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Snapshot: Rebecca Inlow

by on May 01, 2017 2:44 PM

In 1917, Charles Hedding Rowland, a congressman and local celebrity at the time, established the Rowland Theatre in Philipsburg. The theater has gone through its ups and downs since then, but a century later, its doors are still open as it brings in movies, musical acts, and more.

A 100th birthday celebration for the theater will be held June 4. Rebecca Inlow has been sitting on the board of directors for two years, and she loves her time at the theater, especially researching its history.

“At one of my very first board meetings, we talked about the theater turning 100 in 2017, and so we thought we should do a book for the 100th anniversary. They all looked at me! At first I didn’t agree to do it because I didn’t know anything about the history of the theater, but then I thought, Why not! And that is where this journey started,” she says.

Since then, she has been collecting data and researching the history of Rowland Theatre, and she hopes to have the book go to press by the end of June and have it include the 100th anniversary celebration. She also is working on another big project that will be done close to the actual anniversary date in September.

“One of the biggest projects that we have been working on for the last couple of decades is replicating the 1917 marquee outside of the theater,” she says.

As a member of the board of directors, Inlow does most of the public relations work for the theater. However, since most people who work at the theater are volunteers, she helps out wherever help is needed. 

“Being [on the board] kind of fell in my lap and I jumped right in and ran. It’s been wonderful,” she says. “I love local history, and I didn’t think I realized how much I like researching. I also love fixing this place up. The beauty about this theater is that it has kept its historical look to it.”

Besides showing current movies similar to other theaters, the Rowland brings special shows and acts to Philipsburg. Upcoming this month, on May 20, Who Loves You? The Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons Tribute Show will be presented at the theater.

“Through the years we have had shows, but not on a regular basis. For the 100th anniversary, we want to have special shows and also movies to bring the theater back to its roots,” says Inlow.

The celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Rowland Theatre starts at 2 p.m. June 4, and the event is free to the public. There will be special guests, a documentary about the history of the theater, and a reception with plenty of birthday cake.

“We want it to be a fun thing to attend, and we would love to fill the theater,” Inlow says. “We want people to come and celebrate the history of this great place.”

For more information on the Rowland Theatre, visit rowlandtheatre.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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