2023-10-25 Board Meeting Minutes

Date :  2023, October 25

Board members present:

XAlex NightXJered Biard
EXBrad StoryXRobby Burt
XJulie UlmerXAnn Glenn
XBill HaysXJessica Kropp
EXLinda G. JohnsonXRobert Canterbury
XLamar AustinExRudi Timmerman
XAmanda BakerExGini Burt

Guests: Judy Kropp, Zeke McPherson, Makayla Barber

Meeting called to order at 5:30 PM by President Alex Night

  • Secretary’s Report: The minutes from the previous meeting were sent out by email with no corrections.  Ann moved we accept as submitted.  Robert seconded the motion and the minutes were approved.
  • Treasurer’s Report:    Arvest  (general fund)   $3617.04      

Union Bank  (Building)      $12,874.87 

                                                First Financial  (concessions)  $2008.83

Jered mentioned that all expenses for CLUE have been met, so all the tickets sales for the second weekend will be profit.              

  • Office Report—Alex – Alex is doing a great job at securing more memberships every month.  Total of 3 new season ticket holders and two individual memberships were added this month.
  • Bensons – we will send out an email with basic information for Board members to consider.  No action was taken at the meeting because several interested parties could not attend this meeting.
  • Committees:  Alex was unable to make changes or add members directly after elections in May because there was so much activity surrounding that time.  Here is the updated committee report as of this date:

MEMBERSHIP : ALEX NIGHT, chair; members Bill Hays, Lamar Austin, Robert Canterbury, and Zeke McPherson.

 SOCIAL: LINDA JOHNSON, chair; members Anna Burt, Gini Burt, Ladonna Barber, Mikayla Barber, Sharon Hose, Silas Baker, and Zeke McPherson.

BOX OFFICE: AMANDA BAKER, chair; members Ann Glenn, Linda Johnson, Silas Baker 

HOUSE: BRAD STOREY, chair; members Jered Biard, Robby Burt, Robert Canterbury

 PUBLICITY: JULIE ULMER, chair; members, Alex Night, Stef Moore, Rudi Timmerman, Zeke McPherson 

FINANCIAL: BILL HAYS, chair; members Jered Biard, Trixie Ingram

PROGRAM: JERED BIARD, chair; members Alex Night, Ann Glenn, Ladonna Barber, Judy Kropp 

COSTUMES: LINDA JOHNSON, chair; members Ann Glenn, Judy Kropp, Psalm Wistrand, Sharon Hose

PLAY SELECTION: JUDY KROPP, chair; members Alex Night, Ann Glenn, Brad Storey, Jessica Kropp, Julie Ulmer, Lamar Austin

BENSONS: ALEX NIGHT, chair; members include the entire board, with the understanding that some will be able to commit more time than others.  But everyone is encouraged to participate as they can. 

I.T.: JERED BIARD, chair; members Alex Night and Robert Canterbury.

TICKET PRICING: JERED BIARD, chair; members, Ann Glenn, Alex Night, Amanda Baker, Jessica Kropp, Judy Kropp, Julie Ulmer, Linda Johnson 

CONCESSIONS: BILL HAYS, chair; members Jered Biard, Kristie Kenyon Ortiz, Makayla Barber

  • Bike Trails:  Alex met with an organizer from NW AR (?DNA of Place?) who wants to involve all the downtown businesses in the growth expected in our area from the bike trails slated to be constructed.  The organizer wants us to make more connections with other businesses, particularly in downtown Mena. This organizer has experience with other theaters in the state.  He met with Alex and will come back in Nov. and Dec. More of his suggestions included collaborating with The Ouachitas (as we are planning with “The Gift of the Magi.”)  Another suggestion he had was to have a cheese and wine evening on opening nights for our season ticket membership in coordination with The Ouachitas.  They also encouraged us to have more ‘set” prices for theater rental that would give us more monetary protection.
  • Artistic Director Report and Play Selection Committee —Judy
  • Judy encouraged us all to see CLUE and invite friends. 
  • Gift of the Magi seating is determined for The Ouachitas, the cast is selected and rehearsing.  The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge is also cast and assistant director to Brad Storey is Becky Tulley,
  • The “ballpark figure” for royalties and expenses for The Little Mermaid is predicted to be around $5000. We have secured the rights for the musical, and we will pay the balance on it after Amanda’s play in February. 
  • Results of ticket meeting – It was suggested by the committee to raise our price to $15 for adults and $10 for students and seniors for our regular seasonal plays.  For Musicals, due to the high costs of production, it was suggested to go to $20 per adult and $15 per senior/student.  Regarding season ticket prices, it was suggested we charge $65 for each adult, $55 for each senior/student.  Individual season tickets plus memberships are $75 per adult and $65 for seniors/students.  Family memberships have proved challenging in the past, so it was ultimately decided to suggest a season pass of $65 per adult (up to two adults living in the household) and $45 for each child.  This would include all plays in the regular season (4 shows). 
  • There was a question of whether we needed to have the membership vote on ticket prices, but the answer is no.  Ticket prices fall within the standing rule part of the constitution, therefore under board discretion and voting.  
  • Judy asked for a motion to increase to the new recommended ticket price increase.  Bill made the motion and Jessica seconded it.
  • The discussion that followed included the fact that the OLT Board can also change prices at their discretion by voting. We discussed that parents can no longer buy $2 seats to see their children in popular shows at a highly discounted rate that has been known to keep people with season tickets out of full capacity theater crowds.  Discussion also allowed that we will formally restrict the use of a season pass to one performance per show.  A second show will require another ticket purchase.  Two more issues were discussed, including giving military personnel the same discounted ticket as well as students and seniors.  It was also decided to include raising the senior discount age from 55 to 60 years old. Bill made an addendum to the preceding motion that we add these changes to the ticket pricing increases. It was seconded by Jessica and the issue passed unamiounsously. 
  • Jered suggested those going out of town to nearby places such as Mt. Ida (or even farther areas) could also take posters to help with publicity of our local shows.
  • To be clear, the pricing of our holiday shows (which are not part of the regular season) will be as follows:  The Gift of the Magi is $10 per person (no discounts) and The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge will be our first play reflecting new prices, $15 for adults and $10 for students, seniors, and military. 
  • The pricing on the website should include these decisions.
  • House—Brad 
  • Alex read an update from Brad on a previously discussed confidential matter.
  • Judy –
  • The Play Selection committee has read Arsenic and Old Lace proposed by Amanda and recommended it unanimously.  Jessica motioned we accept the recommendation, Lamar seconded it. Discussion followed. The motion passed unanimously. 
  • After Judy gets royalty numbers for Arsenic and Old Lace, she will make deposits. All plays can now be publicized. 
  • IT Report—Jered
  • Jered has some projects he will get done before the holiday shows.  He anticipates some changes in the website at the beginning of the new year.
  • We will need a second printer at some point.
  • Box office—Amanda
  • Amanda appreciates Ann for helping out at the box office. Judy will help this weekend at Clue.
  • Publicity—Julie – 
  • We are up to date on ads for both papers.
  • An article appearing Nov. 1 or 8 in both papers will advertise the cast announcements for the two holiday productions.  The cast list has been published on Facebook.  We are continuing to push Clue hard on social media accounts, feedback has been good from the community. 
  • When we get our next posters ready, Judy has organized the places where to put them, and will give us our assignments.  Thank you, Judy!
  1. Readers Theatre – Ann
  2. Rehearsals are underway for The Gift of the Magi.  They will rehearse/perform for the other players at the Lyric Players meeting this coming Saturday.
  3. New Business: 


  • There appears to be a problem with expired candy and “flat” soda pop at the shows.  Perhaps we need a system of rotation of stock to prevent stale candy and drinks.
  • Jered suggested that we need a point-of-sale system to know what products are selling. 
  • Nachoes are suggested as a possible addition to the concession “menu.”  There was quite a bit of push back on that, mainly considering the messiness involved with the snack.  Also, noise distraction, unpleasant smell to some, and people looking at their food rather than the performance were mentioned as reasons not to pursue. No action was taken.
  • Popcorn noise is even a problem for some.  Makyla mentioned concerns regarding food safety involved with perishable products, especially with hot dogs (which were also mentioned) and nachos. 
  • Bill made a motion that we cut holes in the top of the cabinet so patrons can see what we have in display.  Judy seconded.  Nine yay and one nay.  Motion passed.  
  • Pre -packaged chips were mentioned, but Bill told us they didn’t sell at all well in a previous attempt.  Candy, popcorn, and drinks have always the most popular with audiences.
  •  Judy made a motion that we go to bottled drinks instead of using 2 liter cokes. ???? seconded and the motion passed.
  •  We will need to use more space in the concessions stand for refrigeration and we also won’t need the ice machine anymore. 
  • It became clear concession issues are requiring a lot of attention and the concessions committee (plus interested people) needs to meet and come up with a plan before our Christmas shows which begin on December 10th.  It was suggested they try to come up with a limited choice of drinks and candy, but enough quantities to last through a show. The charge to the concessions committee is to narrow choices and come up with a major plan.  It would be good if they could report back some ideas before our next meeting on November 15th.  We are looking to Bill to organize a meeting as soon as possible.
  • Bill told us that the big refillable boxes of popcorn are no longer going to be honored.  Small boxes were suggested instead of bags, but he also said they are cost prohibitive.  

More New Business – Centennial year for OLT

  • October 2023 marks the beginning of the Centennial Year of the Lyric Theatre.  What are we going to do to commemorate this historic year?
  • It was suggested that we begin by coming up with a banner logo to fit over our OLT logo that states “100 Years at the Lyric” or something like that.  We would like to see it on all our publicity wherever the logo is present to go into 2024. No one was assigned to do this.  Julie will pursue talking to her committee about getting someone to make up our new logo for this and pursue other interest in the Centennial project.
  • Some may be interested in doing a program of some sort, but there was not time to address this any further as there was still pressing new business to discuss.

More New BusinessASCAP Coverage

  • Jered let us know that our current ASCAP licensure to play recorded music in our theatre has more limited coverage than we thought.  We are likely going to need to pay for the upgrade to meet our musical needs.
  • We have already paid for this year, so we need to adjust as necessary for now and pursue upgrading when the time comes in 2024.

12.   Adjournment

A motion made by Jessica to adjourn and was seconded by Ann.       

The meeting adjourned around 7:00 PM.

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