This history of the Shawnee Playhouse begins when C.C. Worthington built the playhouse in 1904 as the Worthington Hall. The Shawnee Playhouse was designed to provide entertainment and educational benefit to residents and visitors of Shawnee on Delaware, Pennsylvania. The Shawnee Players, consisting mainly of local actors and actresses, performed here to enthusiastic audiences from 1904 to World War II. In 1943, Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians began to broadcast their famous radio programs from the Hall. Unfortunately, the Hall later fell into disuse.
When the Kirkwood family purchased the Resort in 1978, they began to restore Worthington Hall. Neighbors and members of the Shawnee Volunteer Fire Company also worked on the restoration. Thanks to extensive efforts led by Mrs. Virginia Kirkwood, the Hall was placed on the National Registry of Historic Places and won the prestigious Phoenix Award, presented by the Society of American Travel Writers.
On June 24, 1985, an arsonist burned the beautiful Shawnee Playhouse down. With a great deal of help from the people of Shawnee on Delaware, the Seabees, the Hughes Foundation, the National endowment for the Arts, The National Trust, a Community Development Block Grant, and generous donations from many individuals and friends, the Shawnee Playhouse was rebuilt. The Kirkwood family is very proud of the Shawnee Playhouse and its history, and they hope you enjoy your experience in this historic building.
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