TWV Cancels 2021 “Haunted Coal Mine” Due to Covid | New
Theater West Virginia chief executive Scott Hill has announced that one of the theater company’s most profitable annual fundraisers has been called off in 2021 due to Covid.
The next haunted coal mine, which was set for six dates in October, will not return this year, due to a growing number of Covid cases. The event typically raises around $ 20,000 for TWV but was also canceled in 2020 for Covid.
Visitors go underground to the Beckley Coal Mine Exhibition on a train guided by retired coal miners.
“We not only depend on volunteers to go underground, but the gentlemen who drive the trains are all retired,” Hill said. “It’s one of the things that makes them really special.
“First, they know how to operate the trains and don’t hurt anyone. Second, they have been in real coal mines and are real living miners.
“Being retired means that they are part of that age group that Covid does not play with.”
The shutdown, which was voted on by the board of directors of the nonprofit TWV, will leave a funding gap, but Hill said the decision was made to protect the community and volunteers.
He asked anyone with ideas for a safer fundraising event to email him at [email protected]
Hill noted that arts groups across the country are scrambling to make up for canceled fundraisers in year two of the pandemic.
“I recommend you pick your favorite art group and try to help them out during the haunted season, have a ride or a treat,” he said. “We are open to any ideas that would help us get through this particular situation. “
TWV still plans to perform “A Christmas Carol” during the third week of December in the Black Knight Historic City Park Ballroom, if the Covid transmission rate is lower.
“We’re hoping the numbers will adjust and, as some people far smarter than me say, we’re going to have a peak, and it’s going to go down.
“I hope it goes down and we can enjoy ‘A Christmas Carol’.”
He added that TWV is planning productions for “Hatfields and McCoys”, two shows to be announced and three concerts, including Phil Dirt and the Dozers.
All productions are subject to Covid recommendations, he added.