Easter Pageant

History of "The Road to Redemption"

The Scott County Easter Pageant, "The Road to Redemption", began in 1971 at a location two miles north of the present site in Scott Lake State Park. With a borrowed script, costumes, and lights from the Antioch Methodist Church in Buttermilk, Kansas, the first pageant was presented. People in Scott County loaned lights, electrical cords, animals and equipment, in addition to their gifts of time and money to make the pageant possible. The first narration was live, with the light switch box laying on the ground, powered by a borrowed generator. But the production went very well because the people of Scott County had worked hard and given much of themselves, and so God had blessed them abundantly.

The whole idea began one Sunday morning when Gwen Huck's pastor mentioned to her that perhaps some kind of Easter sunrise play could be held on the football field. Larry Huck, her husband, and the high school football coach at the time, said the field would be under construction during Easter, having a new crown put on the field. Gwen knew her father-in-law had a script of a pageant for which he had narrated several years before. She acquired the script, met with the Ministerial Alliance, decided the state park was the best setting and everything was underway. The script has been revised since then, but Scott County will always be grateful to the people of the Antioch Methodist Church in Buttermilk, who generously helped the pageant get started.

In 1973, the pageant was moved to the present location to allow for better parking facilities. The natural outcroppings and rock formations at the new location made the pageant more beautiful and realistic. Electricity was made available and as a result, more lights were added and improvements made to the sound system. An old sheep shack was donated and repaired to provide a control room for the lights, music, narration, and sound mixer. The narration was put on reel-to-reel tape and background music was recorded on cassettes.

The crowds continued to grow with each performance, so the men of the Scott City Police Department and FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) members began to assist with the parking.

Major properties were added when the late Fr. J.J. Dreher built a new tomb, crosses, stretcher, tripods for the spotlights, and light boxes in 1975. After the original temple front crumpled in a rain storm (due to the fact that the pillars were constructed from cardboard carpet rolls), Fr. Dreher built a new temple from donated plastic irrigation pipe.

In 1976, with manpower and machines furnished by our Scott County men, and with Fr. Dreher's design, the cinder block control room was built. This was a major step in pageant production, enabling the crew to coordinate the pageant with better precision.

The cast and crew has grown from 80 to 200 people over the history of the Easter Pageant. They are made up of volunteers from many churches all over Scott County. Those who participate enjoy a close Christian fellowship, along with the gratifying work. The goal the crew focuses upon is to follow the scriptures as closely as possible, make the life of Jesus more real to themselves and others, and, ultimately, to glorify God.

The pageant was financed during the early years by donations from individuals, churches, and businesses. It is now supported by a free-will offering taken at the intermission of the pageant.

Gwen Huck and her daughter, Suzanne Griffith, direct the pageant. Gwen is the wife of Larry, a farmer and rancher, and light control man for the pageant.  Suzanne is married to Chad Griffith.  They farm and ranch in the state park area, very near to the pageant site.

"Getting the pageant started just seemed like something God wanted me to do. Through all the experience of working on the pageant, God had taught me about Himself and myself as well. I always ask God to use the pageant to make the life of Jesus more real for those who participate and those who attend," stated Gwen.

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