Become a cardboard cutout and benefit the Plaza Theatre

Supporters of the Plaza Theatre can purchase a cardboard cutout of themselves and take the best seat in the house.

The cutouts, a common sight at sports arenas and stadiums during the pandemic, will help ensure social distancing in the theater located at 33 S. Main St. in downtown Miamisburg.

“Part of the theater experience, be it live or the movies, is the shared experience you get going to see a show,” said Emily von Struckrad-Smolinski, the Plaza Theatre’s executive director. “Without all the people in the audience, you lose out on that shared experience that people love so much.”

The whimsical idea has taken off, and Struckrad-Smolinski said she has received an enthusiastic response.

The first cutout to take a seat was of Doug Sorrell, one of the Plaza Theatre’s emeritus board of directors.

An image of the theater’s mascot, Pinkie, a fiberglass horse wearing a mask, will take a spot next week. The horse keeps watch over the Plaza’s lobby and once stood on the marquee of The Western Store, Sorrell’s family business.

A likeness of Charlie, a black and brown puppy, will also help keep people apart, along with images of human friends of the theater.

The cardboard cutouts cost $50 and can be purchased on the Plaza Theatre website. Submitted photographs must be high-resolution and follow the theater’s guidelines.

When COVID-19 protocols are lifted, and social distancing is no longer needed, the cutouts will be available to take home.

Proceeds will help fund maintenance of the historic 101-year-old building.

“It’s a way to show community support in Miamisburg and the whole Miami Valley,” Struckrad-Smolinski, said. “The cutouts may not be able to laugh or smile, but at least they are there in support.”

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