Welcome back once again to your unofficial report from Pawhuska on how the filming of a 200-million-dollar movie there is coming along. From the spot where Apple Films built a replica train station, I can tell you all the trains and train cars are gone. The props have been taken away and I’ve noticed many of the cimi trails that were there are also gone. Are they done shootingthe scenes there? Well, it sure looks like it! All last week 200 extras along with another 100 or so crew members were in Fairfax where I understand they will all be again this week before returning to Pawhuska to film scenes in the downtown area. Friends it is not too late to see history in the making right in your backyard.
There’s another story I’m following in Pawhuska and no it’s not about Ree Drummond but a movie theatre that opened first as a boarding house back in 1880. After a fire damaged the building in 1914 Greek entrepreneur Charles A. Constantine bought itand converted the facility into a theater, showcasing all the big vaudeville acts of the day. Not a man to go partway on the remodel, he installed extra-large chairs, professional lighting and s top of the line heating and ventilating system. He even brought in an acoustical designer from New York City. The theater was a big hit but times changed so in 1926 Constantine replaced the stage with a movie screen. This grand showplace was second to none in its heyday but over the years it changed hands several times ending up vacant for ten years and filling with water from a leaky roof.
The theater was bound for the wrecking ball until in 1984 a group of citizens got together to save it. At the time Pawhuska was poor and money was hard to come by. Three years went by and nothing happned then the high school carpentry class began a remodel in 1987. Prisoners from nearby Connors Correctional Institute and volunteers helped the students remove debris, install new plumbing and electric service and restore the interior to its former glory.
The Constantine Theatre is now open for many events and for rentals. This local landmark deserves a visit so mark July 24th on your calendar and I’ll tell you why in a future column. Till then give em a call to find out what’s happening at the Constantine.Another story I’m fo0llowing from Pawhuska has to do with their Chamber of Commerce which I recently joined. I have belonged to the Chamber of Commerce in Bartlesville for over 20 years so you might ask why I joined in Pawhuska; here’s the scoop. The chambers aren’t just for businesses, they also support the people in their towns. Need directions., a phone number or information about a special event? The chamber is there and you don’t have to be a member to get their assistance. In Bartlesville Sherri Wilt and her staff are always friendly and helpful. The same is true in Pawhuska where they have just hired Kelly Bland to head the Chamber. Kelly will also be he Director of Tourism for Osage County so she will have a big job for sure but after meeting her last week I know she will be successful.
See ya in Pawhuska or till next time I’ll see ya down the road..