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North Folk Community Theatre Hosting "12th Annual Building On Tradition Gala And Art Auction: As We Stumble Along"

T.J. Clemente

The North Folk Community Theatre (NFCT) is a magical part of what makes the community so special. On Friday, June 12th, the 12th Annual Building on Tradition Gala and Art Auction: As We Stumble Along will be held at 7 p.m. - but due to the coronavirus NFCT will hold this year's Gala virtually on Zoom. With a virtual Gala, folks won't be able to be together in person, but an online event allows NFCT fans from all around the country to still come together.

On that North Fork Community Theatre stage over the years many local actors have felt the glow of the stage lights as the audience appreciated their efforts for live entertainment. The theatre itself has a charm that adds to every production there. Mary Motto Kalich, NFCT Treasurer, has a unique relationship with the theatre. She performed there as a child, she acted there after college, and now produces plays there when she isn't busy raising money for the place. It was she who gave me a grand tour last year after the amazing renovation brought the historic venue from the 19th century into the 21st!

"We will be auctioning off pictures, photography, handmade quilts, and a 75" TV from now through Sunday, June 21st at 11:59 p.m.," Kalich Motto shared about the fundraiser. "Auction items can be seen on our website www.nfct.com or by viewing them in the windows at 245 Love Lane in Mattituck. You can join the excitement while helping the theatre by placing a bid on a Gala Auction item by emailing galabid@nfct.com."

She explained, "We want to let everyone know we are here. We want our community to connect and this virtual option seems to be the way to go." When asked if there was a financial number NFCT was aiming at as a goal, Motto Kalich replied, "No, that's not the goal. The goal is bringing the North Fork Community Theatre folks together, to be able to show some enthusiasm and participation. The money total is secondary, but the paintings are amazing. You should go to the website or come down to 245 Love Lane to see them - they're safely spaced for viewing. We may add this feature next year, if people enjoy it as I think they will."

Kalich Motto revealed that the benefit will include "live performances by NFCT members and alumni, including Tom Ashton (The Blacklist), Christina Stankewicz and Broadway stars Rob Bartlett (Little Shop of Horrors) and Jim Borstelmann (Chicago, The Producers)."

Kalich Motto is joined on the NFCT board by Mike Hipp, President; Kelsey Cheslock, Vice President; and Liz Liszanckie, Secretary. NFCT Directors include Chelsea Chizever, Doreen Kirby, Matthew Orr, Laurie Phelan, James Pritchard, David Scheer, and Jenna Spates.

Mattituck, the home of the North Fork Community Theatre, is one of those gems of a village on the East End of Long Island. Hopefully sooner rather than later live theater will return. Irregardless, Kalich Motto is proud of her Theatre and of Mattituck. She said, "I think it's the best place to live and raise my family."

There is no fee to "attend" the 12th Annual Building on Tradition Gala and Art Auction: As We Stumble Along, however donations are greatly appreciated. A donation at the Sparkling Supporter level ($50) includes recognition at the Gala.

To register for the 12th Annual Building on Tradition VIRTUAL Gala, visit www.nfct.com.

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