Cast named for Cemetery Tour

Ten area residents will portray people from Middletown’s past in an unusual fundraising event to be held Saturday, June 30 by the Historical Society of the Town of Middletown (HSM).

In the “Living History Tour of Margaretville Cemetery,” costumed portrayers will bring to life artists and farmers, lawyers and raftsmen, doctors and editors who now lie beneath the sod. Docents will lead visitors through the picturesque grounds to meet each subject and hear about their occupations, their lives and their loves. This promises to be a moving tribute to folks who have gone before, and to a community whose history is inscribed in us, the living.

The one-hour, evening tour, offered every 15 minutes between 6 and 8 p.m., begins with a welcome at the cemetery gate from The Undertaker, played by John Hartner.

Other players, and the people they will portray, are Fred Margulies and Beth Sherr as J. Francis and Adah Murphy, founders of the Pakatakan Arts Colony in Arkville; George Hendricks, as his great-great-grandfather, farmer George Hendricks; and John Bernhardt as doctor, politician, editor and Margaretville Village developer Orson Allaben.

Mike Fairbairn will play his great-uncle, Niles Fairbairn, famed outdoorsman and animal trainer; Joe Hewitt will portray legendary log raft steersman Erastus Clute; Kent Brown will appear as the beloved Margaretville Hospital founder Dr. Gordon Maurer; and Ken and Amy Taylor will play Ward and Margaret DeSilva, whose bright futures were cut short in the 1919 flu epidemic, leaving their two little girls orphaned.

Frank Canavan directs this event. Docents are Anne Sanford, Tina Greene, Gretchen Balcom, Vashti Snyder and Barbara Atkin.

Mark your calendars for this special evening (rain date July 1).

For more information on HSM events and activities, visit www.mtownhistory.org, or email history@catskill.net.

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