ACT I History

Our Beginning – 1980

From the beginning in 1980 ACT I of Benton County established a record of quality community theatre. Many individuals instrumental in establishing our traditions at the beginning are still active in the group today. Our opening production, You Can’t Take it With You, was helped along by the efforts of Linda Radcliffe, Ron and Nancy Baldwin, Colleen Stufflebeam, and Julie Zimmer, all of whom are still active in our theatre today. Others who began with us in those very early years include Dorothy (Bliss) Albert, Dottie Anthony, Lois Banse, Dean and Nancy Beckman, Marsh Berry, Dan and Lee Campbell, Orin Calhoun, Deb Fowler, Jim and Caroline Galvalas, Nancy Geiken, Marc Greenlee, Jim Hilliard, Theresa Juhl, Bob LaGrange, Sally Ludden, Judy Mitschelen, Keith and Becky Mossman, Elaine Olsen, Richard Paulus, Mary Prochaska, Anna Bess Rice, and Jill Roberts, many of whom continue to contribute to our productions.

Our 20th Anniversary – 2000

Our twentieth anniversary season was crowned by the opening of the Palace Theatre, our new permanent home. ACT I and the Palace Theatre have been a labor of love for all involved. After the growth seen during the past 20 years and the commitment ACT I and the Vinton community have made to the Palace Theatre, we can only say that the best is yet to come. Among the many debut performers in our twentieth season, we welcomed Sarah Allyn, Jeff Cumberlin, Elise Dickerson, Greg Douma, Kari (Nordli) Douma, Sue Freet, Shirale Hanson, Mary Horst, Nathan Horst, Lori Kerwin, Abby Larkin, Rachel Larkin, Sarah Larkin, Josie Rundlett, Teri Sellers, and Mary Ann Welchel.

Performance History

With over 30 years of staging plays of all types, and still going strong, ACT I of Benton County has produced an extensive history featuring quality entertainment performed by the area’s finest talent.

ACT I is committed to preserving its heritage and periodically we will be updating this area with photographs, comments, and news articles from the early days of ACT I through today. This information was primarily lovingly accumulated by longtime ACT I member, board member, and prolific director Steve Arnold.