Thursday, September 29, 2011


Long time supporter, Jim Henry, who has worked tirelessly in the background for the Princess cause, his son John, and brother-in-law David Arp, a 1964 graduate of Harriman High, visited the Princess restoration site Saturday afternoon.

John and Jim Henry, Kathy and David Arp, and Gary Baker back stage.
Taking an hour out prior to attending the Class of '64's 65th Birthday Party, the group walked through the sheet rock dust to see how things are progressing.  The most impressive part of the tour was seeing the "art deco" ceiling taking shape above the auditorium floor.

Tim Plemons took a few moments out to tell Jim, and his party, how well things were coming out, and how honored he was to be part of history.  The original painter was not fortunate enough to have a "blogger/historian" like me follow his progress as closely as Tim does!

Working from the engineering drawings, shown in the previous post, Tim is progressing on schedule and hopes to be painting the ticket booth entrances soon.  When this happens, along with the long awaited hanging of the new marquee, we will know our Princess is just about ready to receive a new generation of happy patrons!  I'm hearing mid-November, but restoration projects often hit pot holes along the way.  Let's cross our fingers that this does not happen to us.

Jim Henry is confident that the Princess will make a huge impact on Harriman, Roane and surrounding counties, as well as, the entire East Tennessee region.  The Princess will never be a "first run" commercial theater like before, but she will be a grand "theatre" showing classic movies, music shows and festivals, movie and art festivals, stage plays, and just a grand place to have meetings, dances, marriages, business shows, and other informative and educational events.

Most of all, children will once again have age appropriate things to do on Saturdays.  They too will begin to build memories of the Princess.  They will have a TV and radio station, and stage with/on which to learn the arts, communications, and media skills.  This complex of "hands-on-tools" will enhance their education experience at Roane State and area high schools.
David Arp, his wife and mom, along with Julian Ahler at the Princess.
David Arp, a long time friend and classmate of mine, was also impressed with the transition the Princess has made during the restoration.  He remembered his days of coming to the Princess, and "sneaking into the balcony", like most of us did!  Those are memories that only small-town America can offer!

I'm getting so excited!  I get more excited each time I visit the site, and especially when I'm there with someone my age, or older, and hear their memories, and see the excitement in their eyes as they see the fresh paint for the first time!

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