Juanita Palmer, publicity coordinator for the Etherredge Center, was the guest speaker at the Jan. 15 meeting of the Senior Men's Club of Aiken.

Palmer traced the origin of the Etherredge Center from the earliest days when Cecil and Virginia Etherredge participated in the USC Aiken site selection and the arts/entertainment location, including helping to purchase the property. Upon their passing, the Etherredge estate bequeathed enough to construct what is today known as the Etherredge Center.

The Center is home to a variety of training and practice rooms from music to art and drama. The 687-seat main theater is probably the most well-known in Aiken, and since the completion of construction of the center in 1986, over three quarters of a million patrons have enjoyed programs at the Etherredge Center.

The smaller O'Connell Theatre hosts many plays written, directed, and starring students from the University. Ticket sales for all performances at the Etherredge Center help support student scholarships.

Recent upgrades to the box office capabilities allow patrons to purchase tickets online. Seat selection and printing of tickets can be done from home. The box office is still available for purchase of tickets by phone and tickets may be left “for will” call pick up just prior to the time of the performance.

Online information is available at web.usca.edu/etherredge-center or by calling the box office at 803-641-3305.

Palmer brought video clips from several spring-time events from Chamber Music to Jazz Ensembles appearing on the main stage. A Neil Simon comedy “Chapter Two” will be presented in the O'Connell theatre April 9 through 12 at 7:30 p.m. and also on April 13 at 2 p.m.

Palmer praised the volunteers that are now part of “Team Etherredge.” Starting with six volunteers the number has swelled to 60 which enables many in the community to help in the operation of the Etherredge Center in a variety of ways. Sponsorships for various programs are also available now by contacting Palmer.