With a cast of about 30 and an audience of around 100, the Saline Area Players kicked off their latest offering, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” on Thursday night. As usual, the play was held at Fifth Corner, 211 Willis Road.
Performances will continue Friday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 1 and 3 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. Admission is $5.00
The funny and endearing play is about a mother, Grace Bradley, who reluctantly accepts the role of director for the church Christmas pageant when the woman who has done it for years becomes indisposed. Little did she know that the Herdmans, a rowdy family of six children known for smoking, drinking, swearing and bullying would end up in the lead roles.
In the rehearsals, Mrs. Bradley discovers that the Herdmans had never heard the Christmas story before. Somehow it takes on new and more poignant meaning when seen through their eyes.
The rehearsals continue to be plagued with wild and hilarious interruptions, such as when ladies in the kitchen call the fire department after they saw smoke coming from the bathroom. The smoke was from Imogene Herdman smoking a cigar dressed as the Virgin Mary.
Everyone in the church is terrified that the pageant will be a disaster and many try to convince Mrs. Bradley to cancel it. But Mrs. Bradley is determined to make this the best Christmas pageant ever.
When the big evening comes, there is record attendance. Everyone is anxious to see what mischief the Herdmans will do.
What happens is a beyond their expectations.
The cast includes: Salenna Alauddin, Maureen Blake, Ayden Burton, Lucy Dineen, Madeline Dineen, Michael Dineen, John Paul Gregor, Benedict Gregor, Rich Hamann, Tommy Hamann, Annie Jenkins, Sarah Knechtel, Charissa Kofahl, Mackenna Kofahl, Rebekah Kojiro, Kevin Myers, Maddie Nishioka, Miranda Patterson, Caleb Penny, Joseph Sauter, Megan Sauter, Katelyn Stevens, Kelly Wade, Hanaan Yousef and Amelia Yunker.