Small Talk: ‘The Nutcracker’ returns
by Annette Maddox
Special to The Star
Nov 04, 2012 | 1423 views |  0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Forgoing pointy-toed shoes and bell-bedecked caps, a cadre of Christmas “elves” gathered recently to launch the grand holiday effort that is “The Nutcracker.” For the 31st year, volunteers with the Knox Concert Series once again will lend their energies to producing what has become a tradition for our area.

Alabama Ballet returns with its Balanchine version of “The Nutcracker” for one performance on Sunday, Dec. 2, at the Anniston Performing Arts Center. To ready for the show, more than 20 men and women in leadership roles met at the home of Patricia Smith, and over wine, cheese and other munchies, began work on the massive (but obviously fun) undertaking.

The congenial group enjoyed an array of cocktail fare provided by Betsy Davis, “Nutcracker” general chairman, and Mandi King, Knox president, presented amidst (of course) an array of classic Nutcrackers owned by the hostess. Mandi’s chicken salad and Betsy’s caramel-dipped grapes had everyone asking for recipes.

Scott Skinner, Nutcracker Shoppe chairman, passed around photos of the unique ornaments and Nutcracker figures to be featured in The Nutcracker Boutique this year. The boutique is a favorite added attraction to the day, as is the bake sale that features offerings from some of the area’s most renowned bakers. Christina Dorn, chairman, promised there would once again be red velvet and rum cakes, cheese straws and homemade breads.

Sheila Lindley, with assistance from Cathy Fockele and Gail Barker, is planning another Sugar Plum Party after the performance. Young guests will enjoy refreshments, meet the dancers on stage and have their photographs made with them.

A popular fundraising activity that provides a great gift-giving solution and adds holiday touches to homes and neighborhoods happens the week after “The Nutcracker,” when volunteers decorate mailboxes and lampposts with fresh greenery and a big red bow. Toni Christopher is in charge of this effort with help from more than 25 talented designers.

Pam McKenzie, who is serving for the 12th year as ticket chairman, announced tickets are now in stores.

To share your news with Small Talk, contact Annette Maddox at

“The Nutcracker”

Dec. 2 at 2 p.m.

Where: Anniston Performing Arts Center

For tickets call Pam McKenzie at 256-832-4554 or visit Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce, Couch’s Jewelers, Farmers and Merchants Bank in Jacksonville, Golden Springs Pharmacy, Tyson Fine Wine & Things and NobleBank in Anniston and Oxford.

To volunteer or for more information, call Betsy Davis at 256-831-7927. Email or

Save the Date

Just in time for the Christmas shopping season, Anniston Museum presents the second annual Winter Market weekend, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Shop wares (to please any budget) from more than two dozen craftspeople and artisans, and wrap up your Christmas shopping before Thanksgiving! No cost to shop, but why not visit the museum exhibit halls while you’re there? Regular admission charged on Friday, but half-price admission charged Saturday.
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Small Talk: ‘The Nutcracker’ returns by Annette Maddox
Special to The Star

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