Tibbits Names Fall Volunteers of the Month

Tibbits has named their August, September and October volunteers of the month, including including Jan Baughey, Judy Bonnell, and Carol Coyle for their help with folding programs and bulk mailings, ushering, selling raffle tickets, soliciting donations for the auction, and more at the historic theatre.

COLDWATER – After a busy fall event schedule that included a record-breaking annual auction which relied heavily on volunteers, Tibbits has named their August, September and October volunteers of the month, including Jan Baughey, Judy Bonnell, and Carol Coyle; respectively.

Having just moved here in the spring of 2021, August Volunteer of the Month is Coldwater newcomer Jan Baughey. The view from her apartment window is of Tibbits and she was in awe of its beauty, so she went over to the theatre one afternoon and ran into a volunteer working a show. The volunteer was so nice and was so happy doing it that Jan decided she should try it as well. Since then, Baughey has ushered, helped in the gift shop, sold auction raffle tickets, and worked on bulk mailings.

Originally from Somerset, Baughey is the youngest of seven children, and has an identical twin sister.  She has two children and three grandchildren.  Along with volunteering at Tibbits and spending time with her family, her hobbies include music, art, reading, being in nature, cooking and gardening.

Baughey is “overwhelmed by the joy and positivity I have received from working with others at Tibbits. I am so grateful that the first volunteer was so interested in answering my questions and encouraging me to volunteer.” She continued, “I would encourage others to come join the family of Tibbits volunteers!  This gives my life purpose and meaning and I just love it!”

September’s Volunteer of the Month is Judy Bonnell, who is also relatively new to the volunteering with the theatre. Though she only started this summer, she has been very enthusiastic and helpful in several capacities, from ushering to folding programs to doing bulk mailings.  Originally from Columbus, Ind. but spending the summers in Coldwater, she and her husband Doug moved permanently to their house on Rose Lake last winter.

A retired office manager of a church, Bonnell has two grown children and nine grandchildren. In her spare time she enjoys walking, biking, reading, and crossword puzzles. She loves volunteering at Tibbits because she’s been able to meet new friends and get to know Coldwater better. Though she used to be involved in community theatre, she “no longer cares to be on stage. Tibbits gave me an opportunity to still be involved in theatre but in a different way.”

Long-time Tibbits volunteer and supporter Carol Coyle is Tibbits’ October Volunteer of the Month. Back in 2002, Coyle was on staff as Tibbits’ membership coordinator, a position she held for 10 years. Since then, she volunteered on different projects at Tibbits- everything from golf outings to the auctions, which she says are her favorite because “I get a chance to interact with the friendly staff at Tibbits and renew my acquaintances with the businesses in the area.”

Growing up in Ohio, she met her husband David at the University of Dayton and moved to Coldwater when Dave was offered a position in 1977. Since then, she has enjoyed raising their sons in Coldwater and becoming involved in the local community as a little league coach, election inspector, and volunteer on various community projects. Now retired, she enjoys spending time at the local pool, taking long walks, and playing bridge with her best friends.

On being chosen as volunteer of the month, Coyle says, “I am honored…I am just one of many who work to make the annual auction a successful fundraising event. I enjoy soliciting auction items from the generous local businesses. They are willing to open their purses and hearts to support Tibbits.”

 Like the other volunteers, Coyle says, “I encourage others who care for this historic theatre to step up and volunteer as well. It is not only a rewarding experience but a way to meet new friends while expanding one’s horizons.”

Tibbits staff chooses the Volunteer of the Month based on hours and/or service, as well as leadership, special skills or expertise shared. Criteria may be project specific or general support and volunteerism. In recognition of this award, each will receive a $25 Coldwater Area Chamber of Commerce Debit Card.

Tibbits is always looking for more volunteers in a variety of areas: ushering, working the gift shop or concessions, doing general office help, sorting archival materials, planting flowers, decorating the theatre, and much more. Those interested in volunteering should contact Tirsha Odisher at Tibbits at 517-278-6029 or boxoffice@Tibbits.org. Tibbits Opera House is located at 14 S. Hanchett Street, Coldwater, MI. www.Tibbits.org.