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Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
  • Gov. Markell visits Smyrna Opera House

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  • The Smyrna Opera House received a visit from Gov. Jack Markell Thursday during his tour of the cultural art gems in Delaware.
    Gov. Markell made 12 stops during the tour to check out the best of what the Delaware arts community has to offer. These stops included the First State Academy of Dance in Milford, the Nanticoke Indian Museum in Millsboro, the Smyrna Opera House and the Delaware College of Art and Design.
    His time at the Opera House included a look at the auditorium and the art gallery, which currently holds a private art show.
    Several town residents and local officials stopped by for the visit including Smyrna resident Leora Briggs Hansa, who had never been to the Opera House before; she moved here from Newark over four years ago and actually went to high school with Gov. Markell.
    "I've been wanting to come here forever," she said. "It is amazing. It's so beautiful, I'm very impressed."
    During Gov. Markell's visit, he even agreed to buy three commemorative bricks for the walkway leading to the entrance aka the "Patrons Pathway" of the Opera House. Smyrna-Clayton Heritage Association Board President Judy McKinney-Cherry said the Opera House is selling the engravable bricks for $100 as part of the Opera House celebrating their 10th anniversary of the restoration of the historic venue. There was a fire in 1948 that nearly destroyed it.
    The bricks can be engraved with messages, family names or memorial tributes. Roughly 80 bricks have been sold thus far.
    Email Jennifer Dailey at jennifer.dailey@doverpost.com.

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