The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

July 26, 2013

Beckley’s Rocket boys Festival

‘Pie,’ ‘Rocket’ actor to attend

By Wendy Holdren
Register-Herald Reporter

— The Rocket Boys Festival has hosted all of the original Rocket Boys except Quentin Wilson, and although he still won’t be available for this year’s fest, the Hollywood actor who starred as him will be making an appearance.

Festival Director Scott Hill confirmed that Chris Owen, who played Quentin in “October Sky,” will attend this year’s festival, shaking hands and signing autographs. If you don’t know him as Quentin, you may recognize him from the “American Pie” movies as Sherman.

Hill said the festival is trying to bring in one actor each year from the movie, and last year Scott Miles, who played Homer’s older brother Jim in the film, attended the festival.

“We’re very excited to have Chris Owen this year,” Hill said.

With less than 70 days left until the festival weekend, Oct. 4-6, Hill and the volunteer crew are putting the finishing touches on the schedule of events.

The planning committee met Thursday for an update and Hill said that the West Virginia SpeakS Up event is shaping up nicely. They are continuing to receive confirmations from state and local leaders.

This speaker series will hopefully generate ideas on how to make West Virginia a better place.

Confirmed speakers include Homer Hickam, Roy Lee Cooke, Bobby Pruett, Don Nehlen, Bill Baker, Emmett Pugh and more. Rocket Boys Festival representatives will also be at Theatre West Virginia during the “Rocket Boys - The Musical” showings to talk to the attendees about the October festival.  

TWV General Manager Gayle Bowling said the cast, full of fresh faces this year, has been rehearsing for the past week.

She also noted that this year’s director, Carl Anthony Tramon, also helped write the play with Homer Hickam.

Performance dates are Aug. 15-25, except for Monday, Aug. 19. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 304-256-6800 or 1-800-666-9142. To stay up to date on the latest Rocket Boys Festival announcements, check out Twitter, Facebook and www.rocketboysfestival.com.

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