New Event Delights Audience

Adding to the area’s cultural scene, a new event – a Dance Gallery presented by the Wheeling Arts and Cultural Commission – delighted an enthusiastic audience at the Ohio County Public Library Thursday evening, March 15.

The library’s auditorium provided a perfect venue for the artistic endeavor. In addition to enjoying the arts, guests savored a lovely array of appetizers and desserts prepared by chef Chris Kefauver from the culinary arts department of West Virginia Northern Community College.

Organized by the Wheeling Arts and Cultural Commission as a fundraiser for the Wheeling Arts Fest, the event also offered area residents an opportunity to experience another form of artistic collaboration.

During the program, artwork and poetry were presented, then were interpreted by a musician and dancers.

Paintings done by area artists Patricia Croft and Robert Sako were displayed, and audience members were invited to record a one-word response to the artwork. Three cards – each bearing a word – were selected at random and used by a violinist and three modern dancers (led by Anna Harsh) as a starting point for an improvisational work of music and dance.

In the second half of the program, Wheeling poet and author Marc Harshman read two of his poems. Harshman recited each poem again, accompanied by the violinist and interpreted by the dancers.

Incidentally, the second annual Wheeling Arts Fest will take place Saturday, July 14.

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Irish eyes (and many non-Irish eyes) likely were smilin’ during the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Pittsburgh Saturday, March 17. Parade watchers and participants have a former Wheeling resident to thank for much of the event’s success.

Janice Allen Griffith, who grew up in Wheeling and graduated from Wheeling Central Catholic High School, is the parade organizer for the Pittsburgh celebration.

Griffith explained to a classmate that she handles the database of parade entries submitted by the different committees. Then she arranges the lineup, assigning position numbers to all 186 entries. After completing that task, she writes the reviewing stand announcers’ scripts and handles other assignments from the event chairman.

In addition, Griffith is involved with an improvisational acting group, The Much Ado Players. The troupe offers period appearances, performing medieval, Renaissance and Victorian theatrical pieces. She also has worked in several movies as an extra.

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We have learned that Scott and Erin Wilson of Wheeling have been notified by ABC officials that a video featuring their 2-year-old son, Benjamin, is scheduled to air on the network’s “America’s Funniest Home Videos” show at 7 p.m. today, March 18.

Erin Huggins Wilson, who submitted the video to the program, is a graduate of Wheeling Park High School and a graduate of Wheeling Jesuit University. Her husband is a graduate of John Marshall High School and a graduate of Fairmont State University.

Linda Comins can be reached via e-mail at: