Down East Seniors

Published 5:12 pm Thursday, April 14, 2022

The Down East Seniors Club held their April 13 meeting at the Blind Center of NC in Washington. President Roy Whichard led the meeting. Jim Hackney played for the singing of “God Bless America” and the group pledged allegiance to the flag. David Jones gave the opening prayer and Hackney presented factoids for the date in history.

Hackney introduced Jeffery Phipps as the speaker. Phipps is Artistic Director at Arts of the Pamlico, the local arts council. He said AOP is working to complete the restoration of the Vaudeville Theater on the second floor of the Turnage Theater building. The roof replacement has been completed. Replacement of the stage, lighting, sound system, and seating remains to be done when funds can be obtained. The Vaudeville Theater was first built in 1913 and was used until movies came in the 1920’s. Washington was on the center of a circuit of vaudeville troupes that ran from Boston to Miami, so many well-known personalities performed here. C. A. Turnage acquired the building in 1926. Talking moves came out in 1928. Turnage outfitted the downstairs as a movie theater in 1930 and named it the Palace Theater. He wasn’t sure movies would remain popular, so he included a stage and orchestra pit in this theater so it could also accommodate live performances.

John Fisher won the 50/50 drawing.

Deb Ryals will be the speaker at next week’s meeting.

The Down East Seniors Club is a group of older men in the Washington area who meet for fellowship and an interesting program Wednesdays from 10:00-11:00 a.m. and make contributions to local charities. For more information email Julius Brauer at