Klamath Falls, Ore. – (‘Esquire’ photo courtesy Dan Haneckow) – The Ross Ragland Theater in Klamath Falls is celebrating a 30th birthday this year.
The Esquire movie theater opened in the 1940’s.
It wasn’t until the late 1980’s that it was converted for use as a performing arts theater.
The Ross Ragland Theater opened in 1989 with a community performance of ‘The Music Man’.
“I particularly remember the costumes and the lights, and the sound.” Recalls Ragland Director of Development and Marketing Terra Russo. “Being young, and seeing something on stage like that for the first time, it was really, it was big.”
A cultural center was opened next door in June of 1999, providing much needed dressing room and office space.
Many top acts have performed on the Ragland stage including country music star Garth Brooks, and rock singer Pat Benatar.
“We’ve also provided a solid youth education program with our theater camps.” Adds Russo. “Which really benefited me as a child.”
It’s estimated that about 100,000 people attend a Ragland event each year.
The Ross Ragland Theater will be unveiling their 30th performing arts season lineup sometime in July.
You’ll find more information at their website: www.rrtheater.org
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970’s. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.Lyle’s job history is quite colorful.
He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90’s as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.
“The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story”.
When he’s not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.