Night of Chocolate Features Dinner Theatre

Thursday, November 29, 2012
Joseph Hargrave, who plays Huey Trump (Donald's nephew) in the dinner theatre event at the Night of Chocolate. Joseph is holding one of the door prizes, a 19-inch platter from the Spode Blue Room Collection, from Feather Your Nest in Piggott.

An evening of fine meals, delicious desserts and exciting entertainment will offer attendees a good time, but will also continue to support area students involved in the arts during the annual Night of Chocolate sponsored by the Clay County Arts Council beginning at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1 at the Rector Community Center. Tickets for the event are still available at $25 for members and $30 for non-members. Persons wanting addition information or to reserve tickets by the Nov. 28 deadline may call (870) 240-3014 or (870) 598-1004, visit Feather Your Nest in Piggott or contact CCAC members. Tickets are also available at the Rector Water Department and community center.

The event also features fantastic door prizes to be given away to some fortunate attendees. The door prizes include a unique two-tier, hand-decorated glass server, a 19-inch earthenware platter, first introduced in 1831, which is part of a signed and numbered collection of just 500, both of which are on display at Feather Your Nest, and a lovely hand-decorated glass vase, on display at the Northeast Arkansas Innovative Training Center. The prizes will be given away during the Night of Chocolate, and persons must be present to win.

"These are some of the most beautiful door prizes we've ever had," CCAC president Gail Burns said. "We're very excited to have these, and someone will be lucky to take these items home at the end of the evening."

Organizers believe the 2012 gala has the makings to be one of the most memorable events the Arts Council has held.

"The Night of Chocolate is one of our biggest events each year," CCAC president Gail Burns said. "Traditionally, it's one of our most popular events, and is always a lot of fun for everyone involved."

This year's Night of Chocolate adds something new to mix. In addition to the delicious meal, catered by The Traveling Whisk, and, of course, the satisfyingly sweet chocolate fountain and other desserts, the 2012 event will feature the CCAC's first community theater production, "Suspect Hollywood."

"We're very excited to have this production as part of our Night of Chocolate celebration," Burns said. "This will add another creative element to the Night of Chocolate that we think will be something people really enjoy. The Council is very excited about the play and the opportunity to do something like this in our communities."

"Suspect Hollywood" is described as a comedy/mystery with a group of entertaining characters swept up in a murder mystery, all while serving up amusing jabs at Hollywood and the celebrity status quo. The production centers upon those involved with the production of "Peril of the Prodigal Son," a new film in which the director has made numerous promises to those auditioning, as well as the financiers.

Cast members include: Jeff Beck as Cameron Stone, the director of the movie; Seth Morris as Arnold Bonebreaker, an action star of the 1980s and 1990s who enjoyed showing off his muscles and carrying big guns; Joseph Hargrave as Huey Trump, the major financial backer for the production company; Gerald Hartsfield as William Robinson, a successful comedian/actor who has been in several movies; Whitney Conley as Mary Ott, who is from an extremely wealthy family and dreams of being a movie star; Sydney Simmons as Rachel Witherspoon, the sister of Reese, who is desperate to get a leading part and be the star in her family; Robbie Wells as Shannon Walton, who has had small roles in a few movies, but thinks this will be her big break into movies; Nancy Holcomb as Kelly Wakefield, the casting director of this new movie and Rhonda Haney as Flash Taylor, the reporter who prides himself on being the first to get the news scoop.

The audience takes an active role in the production, with special recognition going to those who first deduce the culprit.

"The audience participation makes this play all the more entertaining," said cast member and director Whitney Conley. "It allows the audience to feel like they're part of the production, because they truly are."

The entertainment doesn't stop there, though. The evening will also feature performances by the popular Larry Norred Band.

"We would like to invite everyone to come to the Night of Chocolate for a wonderful evening," Burns said. "The support we receive helps us with our ongoing projects such as our scholarship program which benefits students in our communities. We have an outstanding lineup of events which will make this evening that's not to be missed."

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