The Summer Place, Inc. (or Summer Place Theatre as it has come to be known) got it's start back in 1966 as a way to keep students active and their acting skills sharp over the summer months.
It was founded by Donald "Doc" Shanower, then Dean of Theatre at North Central College in 1966. 2016 was our 50th season, and we dedicated our shows to Doc. Sadly, we lost Doc in 2015, just shy of our big 50th anniversary. We miss you, and most of all we thank you for creating this long lasting Naperville institution.
Our Mission Statement:
The Summer Place, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit, volunteer-supported community theatre, based in the Naperville area, strives to provide professional quality year round theatre arts entertainment. We are committed to providing:
- A supportive and collaborative environment for artists;
- High quality, culturally enriching entertainment to the community;
- Educational opportunities for all ages through mentoring and performance based participation.
The Summer Place, Inc. gets funding through ticket sales, advertising sales, concessions proceeds, grants, and the generous donations of our patrons.
The bulk of our expenses go towards royalty fees, set building costs, and, depending on the production, costuming. To a far lesser extent we spend money on honorariums for our directors and musicians. Our actors do not get paid. For that matter, our actors don't pay us for the opportunity to act in our shows, although of late they have paid a script and costume fee to help defray those costs. Our producers, who are pulled from our Board of Directors, are not paid to produce the shows, nor are any of our Board Members or Officers paid for their service.
Summer Place is a Community Theater. It provides a great deal to Naperville: the opportunity to gather and create a work of art and to share that work with its citizens at a very low cost.
One of our largest supporters is Naperville itself. The Naperville Park District provides rooms for us to meet and rehearse and is a partner with us for Ghost Stories in the fall, and Naperville School District 203 provides our theatre venue during the summer: Naperville Central High School Auditorium.