COLDWATER – Tibbits volunteers play an instrumental role, even this year, including the recent auction; for her dedication to the historic theatre, working on the auction and a variety of positions, Tibbits named Stacy Gilbert as its October volunteer of the month.
Since Gilbert retired three years ago, she began volunteering at Tibbits for events and behind the scenes. She has continuously ushered, tended bar, and worked in the gift shop during performances. She also assisted with Arts Alive’s holiday event last year. She has helped with letter and program folding in the office, gathered auction donations, attended basket-making and auction pick-up nights and has worked the night of the big event, filling in where needed.
“My favorite volunteer position so far has been as an usher. I love seeing how much others enjoy the plays!” Gilbert said, adding, “There are so many aspects to running the theatre that theatre attendees don’t realize. It has been fun learning some of them through volunteering!”
From Angola, IN, Gilbert, who just celebrated her 38th anniversary with her husband George, raised two daughters there and has always been part of the Angola community. Prior to her retirement, she spent 15 years as a secretary at Angola High School. She loved the interaction with the students and staff and the last few years she helped lead the Drama Club. She worked alongside students and staff on the school productions, which she says, “was definitely the highlight of my time there!”
An avid scrapbooker and card-maker, Gilbert has recently taken up sandblast art—something entirely new—that has stretched her artistic boundaries. Even though her creative interests are varied, she says that her favorite thing to do is travel to spend time with her three young grandchildren, Annie, Kellyn, and Meyer. Gilbert laughed, “They are ‘stuck’ with a grandma that sings and teaches them songs from musicals. So far they love it! I can’t wait to take them to their first live musical theatre — maybe at Tibbits?”
The Volunteer of the Month is chosen by Tibbits staff. Selection is based on the 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, Gilbert received a $25 Coldwater Area Chamber of Commerce Debit Card.
Volunteer coordinator Tirsha Odisher said, “Stacy gathered donations for our auction from Angola area businesses, which helps the theatre increase its outreach beyond Branch County. She also helped with the logistics of having a new format for the auction this year when we had to implement changes due to COVID. We can always count on her and appreciate her willingness to happily volunteer in a variety of areas!”
Tibbits is always looking for more volunteers for ushering, working the gift shop or concessions area, 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.