Local theater celebrates swashbuckling cinema hit

Heather Scarlett

Seven year old Josh Tomaiko colors a pirate flag with his mother Michelle Tomaiko Saturday at the Kent Plaza Theater. The movie theater hosted a kids event during the opening weekend of The Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man’s Chest. Children could col

Credit: Steve Schirra

       As children came through the double doors of the Kent Plaza Theater on July 8, they found themselves on the site of a pirate cove complete with black balloons, pirate flags, anchors, monkeys, parrots and a treasure chest.

The Pirate Fair was held from noon to 2:30 p.m. to celebrate the opening of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest. Personnel manager Aubree Wyatt and promotions manger Sarah Isackila-Vega came up with the idea for the event, which was designed to promote the privately owned theater and to bring it closer to the community, Wyatt said.

Children were able to enjoy booths of pirate activities run by employees dressed to the hilt in pirate attire. Festivities included temporary tattoos, balloon swords, hand-hook making (consisting of silver hooks attached to cups), and a station where children could color pirate flags.

“I volunteer to dress up every time there is an event because I love it,” said Travis Drum, who has been a theater employee for 2 1?2 years.

Children and parents shared their own swashbuckling adventures as they waited for the much-anticipated movie to begin. Hannah Wyatt, 8, and her sister Sarah, 6, dueled with their balloon swords. As Sarah waited in line to get an eyepatch, she said her favorite Pirates character was Elizabeth Swann.

Josh Tomaiko, 7 1?2, said Jack Sparrow was his favorite “because he’s the main character.” Josh and his mother had come to the movie opening dressed as pirates in celebration of the movie.

One of the main events was a flag-making contest. The contest had eight entries, with designs ranging from large cut-outs of skulls and cross bones to hand-drawn pictures of Captain Jack Sparrow.

First place winner Jessica Miller’s black and yellow flag incorporated a treasure chest with a cross bones symbol and the opening date of the movie. She received four free movie passes and a pirate “goodie bag” with candy and pirate memorabilia.

Second place winner Tatiana Cruise, 9, and third place winner Allison Madden, 9, also received free movie passes and a goodie bags.

“I like the (interaction) with the kids. It’s fun for them to do something rather then sit in a movie for two or three hours,” said theater employee Lindsey Gauer.

Contact general assignment reporter Heather Scarlett at [email protected].