Summer Stage’s most loyal fan?

Connie Cerone and two of her four granddaughters before “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.”

 

Can you imagine attending every Summer Stage show in 37 years? Connie Cerone can…well almost!

Connie Cerone of Springfield is a big fan of Upper Darby Summer Stage. Perhaps our most loyal! She may hold the record for seeing the most Summer Stage shows in our 37 year history!

Connie started attending the shows in 1976, the first season of Summer Stage. She admits she missed the very first show. She was told about the program by her mother-in-law who happened to catch “The Magic of America.” That’s when 87 performers took to the stage in a bicentennial tribute to America written by Terri Colgan and a young fellow named Harry Dietzler.

Being introduced to Summer Stage was “love at first show” for Connie. She instantly fell in love with everything about the program and was grateful to her mother-in-law for the tip. “I always say it’s the best thing she ever did for me!” adds Connie with a hearty laugh.

Connie’s mother-in-law told her about Summer Stage after she saw the very first show, “The Magic of America” in 1976. “I always say it’s the best thing she ever did for me!”

She missed a show in 1979 but she had a very good excuse. She was giving birth to her daughter, Nicole. “But,” she is quick to point out, “I made it to the Mainstage show that year!”

Connie graduated from Upper Darby High School and moved to Springfield about 30 years ago. She began attending the shows as a young woman and later, when her daughters were young, she brought them to the shows. Her second daughter, Nicole, participated in the program performing in Children’s Theater shows and later as a Shooting Star. She participated from the time she was ten years old until she was twenty years old, from 1988 to 1989.

At Summer Stage “The greatest thing for my daughter Nicole is she got to meet kids from all over, not just her own little community. She has friends from all over Pennsylvania, a lot of them she met through Summer Stage,” said Connie. “And they’re still friends all these years later.”

As a mother, Connie was thrilled with the friends her daughter made at Summer Stage. “If I could say one thing about Summer Stage, of course the talent, but the nicest group of kids and young people I’ve ever seen in my life. They are just amazing.”

Now a grandmother of four girls, Connie brings her granddaughters to see the shows. “It’s a pleasure to take my grandchildren there because I know it’s going to be a positive experience in every way.”

When the kids perform “you can feel the warmth, you can see the sincerity. You can see it in their smiles,” added Connie. “When you talk to them, they look you in the eye. You can see they are interested in what you say. I just love it. It kind of restores your faith in the younger generation.”

For Connie, the summer just isn’t summer without Summer Stage. “It’s been a big part of my life and I’m very, very happy it’s been available to me and my family.” Connie can’t wait to see the final show of our 37th season, “A Disney Spectacular.” Connie is happy to report that attending most every show in 37 years has been “an incredible journey.”

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