Bob Letson stars as Scrooge in South Peninsula Hospital Long Term Care Unit’s production of “A Long Term Christmas Carol.”-Photo by McKibben Jackinsky, Homer News

Hospital presents Christmas classic with a Long Term Care Unit twist

Putting their stamp on the Christmas holiday, South Peninsula Hospital staff and Long Term Care residents perform the one-of-a-kind “A Long Term Christmas Carol” this Saturday and Sunday. Performances are at 3 p.m. in the Long Term Care Day Room at the hospital.

The production is an opportunity for the play-going public to see Bob Letson, hospital CEO, as he’s never seen. Between the makeup and costume and the selfish, uncaring persona he adopts, Letson’s Scrooge clearly instills fear in other characters in the play. Cracks in his prickly armor begin to show, however, when the “dreadful apparition” of Marlene, his late partner, played by LTC unit director Sue Shover, appears.

From there on, it’s a four-act unraveling of the “squeezing, wrenching, grasping scraping, covetous, old sinner” — a description of Scrooge provided by narrator Gary Mayforth — as Scrooge is given visions of himself as he was and the devastation he will cause in the future.

Charles Dickens wrote “A Christmas Carol” in 1843, but the modern, made-to-fit Long Term Care spin is the handiwork of Luzma Alcaraz, a clerk in the hospital’s Long Term Care Unit.

“I do a lot of activities, usually ones people don’t like to do, like karaoke. I’m not shy,” said Alcaraz of her efforts to give Long Term Care residents plenty to do. “One day I thought we should do a play, and I kind of went with it.”

Her rewrite of the holiday favorite includes a cast of 15 that draws on the theatrical talents of LTC residents and hospital staff, as well as one puppy. 

“Plus, there are a dozen choir and violinists and pianists and additional musicians,” said Derotha Ferraro, SPH spokesperson.

Costumes and props were donated or purchased at discounted prices from the Salvation Army and Value Village. Many employees also sewed their costumes, helped create props and shifted schedules in order to be part of the performances.

“At first residents were hesitant and now they are really involved and engaged, spending time outside of rehearsal practicing their lines and talking about the show,” said Ferraro. “They have so much life in them and so much personality to share, that (Alcaraz) decided to do this and give them a new venue to perform and engage.”

The performances are free and open to the public.

“It’s not a big as the Nutcracker, but it’s pretty darn good for the first time out,” said Ferraro.

McKibben Jackinsky can be reached at mckibben.jackinsky@homernews.com.

More in News

Dollynda Phelps discusses current issues in the cannabis industry with local business owners on Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018, in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)
Cannabis industry meeting raises concerns over Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office

Cannabis cultivators, retailers and consumers squeezed into a small Kenai living room… Continue reading

The wall of the Red Chris tailings pond is a little less than 350 feet, or about the height of a 35-story building. It follows the same design as the Mount Polley tailings dam, which broke in 2014, sending 24 million cubic meters of toxic mine tailings into the Fraser River watershed. It is designed, however, to hold 305 million cubic meters of mine waste — seven times more than Mount Polley. Both mines are owned by Imperial Metals. (Courtesy Photo | Garth Lenz via Salmon State)
Transboundary mine faces $200-million cash crunch

With a strike, falling copper prices and more than $554-million ($723 million… Continue reading

Niko Mogar is shown in a June 2018 booking photo. (Photo provided, Homer Police)
Police arrest Homer area thief on new counts

A man charged last month with burglary and vehicle theft faces new… Continue reading

Homer area residents listen to the Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018 Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting at Homer City Hall in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Residents talk Kachemak Selo school at assembly

While no major action was taken at Tuesday’s Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly… Continue reading

Ken Castner III answers a question at a city council and mayoral candidate forum Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018 at Alice’s Champagne Palace in Homer, Alaska. Castner is running for Homer mayor. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Castner running for mayor to promote unity

Although Ken Castner has served on numerous city commissions, committees and task… Continue reading

Homer area school announcements

Homer High School Friday — Homecoming football game against Seward High School… Continue reading

David Lewis, a former member of the Homer City Council, makes his final remarks during his last meeting as a council member Monday, Oct. 9, 2017 in Cowles Council Chambers in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Lewis takes second try at Homer mayor

Veteran Homer City Council member David Lewis will take another run for… Continue reading

Borough elections 2018: What you need to know

In between the August primary election and the November general election, Homer… Continue reading

Supreme Court finds Griswold due process rights violated

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include a comment from… Continue reading

Most Read