Kindleberger Summer Festival Alumni Committee
We are an informal volunteer group of Festival alumni and friends who are coming together to celebrate the past, present, and future of the Kindleberger Summer Festival of the Performing Arts. We came together with our focus on developing relationships and contributing to the celebration of the Festival’s 40th anniversary on July 9, 2022. We continue to seek to bring past and present participants together, and to thank the community of Parchment and greater Kalamazoo, MI for 40+ years of support for the Festival!
- Tell the story of why community art matters and the impact the Festival has had on the lives of many.
- Bring past and present supporters together to thank the community for 40+ years of support for the Festival.
Ben H. Tanis Passed Away Tuesday, December 27, 2022.
The Kindleberger Summer Festival of the Performing Arts committee would like to take this time to remember beloved community member Ben Tanis, who has recently passed away. Mr. Tanis was an adored wood shop teacher in the Parchment School District for many years and continued his service in the community in many other ways after he retired. He did so much for the Summer Festival of the Performing Arts as well, helping design and build wonderful sets for the plays and musicals.
Zen Campbell, Kindleberger Summer Festival of the Performing Arts originator, shared this tribute:
“Ben Tanis joined the Kindleberger Summer Festival during the summer of 1985, as we produced our first musical, The Music Man. He played a traveling salesman in the cast, and was a critical guide and worker on our set-building crew, establishing from the outset that he was both a player and a vital worker–roles that would continue for many years. Ben exemplified the creative spirit at the core of the Festival: building community through the arts.
And, as many within this community have enjoyed, his involvement was a family event, with his daughters, then grandchildren taking their places each summer in our beautiful park. Ben’s legacy will endure through the lives of children taught in the Parchment Schools, as well as so many touched by his generous creativity as it was expressed and shared through Kindleberger Arts.
Thank you, Ben. It was wonderful to see you again this past year; you will always be a part of the Kindleberger Summer Festival.”