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Citizen's View: Buy a brick and help Lakewood share the arts with more people

Is Auntie Mame buying a brick for the Lakewood Center for the Arts? Given her whacky, eccentric personality, she probably would have bought enough bricks to cover Lakewood’s entire cement walkway.

Obviously, Mame isn’t buying bricks. But the Hale family did. Hudson Hale played Mame’s nephew Patrick in Lakewood Center’s production of “Mame.”

Hale says he dedicated his performance to the memory of his great-grandparents and his late grandfather, Richard Hale, all three of whom had a background in music and theater. This was not Hale’s first stage appearance. He played Michael Darling in “Peter Pan” and Aladdin in “The Arabian Nights” at Oregon Episcopal School.

Having a brick engraved with the name of a child, parent, grandparent or great-grandparent is just one example of how a loved one can be honored with a commemorative brick purchase. Another idea might be to engrave something related to “Mame” — a favorite song, favorite character or favorite line. The engraving could be related to any theatrical performance that resonates with the purchaser. A couple’s theme song, such as “I Just Called to Say I Love You,” “Unforgettable” or “You Are My Sunshine,” could be engraved on a brick.

Other engravings might be “Break a Leg,” Forever Friends” or “I Sing for You.” The sky is the limit. Think outside the box. Use a quotation that has special meaning or a loved one’s nickname; an emotional sentiment; a movie or song title; a memorable event; favorite saying or line from a movie, play or musical; or maybe the memory of a special talent or skill. The world of music could also provide inspiration.

Proceeds from the sale of the commemorative bricks will go toward the new Artist Training Facility. The new facility will mean Lakewood Center can offer more classes in theater, music and dance to students like Hudson Hale.

Lakewood Center currently offers between 30-40 classes and workshops for everyone from preschoolers to adults. A few of the offerings include two summer theater camps for 90-100 students who perform for 300-500 people on the Headlee Mainstage; an acting for film/TV class for 50 young students taught by Sandra Peabody, who has been at Lakewood for 15 years; a creative dramatics class, which attracts about 75 students during the year; and the Community Arts Pre-School, which offers four different classes five days a week, reaching about 150 kids weekly.

Join the Hale family and many others in purchasing a brick for the new Artist Training Facility. Bricks cost $200 and are 100 percent tax-deductible. For details, contact Lakewood Center at 503-635-6338, go online to www.Lakewood-center.org or pick up a brochure at the center’s box office, 368 S. State St.

Nancy Dunis is a Lake Oswego resident and a Lakewood Center Associates board member.

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