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‘Secret Garden’ raises funds for nonprofit

Members of the cast of “The Secret Garden,” including Serenity Phemister, as Mary, at far right. (Jason Wheeler/Kudos)

Members of the cast of “The Secret Garden,” including Serenity Phemister, as Mary, at far right. (Jason Wheeler/Kudos)

One Stage Family Theater is putting on a few performances of “The Secret Garden” as a fundraiser for Central Arizona Animals Search and Rescue, according to director Tamee Niekamp.

The idea came when putting the show together and thinking how to help with a fundraiser, Niekamp said. this group, based in the Cottonwood area and headed by Mitzie Christian, has a group who goes out and finds lost animals, she said.

“Most of the time when animals are lost and they’re found, they have injuries or something has happened to them … and (Christian) pays the clinics and everybody to take care of the dogs,” Niekamp said. “Then they reunite the dogs with their owners.”

One Stage Family Theater is giving $1 per every ticket it sells and currently, they’ve sold 150 tickets, she said. There’s also raffles and whatever money they get from those will go to the agency as well, Niekamp said.

The show starts at 7 p.m. Friday Feb. 23 and at 4 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24. At Franklin Phonetic School, 6116 Highway 69. Tickets are $10 for adults and $6 for children and seniors and can be purchased by calling 928-499-8664 or at the door.

Niekamp said she wanted to put on “The Secret Garden” because people have been talking about it and it has a good story. It’s the first time many of the kids in the play have been on stage too, she said.

“A lot of the kids on stage haven’t done a play before. We wanted to bring families together,” Niekamp said. “We just wanted to bring a family type good feel to the area.”

Though it can be difficult getting them comfortable and having them understand they need to practice and know their lines and dances at home as well as at rehearsal, it’s fun seeing them upon stage, projecting and coming into their characters, she said.

It’s all for a good cause too and the organization is happy to help out another nonprofit, Niekamp said. While One Stage Family Theater is a nonprofit itself, it’s nice to help another nonprofit organization, she said.

“We hope to help them a couple more times during the year,” Niekamp said. “Just kind of give back to the community.”

For more information, call 928-499-8664.

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