‘Radio Hour’ to mark completion of first phase of Wayne restoration

“The River City Radio Hour” will give a special, extended performance on Aug. 21 to mark the completion of the first phase of the Wayne Theatre restoration.
The Wayne Theatre Alliance has arranged to close the 500 block of West Main Street and will move the “Radio Hour” from its usual space to a stage under the new Wayne Theatre marquee. The 7 p.m. “Radio Hour” will also incorporate the unveiling and lighting of the theatre’s historic front facade. At the conclusion of the lighting, the St. Clair Street Band will provide music for a street dance.

The August Celebration will feature a number of musical performers who have appeared in the last year. The St. Clair Street Band featuring Jim Harrington will bring combination of sounds that charmed and excited the June Radio Hour audiences. Jim Harrington is a member of a number of area bands. His skills on the accordion are appreciated by audiences in the US and Ireland. He will be joined by Buddy Thomas, Richard Adams, and Jason Clarke. Two of the Radio Hour’s favorite vocal performers, The Dreamland Quartet composed of Terry Terreson, Donald Dollins, Art Grahame, and Tom Pearce, and jazz songster Llyn Walker will also perform. As a special treat, Elvis impersonator Bob Lunger will make an appearance as the first “Star” of the new Wayne.

Comedy will be added to the evening with appearances by The Queen of Comedy, Marsha Howard and The King of the Groaners, Irv Beadles. Joining them will be Barbara Lawson as Olivia Rae Frock, choir director of the All Saints Church of Propitious Believers.

The final chapter of the summer serial, Nighthawk and Murder under the Big Top, completes the special River City Radio Hour. In the last chapter, Chester, aka The Nighthawk, was rescued from the lions’ cage only to find himself blindfolded, shackled and tied to a rotating target with an unknown assailant throwing knives at him.

For the last eight months, the Wayne Theatre Alliance has worked to return the front of the building to its 1926 style. The restoration has included returning the marquee to its original form and replacing the stained glass and the lanterns. A unique part of the restoration is the two urns that disappeared sometime in the 1930s. The final stroke of the restoration will be the replacement of the WAYNE name on the marquee. Representatives from the community will take part in the ceremony.

The special, extended August performance will take place in front of the Wayne theatre at 521 W. Main St. in Downtown Waynesboro. The Radio Hour is at 7:00 pm followed by the lighting of the Wayne and a street dance. Audiences are asked to bring their own seating.

“The River City Radio Hour” is a production of the Waynesboro Cultural Commission, Waynesboro Downtown Development, Inc. and The Wayne Theatre Alliance.

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