Central Park Players

Holiday Chestnuts: A Fun Selection of Seasonal Shorts is POSTPONED

Due to the ongoing health situations regarding COVID-19, Central Park Players is continuing to abide by all safety measures instituted by the legislation and health department. Our greatest concern is to insure the health and safety of our patrons and volunteers.

It is with heavy hearts that due to these concerns we have decided to postpone Holiday Chestnuts: A Fun Selection of Seasonal Shorts, Directed by Natalie Carmolli to the 2021-2022 season.

It is our hope that we will be able to resume our current season after the first of the year. As always, we will keep you updated of any changes.

CPP 2019-2020 Membership Meeting Minutes/Committee Report and Other Updates

Due to COVID-19, many things have changed this year including cancelling of shows and the annual picnic and membership meeting, holding a Facebook live event to announce the Bess Z award winners, and electing new board members through just the board, not all members. The good news is that everyone who was a member in 2019/2020 will continue their membership in the 2020/2021 season. With all of these changes, we want to make sure you are still in the loop with what is going on.

Our 2019 picnic meeting minutes and committee reports are located here.

For those of you on Instagram, we have a new page @centralparkplayersgh.

In addition, the officers were determined and are listed below:

Board of Directors Officers

President – Trudi Kitchka

Vice President – Peter Drost

Treasurer – Dawn Zuidema

Secretary – Lisa Hilliard

Committee Chair-people

Artistic Development – Peter Drost

Audience Development – Joseph Andersen

Audition/Volunteer Development – Darcie Beekman

Business Development – Trudi Kitchka

Educational Development – MyKenzie Miller

Social Media/Website Development – Andrew Kitchka

Technical Development – Lisa Hilliard

CPP’s New Board Of Directors

CPP is pleased to announce the results of the 2020/2021 Board of Directors election. Well done, everyone!

Please help us congratulate re-elected members Andrew Kitchka, Joseph Andersen and Dawn Zuidema.
We appreciate your dedication and experience looking forward.

And we would like to welcome our first-time elected board members Richard Holmberg and MyKenzie Miller.
We look forward to the new ideas and energy that you will bring to the organization!

CPP has had a long tradition of participation and contributions to the Board from our community, and this year was no exception. Our most heartfelt thanks to everyone who also stepped up for us and put their names on this year’s ballot: Joy Lamphere, Diane Reeths, Paul Reeths and Katie Beemer. Your dedication and enthusiasm for our organization continues to elevate and drive us as we move forward.

Central Park Players Board of Directors

Lisa Hilliard- 2021
Dawn Zuidema- 2021
Joseph Andersen- 2021
Trudi Kitchka- 2022
Peter Drost- 2022
Darcie Beekman- 2022
Andrew Kitchka- 2023
Richard Holmberg- 2023
MyKenzie Miller- 2023

Officers to be determined at our next meeting.

A Letter From Our President

Dear Friends of Central Park Players,


First of all, I want to thank you for your continued support of this, your community theater. We, as a board of directors, wanted to communicate with you and let you know what has been happening behind the scenes. We have made the decision to take all current memberships and extend them free of charge through the end of the 2020/2021 season. This is our small way of thanking you all for your patience and continued support.


Second, because of unprecedented times we have realized that getting our membership together to vote on board positions is very unlikely this year. Our board of directors has passed a motion for only this year that the board, rather than the membership, will vote to fill board openings. These positions shall have the same tenure as the current board vacancies and all other board member qualifications apply.  If you are interested in becoming a board member, please submit an email to me by August 31,2020.


Third, we have been in close contact with the Grand Haven Community Center and in regards to the following protocols from the CDC and the Ottawa County Health Department we sadly regret to announce we will not be able to offer our fall production of CLUE On Stage.  It pains us greatly to have to cancel another production but we look forward to the day we can come together again and all be healthy.


Fourth, we are planning to postpone the cancelled shows until next season dependent upon the directors availability and approval.


Fifth, at the time we plan to proceed with performing the rest of our season, but will do so only if we can keep everyone safe and healthy and following the guidelines and mandates that will be in place. We are currently looking forward to our holiday offering of  Holiday Chestnuts which is a collection of one-act shows sewn together for your enjoyment.


Please remember we still have monthly expenses that need to be met  and we ask that you consider a donation to help us through this time. Please go click the DONATE button and follow the directions from there or feel free to use the USPS. Any amount helps keep our lights on until we can be together again.
Our address is:
Central Park Players
P.O. Box 564
Grand Haven MI 49417


Also for you Amazon shoppers out there remember to use the Amazon Smile (smile.amazon.com) and type in Central Park Players and we will get a % of your shopping and who doesn’t love a good Amazon delivery right?


Thank you for your thoughtful consideration during this time and know we are all just as impatiently waiting as you are.
Thank you for being a part of of theater magic,
Trudi Kitchka
Board President

Bess Z winners!

So great! What a wonderful time in celebrating all of our beloved volunteers that make CPP what it is. While it looked very different, the amount of our appreciation remains the same! Thank you all for tuning in to our LIVE broadcast. Here is an at-a-glance list of the award winners, congratulation all!

Best Show:

“Into the Woods”

Director- Peter Drost, Assistant Director- Joseph Andersen, Theatrical Producer- Darcie Beekman, House Producer- Barb DeVries, Music Director- Lauren Mixter and Choreographer- Samantha Farrar

Best Actor in a Leading Role:

Kristopher Arnold as Theodore Laurence in “Little Women”

Best Actress in a Leading Role:

Lena Hilliard as Jo in “Little Women”

Best Actor in a Major Supporting Role:

Ray Ziemelis as Harry in “Old Ringers”

Best Actress in a Major Supporting Role:

Trudi Kitchka as Kathy Ann in “Old Ringers”

Best Actor in a Minor Supporting Role:

Mike Hassett as The Steward & The Wolf in “Into the Woods”

Best Actress in a Minor Supporting Role:

Ruth Bethke as Aunt March in “Little Women ”

Best Cameo Appearance:

Mark Martin as Cinderella’s Father in “Into the Woods”

Best Outstanding Design Award:

Lisa Hilliard for Costumes in “Into the Woods”

(Above awards determined by Anonymous judges)

Phyllis Pelligeino Award for Excellence in Family Theatre:

Trudi Kitchka

Family Theatre Student Award:

Emily Drost

(Above two awards determined by the Education committee)

Volunteer Service Award:

Shawn Krohn

(Award is determined by the entire CPP Board of Directors)

The Bess Z Award for Outstanding Dedication to CPP Award:

Becky Smith

(Award is determined by the Bess Z committee)

Presidential Award for Outstanding Dedication to CPP Award:

Darcie Beekman

(Award is determined by the CPP Board President)

Time Running out to submit to join our Board!

Monday, August 31st is the deadline to email!

What makes a great CPP board member?
A passion for the local arts and theatre community at large.
A willingness to serve in various areas both on and off stage.

The Board is seeking to fill the following seats:
One, 1 year term position
One vacant, 3 year term position

There are also three members up for reelection:
Joseph Andersen (3 year term)
Andrew Kitchka (3 year term)
Dawn Zuidema (1 year term)


Central Park Players Board of Directors consists of nine total seats. CPP Board members also vote to serve as a chair or member of one (or more) of seven existing committees: Artistic Development, Audience Development, Business Development, Educational Development, Social Media and Website
Development, Technical Development and Audition/Volunteer Development.
The board meets every 2nd Sunday of each month at 12:30 pm at the Grand Haven Community Center.
Anyone interested in getting their name on a ballot to be a CPP Board Member can send an email to:
(Subject Line) Attn: Trudi Kitchka CPP Board President
centralparkplayers@gmail.org

Monday, August 31st deadline

Community Picnic canceled, Join us on Facebook Live for Bess Z awards!

Please help us give congratulations to the 2019/2020 Bess Z Award Nominees!
The awards will be given at our Facebook Live event Sat August 8th @ 6pm

Best Show:


Into the Woods: Peter Drost – Director, Joe Andersen – Assistant Director, Darcie Beekman & Barb DeVries – Producers, Lauren Mixter – Music Director, Samantha Farrar – Choreographer
Little Women: Lisa Hilliard – Director, Miranda Sorenson – Assistant Director, Barb DeVries – Producer
Old Ringers: Andrew Kitchka – Director, Becky Smith – Assistant Director, Barb DeVries – Producer

Lead Male Performance:


Kristopher Arnold – The Baker – Into the Woods
Kristopher Arnold – Theodore Laurence – Little Women

Lead Female Performance:


Kellene Damian – The Baker’s Wife – Into the Woods
Lauren Mixter – The Witch – Into the Woods
Kellene Damian – Jo – Little Women

Major Supporting Male Performance:


Jake Trygstad – Jack – Into the Woods
Robert Sniderman – Mr. Laurence – Little Women
Ray Ziemelis – Harry – Old Ringers

Major Supporting Female Performance:


Michaela Kerkstra – Cinderella – Into the Woods
Olivia Ward – Little Red Riding Hood – Into the Woods
Michaela Kerkstra – Amy – Little Women
Erin Michelson – Meg – Little Women
Katie McCool – Beth – Little Women
Mary Ellen Murphy – Verna – Old Ringers
Trudi Kerkstra – Kathy Ann – Old Ringers

Minor Supporting Male Performance:


Michael Hassett – The Steward / The Wolf – Into the Woods
Andrew Kitchka – Rapunzel’s Prince – Into the Woods
Mark Martin – John Brooke – Little Women

Minor Supporting Female Performance:


Erin Mickelson – Florinda – Into the Woods
Sophie Recknagel – Rapunzel – Into the Woods
Elora Danan Bolthouse – Lucinda – Into the Woods
Kathleen Hansen – Cinderella’s Mother / Giant – Into the Woods
Diane Reeths – Granny – Into the Woods
Ruth Bethke – Aunt March – Little Women
Mandy Keeler – Mrs. Kirke – Little Women

Cameo Performance:


Mark Martin – Cinderella’s Father – Into the Woods
Marin Keeler – Minnie Kirke – Little Women
Adelaide VandenBerg – Kitty Kirke – Little Women

Outstanding Design Award:


Todd Kirchner – Sound Design – Into the Woods
Lisa Hilliard – Costume Design – Into the Woods
Becky Anderson – Costume Design – Little Women
Shawn Epps – Properties – Little Women
Trudi Kerkstra – Hair & Makeup – Little Women
Ray Ziemelis – Set Design – Little Women
Andrew Kitchka – Sound Design – Little Women
Katie Beemer – Lighting Design – Old Ringers

We’re looking for Board Members Like You!

What makes a great CPP board member?
A passion for the local arts and theatre community at large.
A willingness to serve in various areas both on and off stage.

The Board is seeking to fill the following seats:
One, 1 year term position
One vacant, 3 year term position

There are also three members up for reelection:
Joseph Andersen (3 year term)
Andrew Kitchka (3 year term)
Dawn Zuidema (1 year term)

Central Park Players Board of Directors consists of nine total seats. CPP Board members also vote to serve as a chair or member of one (or more) of seven existing committees: Artistic Development, Audience Development, Business Development, Educational Development, Social Media and Website
Development, Technical Development and Audition/Volunteer Development.
The board meets every 2nd Sunday of each month at 12:30 pm at the Grand Haven Community Center.
Anyone interested in getting their name on a ballot to be a CPP Board Member can send an email to:
(Subject Line) Attn: Trudi Kitchka CPP Board President
centralparkplayers@gmail.org

Monday, August 31st deadline

Bess Z Nominations

Please help us give congratulations to the 2019/2020 Bess Z Award Nominees!
The awards will be given at our CPP Annual Community Summer Picnic tentatively rescheduled for August 7th!

Best Show:


Into the Woods: Peter Drost – Director, Joe Andersen – Assistant Director, Darcie Beekman & Barb DeVries – Producers, Lauren Mixter – Music Director, Samantha Farrar – Choreographer
Little Women: Lisa Hilliard – Director, Miranda Sorenson – Assistant Director, Barb DeVries – Producer
Old Ringers: Andrew Kitchka – Director, Becky Smith – Assistant Director, Barb DeVries – Producer

Lead Male Performance:


Kristopher Arnold – The Baker – Into the Woods
Kristopher Arnold – Theodore Laurence – Little Women

Lead Female Performance:


Kellene Damian – The Baker’s Wife – Into the Woods
Lauren Mixter – The Witch – Into the Woods
Kellene Damian – Jo – Little Women

Major Supporting Male Performance:


Jake Trygstad – Jack – Into the Woods
Robert Sniderman – Mr. Laurence – Little Women
Ray Ziemelis – Harry – Old Ringers

Major Supporting Female Performance:


Michaela Kerkstra – Cinderella – Into the Woods
Olivia Ward – Little Red Riding Hood – Into the Woods
Michaela Kerkstra – Amy – Little Women
Erin Michelson – Meg – Little Women
Katie McCool – Beth – Little Women
Mary Ellen Murphy – Verna – Old Ringers
Trudi Kerkstra – Kathy Ann – Old Ringers

Minor Supporting Male Performance:


Michael Hassett – The Steward / The Wolf – Into the Woods
Andrew Kitchka – Rapunzel’s Prince – Into the Woods
Mark Martin – John Brooke – Little Women

Minor Supporting Female Performance:


Erin Mickelson – Florinda – Into the Woods
Sophie Recknagel – Rapunzel – Into the Woods
Elora Danan Bolthouse – Lucinda – Into the Woods
Kathleen Hansen – Cinderella’s Mother / Giant – Into the Woods
Diane Reeths – Granny – Into the Woods
Ruth Bethke – Aunt March – Little Women
Mandy Keeler – Mrs. Kirke – Little Women

Cameo Performance:


Mark Martin – Cinderella’s Father – Into the Woods
Marin Keeler – Minnie Kirke – Little Women
Adelaide VandenBerg – Kitty Kirke – Little Women

Outstanding Design Award:


Todd Kirchner – Sound Design – Into the Woods
Lisa Hilliard – Costume Design – Into the Woods
Becky Anderson – Costume Design – Little Women
Shawn Epps – Properties – Little Women
Trudi Kerkstra – Hair & Makeup – Little Women
Ray Ziemelis – Set Design – Little Women
Andrew Kitchka – Sound Design – Little Women
Katie Beemer – Lighting Design – Old Ringers

Annual Community Picnic

POSTPONED TO AUGUST 7th

It is that time again friends! We’re hopeful that the picnic will take place! Please put this tentative date on your calendar and we will keep you posted about the details!

If you are unfamiliar… at the CPP Annual Community Summer Picnic, we usually have food and fellowship and hand out the Bess Z Awards. It is a time to hear about the up coming season, purchase your memberships for that new season, vote for new or returning board members and more.

This event is for everyone in the community! If you are reading this…you’re invited!

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