“The Best Christmas Pageant Ever”

Trouble is brewing when the Herdman kids force their way into the annual Christmas program. Everybody knows they are bad to the bone, so why would they be allowed in the big show?
Iowa River Players will present this lawless collection of barbarians in four performances of “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” at the community theatre at 901 Broadway Street in Rowan.

Come witness the pandemonium — and the hilarity — when the Herdmans meet the Christmas story head-on in this holiday favorite. Performances are on Sat. & Sun., Nov. 12 & 13 and 19 & 20. All performances are afternoon matinees beginning at 2:00. The box office opens one hour before curtain and tickets are available at the door. (Adults $10, Students $2)

“The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” by Beverly Robinson has long been enjoyed by young readers. A favorite holiday show for families, the story is based on a popular children’s book that focuses on a clan of poorly-behaved children who through their involvement in the Christmas pageant help the community discover the true meaning of Christmas. What starts out looking like a disaster evolves into the most unusual and meaningful pageant anyone has seen. And without a doubt, the best one ever!

Cast members include as the Herdman kids: Eveie Sherman (Ralph), Chloe (Claudie) and Remi (Gladys) Johnson from Clarion; Matt Smith (LeRoy), Lizzie Nelson (Ollie) and Grace Ritter (Imogene) from Belmond.
The members of the Bradley family are portrayed by Linda DeNio (Mother) of Dows; Maddie Mason (Beth), Kelly (Father) and Chelsea (Charlie) Sayer of Belmond.
The Children of the congregation are played by: Hanna Jo Gustafson (Beverly) of Clarion, Mariah Smith (Alice), Kelsey Peterson (Hobie), Connor Miltenberger (David), Jesse Brown (Elmer) of Belmond.
Micheala Henrichs from Hampton portrays the more grown up Beth who narrates the story and she is joined by Mel Mayberry also from Hampton as Mrs. Armstrong. Others in the cast are Zach Reed (Rev Hopkins), Karen Smith (Mrs McCarthy), Jason (Fireman) and Michele Miltonberger (Mrs Slocum), Kate Simonson (Mrs Clausing) and Steve Froehlich (Fireman).

In its film version, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” starred Loretta Swit of TV’s M*A*S*H* fame.

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