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Have You Heard?
for August 18
Here are some special events and people we thought you'd want to hear about.

By Marilyn McKnight Harrison
Midland Reporter-Telegram
Copyright 2002, Midland Reporter-Telegram

Playwright/radio anchor Rosemary Frisino Toohey has kept Permian Basin residents laughing the last three weekends with her play, Gladys in Wonderland.

It closes today with a 2 p.m. matinee.

Rosemary flew in from Baltimore, MD last weekend to see the Maverick Players' production at its Midland Park Mall location. She was quite complimentary in her assessment of their endeavor.

Although the author was in Midland for barely 36 hours, she was treated to as much of the West Texas experience as possible. That included a tour of the Petroleum Museum (since time precluded a trip to the oil patch); local cuisine specialties, among them Tex-Mex and chicken-fried steak; the world-renowned Summer Mummers; and a ride to the Mavericks' production in a pick-up.

In addition, Betty Kemp and other female cast members of Gladys entertained Rosemary at a luncheon at Venezia's and she attended a cast party after the show at the colorful, art-filled home of Jim Huddleston and his wife, Sue Smith, who appear as a married couple in the play.

Rosemary caught an early morning flight out of Midland Aug. 10 in order to return home in time to travel to a family reunion. She admits that she gets much of her material from her family members, who just ask that she not use their real names.

She and her husband, Bill, media director for the Baltimore County Police Department, are the parents of four. She's a stay-at-home mom most of the time, which gives her time to pursue her love of (and talent for) playwriting. She has an extensive background in radio news, but now confines her profession to Saturdays, when she works as an anchor for an all-news station in Washington, D.C.

Although Midland is the opposite of her port city home, Rosemary enjoyed her in-and-out visit. She was amazed by the flatness of the land (we forgot to tell her it allows us to enjoy the high sky), found the weather hot but not humid (like she is used to), the people welcoming and hospitable, and in her gracious way, she described Midland water as "rather flavorful."

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