Pioneer Town's Stolte Shed displayed its versatility as a community venue when last weekend it served as a local movie theater for audiences that turned out to enjoy some old-style good times.
Two screenings of the Harold Lloyd silent film comedy classic "Safety Last" on Saturday and Sunday also opened up new possibilities for service to Surface Creek Historical Society members and to the local public.
The buttery aroma of fresh popped popcorn served up to guests for free was in the air, and root beer and orange soda were also available to help wash it down.
In the movie, "The Boy" played by Lloyd overcomes obstacle after obstacle to get "The Girl" and along the way encounters some outrageous characters. The movie proceeds to its climax and Lloyd executes some incredibly athletic slapstick comedy routines along the way that put a room full of movie goers into stitches of laughter.
The Historical Society is presenting another silent film classic for members and for the community on April 7 and 8. SCVHS members are admitted for free at the Saturday evening showing and the public is invited to attend Sunday evening showings for a small $3 donation. The popcorn is free for everyone.
The movie was accompanied by an entertaining musical theme throughout highlighting the everyman antics of the Lloyd character as he struggled to cope with the vicissitudes of life. The movie's action kept the audience's attention -- and not to miss the plot-moving captions of the silent movie era 1923 film.
The silent film entertainment format is a natural tie-in with the SCVHS mission of historic preservation and interpretation. The "Safety Last" screening was accompanied by classic cartoons. One featured Betty Boop. Another took audiences back to their childhoods before the advent of political correctness as Woody Woodpecker and a nemesis engaged in a manic chase back and forth across the screen, each one expressing the most unkind intentions toward the other.
The two Harold Lloyd movies are the only ones currently scheduled for local audiences this year. If the events are judged a success, the program could be expanded next year, Historical Society officials said.
Thanks to the efforts of state Rep. Millie Hamner, House District 61, Colorado State University plans to re-open the Rogers Mesa research site.
The facility was taken out of operation in 2011, due to budget cuts throughout the CSU system.