Dinner Theater Lovers Enjoy Great Food and Entertainment at Summersville Arena WV

What began with Summersville, WV Mayor Robert Shafer enjoying a play in Lewisburg has led to experiments with dinner theater at the Summersville Arena. August will see two productions, including one for children, and CVB Director Marianne Taylor is hoping this becomes a regular feature.  In 2013 the Greenbrier Valley Theatre brought its production of “Smoky Joe’s Cafe” to the Arena and attracted 326 people, an impressive opening night by any accounting. “We were hoping for 300,” says Taylor, “so we were quite pleased.” The Greenbrier Valley Theatre will be back in 2014 on Aug. 7 for the children’ production of “Stuart Little” and on Aug. 16 for “Stand By Your Man” (the Tammy Wynette story). The Greenbrier Valley Theatre has been active since 1966, when it began life in a tent. It moved into its permanent home in Lewisburg in 2000 and is now reaching out with its shows, something regional professional theaters often do.  Deanna Altizer and her husband Ken went to the production last year and were so taken with the overall experience that “I need three tables so far for the next one. We’re excited. That was one of the best events I’ve been to at the arena. The crowd was jolly, everybody was happy, the food was great, even the decor was beautiful. The performance itself was unreal.” The dinner theater setup at Summerville Arena features large round tables that seat six (groups of six or more can reserve whole tables) in front of the standard-sized stage. The adult production begins with dinner at 6:15 p.m. and the show at 7:30. The children’s dinner begins at 6 with the show at 7. Prices are $50 per person ($47 for seniors) for the adult show and $15 for adults and $10 for children for the children’ theater show. Adults can see the show without buying dinner for $28 and $25. The adult menu will feature two entrees, salad, two sides, homemade rolls and dessert. Children will eat chicken fingers, fries and drinks. Mayor Shafer says he is happy we were able to bring that kind of production to a rural community such as ours. “It’s normally something we’d have to travel to a larger locality to see. Overall, the production was excellent and we had a great time.” Taylor says there is some hope that this series will become a regular thing because “people here really enjoy the arts. We aren’t the stars in this, so I don’t know if you can call it our own. But the locals show up, in any case.”


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