PARIS — Rehearsals began Thursday night for the annual Christmas for Teens musical fundraiser.
The show, now in its 11th year, usually plays to a sold-out audience and raises about $4,000 to help buy Christmas presents for economically-eligible and homeless teenagers in the Oxford Hills area.
“It is crucial to us,” said Jean Delamater of the program sponsor, Rigthstart Inc.
The Dec. 3 performance, which will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School auditorium, is the single largest fundraiser of the program, she said.
Tickets are available from chorus members, at the door and at Books N Things on Main Street in Norway.
Cynthia Wescott, a veteran musical director and retired teacher, will lead the all-volunteer community chorus.
“It’s an unusual year. We’re going to share the program with the Downeasters,” said Wescott of the 2009 Northeastern District Champion Barbershop quartet group. “They were looking for a charity and I said I’ve got one for you. It just makes it very interesting.”
Christmas For Teens is a program of Rightstart Inc., a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization.
“Christmas for Teens helps provide Christmas for deserving teens in the eight towns of the Oxford Hills,” Delamater said.
She said teenagers must meet economic guidelines, and be full-time students at the Oxford Hills Middle School or Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School or Oxford Hills Technical School.
“Their requests often include clothing, personal care items, music, games, books, gift certificates, etc. We also serve our homeless teens, meeting the same requirements,” she said.
Applications for the program are available at Community Concepts in Paris, and at the guidance departments of the middle school and high school. For further information, contact Delamater at 539-4587 or send donations and applications to Christmas for Teens, care of Rightstart Inc., P.O. Box 726, Norway, ME 04256.
“Christmas is sharing and we’re sharing the program and everyone is sharing their talents,” Wescott said of the upcoming performance.