wonderful event and that “Katy” would have loved it.
Members of the Old Saybrook Police Department got into the act as well, standing guard at the venue and also having their picture taken with Waterston, one of the stars of the TV show “Law and Order.”
This was a great day for The Kate, really put the theater on the map today, and the first of her stamps were sold and hand canceled right at the theater.
This stamp is a beauty, it’s taken from Hepburn’s 1942 film “Woman Of The Year.”
It will be unveiled on what would have been her 103rd birthday at the theater which carries her name in Old Saybrook, Connecticut.
This is so appropriate because Hepburn called the Fenwick section of Old Saybrook her paradise.
The Kate will host this first day issue ceremony.
At the 44-cent stamp unveiling will be Sam Waterston, who acted with Hepburn in the film “The Glass Menagerie,” and Anthony Harvey, who directed Hepburn in “The Lion in Winter.”
U.S. Postmaster General John E. Potter will have the honors of introducing the stamp to the world of the iconic 4-time Academy Award winner. The stamp is the 16th in the USPS’ “Legends of Hollywood” commemorative series.
Hepburn spent summers at her family home in the Fenwick section for most of her life, living there permanently later in life. She died in 2003 at age 96.
The ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. For more information, go to www.thekate.org or call 860-510-0473.