CLEAR LAKE | Oscar Wilde's “The Importance of Being Earnest” will be presented on the lawn at Central Gardens starting tonight.

Performances are 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday at Central Gardens, 800 Second Ave. N. in Clear Lake.

“We are very excited about this unique outdoor performing arts experience,” said Gail Harringa, board member of Central Gardens. "It should be a lot of fun for everyone.”

Patrons are encouraged to bring blankets and folding lawn chairs. They may also bring food and non-alcoholic beverages to enjoy before the show and during intermission. 

General admission tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Children 14 years old and younger will be admitted free when accompanied by an adult.

Tickets are on sale at the Clear Lake Arts Center, 17 S. Fourth St., and the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, 205 Main Ave., both in downtown Clear Lake.

This witty and buoyant comedy of manners is a reflection of 19th century British society. "The Importance of Being Earnest" has delighted audiences since its first performance in 1895.

As Jack Worthing’s double life catches up with him, problems are resolved in extremely charming and unexpected ways and everyone discovers the importance of being earnest.

This outdoor production, being directed by North Iowa native Rachelle Moeller, is the first joint venture for Central Gardens of North Iowa and the Clear Lake Arts Center.

Cast members are Scott Demro as John Worthing (Jack), Christopher Phalen as Algernon Moncrieff (Algy), Dean Hess as Rev. Canon Chasuble, James "Jim" Latham as Lane, Mary Alexander as Lady Bracknell, Annie Moore as Gwendoline Fairfax, Lauren Hewitt as Cecily Cardew, Eley Schmidt as Miss Prism, Craig Rule as Merriman and Elliott Neuberger as the Servant.

Sponsors are CL-Tel, Barry and Marsha Cory, Demro Orthodontics, LeAnn Hewitt and family, John and Mary Pappajohn, Joann Sargent, Steve and Vicki Sukup, with special mention to Fareway Foods Inc. of Clear Lake and O. Jay and Pat Tomson.

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