Jones tribute night raises $7,100 for theatre

Andrew Wagstaff
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A total of $7,100 was raised for Ship's Company Theatre during a July 30 tribute event to Joan Jones. On hand for a cheque presentation on Wednesday were (from left) Donna Gallagher, theatre artistic producer Natasha MacLellan, Janice McLellan and Ashley McLellan.

PARRSBORO – It was a night to remember a special lady, in support of a special cause.

A fundraiser in memory of Joan Jones was held in support of Ship’s Company Theatre on July 30, and on Wednesday a cheque of $7,100 from the event was presented to Natasha MacLellan, the theatre’s artistic producer, by Jones’ daughter Janice McLellan, granddaughter Ashley McLellan, and friend Donna Gallagher.

Jones, longtime Main Street merchant and volunteer in Parrsboro, was a former board director of Ship’s Company Theatre and supporter of its work since its inception in 1984. She passed away unexpectedly in March.

“She thought Parrsboro was very lucky to have the caliber of theatre that Ship’s Company is, and she was a huge supporter,” said Janice. “All the time she was promoting and pushing, believing that the town benefited.”

It was with this in mind that the friends and family members of Jones put together last month’s fundraiser, which featured a lively auction, musical entertainment on the deck of the theatre, and a fun night of remembrance.

The event came together quickly but smoothly, according to Gallagher, who said artists and business people were quick to support it.

“All the stars were lined up,” she said. “As soon as we made a phone call, there was no question. We were just calling to make sure everyone knew about it, and they were asking, ‘What would you like?’”

The money raised will be put to good use by the theatre, which is always under pressure to fundraise, according to MacLellan, who described it an “an amazing gift.”

“It was a great night because it was for a woman who people respected and loved, plus it was a great idea and the timing was right,” she said. “It made me realize how much people loved the Ship, and how great a venue it is.”

Twitter: @ADNandrew

Geographic location: PARRSBORO

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