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Out & About: Supporters get sneak peek at Lamp Theatre diner | TribLIVE.com
Out & About

Out & About: Supporters get sneak peek at Lamp Theatre diner

Shirley McMarlin
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Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Casey Harper, Sr. (center) cuts the grand opening ribbon during the VIP ribbon-cutting and reception for the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard held at the Lamp Theatre in Irwin on Saturday evening, May 11, 2019.
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Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
(From left) Kenny Blake and the Gail Macioce Band provide musical entertainment during the VIP ribbon-cutting and reception for the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard held at the Lamp Theatre in Irwin on Saturday evening, May 11, 2019.
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Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
The Harper family (from left) Casey, Jr., Casey Sr., Cheryl and Cassandra, gather for a photo near the diner during the VIP ribbon-cutting and reception for the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard held at the Lamp Theatre in Irwin on Saturday evening, May 11, 2019.
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Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Members of the Harper Family Diner committee (from left) Marty Adams, Denise Bowen, Christina Gibbs and JC Gibbs gather for a photo during the VIP ribbon-cutting and reception for the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard held at the Lamp Theatre in Irwin on Saturday evening, May 11, 2019.
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Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
(From left) Mike Caralli, programming for the Lamp Theatre, joins board members, Mary Benko, treasurer, Terri Yurcisin, vice-president, and John Gdula, president, for a photo during the VIP ribbon-cutting and reception for the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard held at the Lamp Theatre in Irwin on Saturday evening, May 11, 2019.
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Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Members of the Harper Family Diner committee (from left), John Qualley, Linda Kovach, Robie Shoff and Rich Bryce gather for a photo during the VIP ribbon-cutting and reception for the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard held at the Lamp Theatre in Irwin on Saturday evening, May 11, 2019.

Supporters of Irwin’s Lamp Theatre have dubbed it “the little theater that could.”

The historic theater opened in 1937 as a movie house. After closing in 2005, it changed hands several times until the borough of Irwin bought it in 2013. With lots of volunteer help, it reopened as a live entertainment venue in 2015.

At a March 30 fundraising gala, board president John Gdula said shows drew 25,000 patrons in 2018. Soon, the downtown Irwin treasure will have another draw — the Harper Family Diner and Courtyard.

A private grand opening party was held May 11 to give special supporters a sneak preview of the vintage stainless steel diner. Naming rights were purchased by automobile dealer Casey Harper and his wife Cheryl Harper.

The VIP party guest list included major contributors Lucien Bove of Bove Engineering, representatives of First Energy Foundation, Denise Bowen of Junque Genius Studio, Mike and Denise Caralli, Robie Shoff of Only By Design and Chuck Shoff of Shoff Construction.

Others involved in the project include John Qualley and Mike Pochan, who arranged acquisition of the diner, Bill Elder, Christina Gibbs, J.C. Gibbs, Jim Simonetta, John Russo, Karen Glass, Linda Kovach, Marty Adams, Rich Bryce and Vince Merritt.

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Lifestyles | OutAndAbout
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