The Village Players will present Fruitcakes, a family-friendly Christmas comedy, this December. Fruitcakes opens with the first Village Players Fundraiser Dinner Theater in two years on Friday, December 2 at 7 p.m. Fruitcakes will be performed at the historic James McCabe Theater, located at 506 5th St. in Valrico.
The dinner theater is $35 per person and advanced reservations are required. Food will be provided by Fat Willie’s Fish Camp and will feature catfish and/or cod, hushpuppies, coleslaw and grits or green beans. Drinks include iced tea, lemonade and ice water. Sodas are available for an additional cost.
Performances are on Friday, December 9 and 16 as well as Saturday, December 3, 10 and 17 at 8 p.m. Three matinees will be on Sunday, December 4, 11 and 18 at 3 p.m.
Tickets are $18 for general admission and $15 for seniors and students with ID. For group sales of 10 or more, please call ahead for reserved seating or dinner reservations. You can call Chris at 813-480-3147. For other tickets, please visit www.thevillageplayersvalrico.com.
Fruitcakes is directed by Gail Pierce, who said, “Fruitcakes, written by Julian Wiles, is a delightful little gem of a Christmas comedy. It has a ‘cast of thousands,’ which includes lots of children.”
Fruitcakes also features a bunch of small-town eccentrics, including Mattie Sue, a six-time widowed woman with a heart as big as all outdoors. You also have Skeeter, a Harvard graduate with a degree in engineering, who spends his time fishing, using nothing but poetry for bait; a group of hunters who pray to Clyde the hunting angel; and Mack’s Barn becomes the town’s meeting place.
Mix this together with a Christmas tree farm, thousands of outdoor Christmas lights, a chickenpox epidemic, two Southern spinsters who bake fruitcakes for the whole town, a lost tomcat named Tutti Frutti, and the Christmas Illumination with Buster the Christmas hog.
Then, add into this Jamie, a city kid who has run away from home and traveled as far as his money will take him. At first, he thinks this town’s inhabitants are “nuttier than fruitcakes,” but soon he comes to admire, appreciate and adore this nutty little town.
Pierce added, “This is a moving story of comedy mixed with alienation, understanding and reconciliation. Fruitcakes provides audiences with a heaping helping of warmth and Christmas cheer and a fun way to start the holiday season.”