Theater fundraiser to benefit community projects

By Wendell Hutson
Contributing Writer

An upcoming fundraiser that includes a theater performance will be used to fund several community projects in the Hyde Park area.

The South East Chicago Commission is sponsoring A Night at the Theater at 7:30 p.m. on May 24 at the Court Theater, 5535 S. Ellis Ave. And there will be a reception prior to the performance from 5:15 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. at the Smart Museum, 5550 S. Greenwood Ave.

Tickets can be purchased to see “Harvey,” a comedy about a pleasant man with an invisible, 6’3 rabbit, at the SECC headquarters, 1511 E. 53rd St., or at for $75. Organizers said it encourages people to purchase their tickets by May 19, “so we can get a count of how many people will be attending,” said Diane Burnham, senior program manager for community and economic development for the SECC.

Last year the nonprofit raised $6,000 from the event and this year it hopes to exceed that amount to further assist projects in Hyde Park, Woodlawn, Kenwood, Oakland, and Washington Park.

“We want to at least raise the same amount as we did in 2016, but ultimately we are hoping to raise even more this year,” Burnham said. “Five projects were completed in 2016 thanks proceeds from the [theatre] fundraiser.”

According to Burnham, a selection committee reviewed 15 proposals for community projects last year before choosing the winners.

“This fundraiser is a great chance for people to support community projects,” Burnham said. “I always enjoy this event and anyone who attends will love it as well.”