Valley Lines Up to Salute Native Son

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Paul Dooley and Mollie Ringwald in “Sixteen Candles”

The Mid-Ohio Valley is getting ready to salute one of its most successful stars of stage and screen. Paul Dooley, who was born in Parkersburg and raised in Vienna, will be honored in various events on March 23 and 24. Dooley has appeared in scores of movies and hundreds of television commercials, in addition to many plays over the years.

On Friday, March 23, he will be in-residence at his alma mater, Parkersburg High School, where he will do a general session with students from all over the valley starting at 11am. After a break for lunch, he will do a session with students interested in theater and the arts, starting at about 1pm.

Students and teachers from schools throughout the Mid-Ohio Valley -- Ohio and West Virginia alike -- who are interested in taking part in this event, should make reservations through the Smoot Theatre at 304-422-7529 (-PLAY) or by e-mailing Seating is limited. Reservations for either of these sessions must be made by Friday, March 16. Students from schools located outside of Wood County can eat lunch at PHS on Friday, March 23, for one dollar.

On Friday evening, Dooley’s first major movie “Breaking Away,” will be shown at the Smoot Theater. This was one of the last movies shown at the Smoot when it was a movie theater. Show time is 7pm. Admission is free.

On Saturday morning, March 24, the Parkersburg Art Center will host “Breakfast with the Bunny.” For $5 per breakfast, kids and parents can come to the Art Center for a hearty pancakes-and-sausage breakfast, a coloring project, and to have their pictures taken with the Easter Bunny. This event is being done in cooperation with Bob Evans Restaurants and Broughton Foods. It begins at 9am and ends at 11am.

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Al Pacino(left), Paul Dooley(center), and Hillary Swank (right) in “Insomnia”

Then at 11am, another of Paul Dooley’s movies, will be shown at the Parkersburg Actors Guild, right across the street from the Art Center. This one is aimed at kids and the young-at-heart. It’s all about a famous comic strip character. Here’s a hint: it stars the hilarious Robin Williams in the title role and Dooley as his hamburger-loving compatriot. There is no admission fee.

Area residents are encouraged to come out and see Dooley as the grand marshal of the Parkersburg Easter Parade. It steps off from behind PHS at 2pm on Saturday and makes its way down Market Street.

At 7pm Saturday evening, the Smoot Theatre will show another of Dooley’s films, “A Wedding.” There is no admission fee.

This event is being sponsored by The Parkersburg Actors Guild, The Parkersburg Art Center, The Parkersburg Easter Parade Committee, and the Blennerhassett Hotel.

Paul Dooley Events
Friday, March 23rd - PHS 11am-2pm
“Breaking Away”, Smoot Theatre, 7:00pm

Saturday March 24th - Breakfast with The Bunny, Art Center, 9am
Movie at the Art Center, 11:00am
Easter Parade, starts at 2:00pm
“A Wedding,” Smoot Theatre 7:00pm

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Paul Dooley, earlier in his career, when he was doing stand-up comedy

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Paul Dooley (left) as “Wimpy” and Robin Williams as the title character in the movie “Popeye”

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Paul Dooley and Julia Roberts in “Runaway Bride”

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