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Theater fan makes 1,000 trek to ‘Piddle Around’

Over the past seven years, many people have gone the extra mile to get tickets to the popular folklife play, “Come Home, It’s Suppertime” in Brundidge. However, few if any, have gone 500 miles just to purchase a ticket.

But on Tuesday, opening night of the 2009 spring season, in stepped a lady who had done just that.

Elizabeth Dendy had driven nearly 500 miles alone from Gadsden to attend the play. That alone didn’t set her apart, for others have traveled a great distance to the We Piddle Around Theater. But, what did set Dendy apart was that she had already driven the 500-mile round trip on Feb. 25 just to purchase a ticket.

“I had tried for a couple of years to get a ticket by calling but, when I would finally get through, the tickets would all be gone,” Dendy said.

“I had seen the play on the Alabama Department of Tourism and Travel’s calendar of events and knew that it would be something that I would really enjoy. So, I decided to just get in the car and go get a ticket.”

Dendy is originally from Murfreesboro, Tenn. and has a passion for plays, especially those with historical significance and about the South.

“I had to wash a lot of windows to make this trip,” she said, with a smile.

“But it was worth it. I loved the play and I enjoyed visiting the area. This is a wonderful place and it has a lot to offer.”

Dendy’s first stop was at the Johnson Center for the Arts in Troy where she viewed the Bill Wright photography exhibit and the “Just How I Pictured It In My Mind” quilt show.

“The exhibits were educational,” Dendy said.

“And the architecture of the old post office was very interesting. It’s a exciting place to visit.”

Dendy also visited the Tupper Lightfoot Memorial Library in Brundidge and was equally impressed by its architecture.

“I enjoyed visiting the different places and walking around the towns,” she said. “People here have a lot to be proud of. But what I enjoyed most was the play. I had heard that it was excellent and it was. There was so much variety and it told the story of how things were during the Depression.”

“It told about all aspects of life and in such an entertaining way. The stories were real and made you know what was really important to people back then, hard work and family. And, I liked the way people sat around the table together to eat. Like real families. It was worth the trip. I was so glad that I came.”

Wiley White, development director of the Troy-Pike Cultural Arts Center, said Dendy was interested in getting more information about Troy and Brundidge and inquired about interesting sites in the county.

“I was impressed by the fact that she had washed windows to finance her trip and that she had driven so far alone to attend a play,” White said.

“She has to be a true fan of the theater to make such an effort to do something that she really enjoys. You don’t see many people with that kind of gumption. It shows a lot about her character and I kind of like people who will get out there and do something like that. It also says a lot about the arts. The arts reach everybody no matter the stage of life.”