Elwood (Elliott Cross, far right) puts his hand on his “friend” Harvey as his sister, Addison Cross (seated at desk) pleads to have him committed to a sanitarium for his unusual behavior. Also pictured, left to right, Chase Grinde, Hank Hegge, Kaitlin Bratland, Addison Cross, Josh Olerud and Elliott Cross.<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->
Elwood (Elliott Cross, far right) puts his hand on his “friend” Harvey as his sister, Addison Cross (seated at desk) pleads to have him committed to a sanitarium for his unusual behavior. Also pictured, left to right, Chase Grinde, Hank Hegge, Kaitlin Bratland, Addison Cross, Josh Olerud and Elliott Cross.

Looking for an evening of comedy and entertainment? Mark Nov. 16, 17th and 18th on the calendar for Spring Grove High School's production of "Harvey" by American playwright Mary Chase.

"Harvey is a true classic and it has been great working on this show again," said director, Sarah Schroeder. "Elwood Dowd is such a lovable character. Whenever I watch the play or the movie I can't help but smile and wish there were more people in the world like Elwood."

The play is about Elwood P. Dowd, an affable man, who claims to have an unseen and presumably imaginary friend, Harvey. Elwood describes Harvey as a six-foot, one-and-one-half-inch tall "pooka" resembling an anthropomorphic rabbit.

In Irish folklore pooka can take many shapes. They are animals that appear to humans and can talk. 

Elwood introduces Harvey to everyone he meets. Elwood's social-climbing sister, Veta, increasingly finds his eccentric behavior embarrassing. She decides to have him committed to a sanitarium to spare her and her daughter, Myrtle Mae, from future embarrassment. When they arrive at the sanitarium, a comedy of errors ensues.

The cast has been practicing since early October in the mornings before school or in the evenings.

"It has been challenging to find a time to practice with the students' busy schedules," commented Schroeder.

"But they have made the commitment to the production and are working hard on final preparations of the show."

Spring Grove School's production of Harvey includes cast members: Kaitlin Bratland as Myrtle Mae Simmons, Addison Cross as Veta Louise Simmons, Elliott Cross as Elwood P. Dowd, Stine Myrah as Ethel Chauvene, Angel Spinden as Ruth Kelly, RN, Josh Olerud as Duane Wilson, Chase Grinde as Dr. Sanderson, Hank Hegge as Dr. Chumley, Kayla Hahn as Betty Chumley, Devon Nerstad as Judge Gaffney, and Jacob Lenning as E.J. Lofgren. Lexi Rains is the stage manager.

Harvey features four seniors who have all been very active in the Spring Grove Drama Department.

Addison Cross has been in numerous plays at the school and also at Ye Olde Opera House. She has been in the One Act Competition since 2008.

Josh Olerud has also been in several fall plays and One Act competitions. He played a memorable character, Conrad Birdie, in last year's school musical, "Bye, Bye Birdie."

Kayla Hahn has been a regular on stage as well. Last year, she starred in the One Act play, "Happily Ever After?" as Cinderella.

Angel Spinden has also been a staple in One Act competitions and fall productions. She has been in every One Act Play since 2009.

"All four of these seniors were in the most successful one act in recent history, 'A Play with Words', which placed second at Sub-section and competed at Section in 2010," said Schroeder.

"These seniors will be missed next year, and I hope to see them again in this year's One Act Play."

These seniors and rest of the cast will take the stage in the Spring Grove School gymnasium on Friday, Nov. 16 at 7:30 p.m. There are also performances on Saturday, Nov. 17 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 18 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 for adults, $4 for students and can be purchased at the door.