Opera House honors director

Staff report

A table dedication ceremony and renaming of the theater at the Fayette Opera House will be held Saturday, Sept. 22, 2 p.m., to celebrate the life of the late Thomas A. Spiess.

The table, a portrait, and a 24-hour lamp will be dedicated to commemorate Spiess, the opera house’s director for over 40 years, who died in 2018. Patricia Smith, retired director of the Allen County Museum in Lima, Ohio, will be the featured speaker.

The opera house theater will be renamed the Ginnivan-Spiess Auditorium in Spiess’s honor.

Prior to his passing, Spiess commissioned a community table for the Bean Creek Valley History Center in Fayette built from pieces of wood from historically relevant buildings in the area. The table was built by BCVHC volunteer Brent Holland, and includes materials from 15 barns from four counties and five townships; slate shingle from the McLaughlin one-room schoolhouse, circa 1880s; Crittenden Carriage House, circa 1860s; Goble’s Green Gables Tourist Cabin, circa 1940s; a Medina Union Seminary dormitory, circa 1850s; and wood block printing press letters from the Morenci, Mich., State Line Observer.

Following the ceremony, guests may visit the Bean Creek Valley History Center to view the new Tom Spiess Community Table, ”Where History and People Meet.”

Staff report