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    Posted September 12, 2013

Labor Day Festivities in Kansas City

 

In Kansas City, Labor Day was a full day for participating members of Actors’ Equity Association, starting off bright and early with preparations for Kansas City’s annual Labor Day parade where AEA members, some of whom also represented SAG/AFTRA marched in solidarity with members of over 200 trade, labor, and affiliated business entities.  AEA members Carole Jo Bradley and Kathleen Warfel made signs honoring area Equity theatres, as well as smaller theatres who write special appearance contracts employing union actors. Balloons were inflated and prop “gifts” were wrapped, then piled onto the back of a 1972 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme convertible, donated by Pete Barrett. Pete’s dad, Peter F. Barrett, was the vice president of the fireman’s union, Chicago Local #7, and maintained boilers for the Chicago Public School System for 38 years. He frequently led the union down Michigan Avenue in Chicago’s Labor Day Parade, so in carrying on the family tradition, Pete honored not only us, but his father.  Also honoring members with their presence were supportive family members whose patience and sacrifice make possible our success.

Later that day, EMCs joined AEA members at the home of Kansas City liaison, Licia Watson, for sandwiches, lemonade, and homemade ice cream. Keith Reece and Christine Dotterweich Bial shared stage management duties, Keith using his vast knowledge to fix a missing stopper on the cooler holding the ice cream, and Christine using her organizational skills to coordinate an on-going clean up process, leaving Licia free to make introductions, answer questions, and make sure everyone had plenty to eat. Committee members Kathleen Warfel and Sarah LaBarr contributed cookies, along with member Paul Orwick and EMC Justin Speer who displayed THEIR ice cream making expertise. Kip Niven assisted in food preparation by helping to make the sandwiches and volunteering to eat the chicken salad that didn’t fit into the serving bowl. Along with welcoming new EMCs,  this event gave us an opportunity to celebrate along with Martin Buchanan as he prepares to turn Equity this fall and  to welcome Judy Simmons, a member relocating to Kansas City from the Washington D.C. area, to our family.


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