The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

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July 15, 2014

TWV to host ‘Pay What You Wish Wednesdays’

Theatre West Virginia is offering “Pay What You Wish Wednesdays,” a two-fold way to give back to the community.  

During each Wednesday performance in July of “Hatfields and McCoys” at Cliffside Amphitheatre, attendees are invited to “pay what you wish” and half of the night’s proceeds will benefit a local charitable organization.

General Manager Scott Hill said this is a new concept this year for Act II.

“We don’t want finances to stand in the way or impede anyone in our area from seeing theater, and this is a way the theater can give back to the community, which has given so much to help us this season,” Hill said.

The 54th season is one that many feared would never happen, as the theater closed for several months, but Hill is happy to report nearly 600 attendees on Friday’s opening night and over 400 Saturday.

“We’ve already seen guests from 14 states and three countries this weekend alone.”

Proceeds on July 16 will be shared with Just For Kids Inc., a nationally accredited Child Advocacy Center serving Raleigh, Fayette and Wyoming counties.

Just For Kids works with local law enforcement, Child Protective Services and the prosecutor’s office to support children traumatized by sexual abuse, according to jfkwv.com.

The second nonprofit, Hospice of Southern West Virginia, will benefit from half of TWV’s proceeds July 23.

Hospice of Southern West Virginia exists to serve the needs of individuals suffering from life-limiting illnesses and the individuals caring for them, according to hospiceofsouthernwv.com.

“We’re excited about it,” public relations director Josh Jones said. “We’re fans of Theatre West Virginia. It’s a staple in our community.”

Jones said he is thankful TWV has included Hospice in “Pay What You Wish Wednesdays” because his organization simply couldn’t do what it does without support from the community.

“The money will go toward serving the over 850 patients we serve each year. We’re excited and we hope to have a lot of people there that night.”

The final “Pay What You Wish Wednesday” will be held July 30 and proceeds will go toward helping animals find “furever” homes through the Humane Society of Raleigh County.

“With TWV’s long-standing history of entertainment, education and enrichment in our community, we are honored that they have chosen the HSRC as one of the beneficiaries,” said Suzan Loving, a member of the board of directors.

She said this is a great way for TWV to show its commitment to support the community that supports them.

“The HSRC is also very dependent on our community. Not only the monetary donations, which are always, always needed, but the food and supplies that are donated that help to keep the shelter running. Not to mention the amazing volunteers who give their time at the shelter helping out, by fostering animals in their own homes, by transporting animals to rescue.”

Loving said the shelter could not exist without the support the community gives, and July 30 will be a wonderful opportunity for the HSRC to spread the word about the shelter’s mission — “We are very grateful for the opportunity.”

To see furry friends in need of a home or to learn more, visit hsrcwv.org.

Billy Ed Wheeler’s “Hatfields and McCoys” has been a summer staple of Theatre West Virginia since 1970, telling the story of West Virginia’s most famous feud, but Hill noted, “While the show is about the famous feud, it is also a story about love, redemption and second chances.”

“Pay What You Wish” tickets can be purchased at the Cliffside Amphitheatre at Grandview National Park in Beaver on the evening of the performances.

Music begins at 7 p.m. and the show will begin immediately after the singing of the National Anthem by Patricia Lynn Hobbs at 8 p.m.

The first 150 guests into the gate Thursday night will receive a free vintage Theatre West Virginia T-shirt.

For more information, or to purchase tickets on other nights, visit www.theatrewestvirginia.com or call 304-256-6800.

— E-mail: wholdren@register-herald.com

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