For more than 40 years, one of our treasured pieces of furniture has been a ticket taker’s stand we rescued from the State Theatre in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania just as the wrecker’s ball obliterated the building. It was put to good use when our children were growing up and putting on productions on a regular basis. Tickets would be issued, collected and duly deposited in the tall chestnut stand with a marble top and slot fitted with brass.
As we moved from one city to another, a place was always found for the stand. But with the children grown and gone, it served no function save as a conversation piece. “Feel how smooth the wood is at waist height,” I’m fond of saying. “That silky patina’s from the ticket taker’s belt buckle.” We learned this fact from the theatre’s long-time janitor, who stopped by just as we were making our purchase.
It took eleven years of inn keeping in a theatre town and disposing of thousands of tickets our guests leave behind when they depart to re-commission the ticket stand. During the 2013 season, we encouraged guests to sign their tickets and deposit them. We’d then hold a drawing and the lucky winner would get one free night at the Inn.
Watch the video and see our granddaughter, Portland girl Ramona Runkel, draw the winning ticket. Congratulations go to the O’Flahertys of Davis, California!
Don’t forget to leave your tickets in the right place when your stay is up this year!