Sleighbell Events at the Ramsdell


Lakeside Club’s Festival of Trees & Holiday Décor
Friday, Dec 3 – 1pm–8pm
Saturday, Dec 4 – 11am-8pm

Come view & bid on creatively decorated Christmas trees, wreaths, gift baskets, and seasonal decor designed by local holiday enthusiasts. “Buy it Now” options are available. Bring canned goods to vote for your favorite entry for the “People’s Choice” award. Canned goods will be donated to Matthew 25:35 Food Pantry.  Bring unwrapped toys for Five CAPs “Toys for Tots/Gifts for Teens”.  Enter for a prize drawing with each toy donated.  All proceeds from Festival of Trees & Holiday Decor will go to Manistee County Humane Society’s Homeward Bound Animal Shelter and the Armory Youth Project.  Bidding for the event closes on December 4 at 8:00 pm.   “The Nutcracker Ballet”  opens at 8 pm at the Ramsdell Theatre. Come early to visit the Festival of Trees & Holiday Decor.  For more information please call (906) 440-6770 or email us
Admission: Donation – $1 minimum

Tours of the Ramsdell Theatre
(Theatre Lobby)
Friday, Dec 3 – 2pm-4pm
Saturday, Dec 4 – 2pm-4pm

Tour the historic Ramsdell Theatre! Learn about critical figures such as Thomas Jefferson Ramsdell, James Earl Jones, and Toni Trucks! Explore the architectural beauty that the Ramsdell Theatre has offered the community for over 100 years. The box office will open at 1pm to purchase tour tickets.
Admission: $5

Special Box Office Hours
(Theatre Lobby)
Friday, Dec 3 – 1pm-5pm & 7pm-8pm
Saturday, Dec 4 – 1pm-5pm & 7pm-8pm

The Nutcracker Ballet
Friday, Dec 3 – 8pm
Saturday, Dec 4 – 8pm
Sunday, Dec 5 – 2pm

Tchaikovsky’s original ballet premiered in 1892 and was staged by Russian choreographer Marius Petipa. Dancers from Manistee, Mason and Benzie counties present Tchaikovsky’s holiday classic “The Nutcracker Ballet ” at the Historic Ramsdell Theatre in Manistee. The production is a collaborative Holiday celebration directed by Ingrid Bond and involves over 150 cast members and volunteers from across county lines. Tschaikovsky’s score and the ballet premiered at nearly the same time the Ramsdell was built. That’s why this version is set in the Victorian era heyday–to enable the audience to see some of the unique features of the Ramsdell stage. The brief solo called, “Dance of the SugarPlum Fairy ” is the original Marius Petipa choreography. It was gifted to Ingrid through Carol Greenaway, a Frankfort native who had an incredible ballet career. The solo was taught and gifted to her by the legendary Alexandra Danilova. Carol is a master teacher and greatly looks forward to collaborating with Ingrid Bond and the Ramsdell on this project.  To purchase tickets click here. 
Admission: $10 – $30 Per PersonView Post

Nutcracker Boutique
(Hardy Hall)
Friday, Dec 3 – Noon-4:30pm & 7pm-9:30pm
Saturday, Dec 4 – Noon-4:30pm & 7pm-9:30pm
Sunday, Dec 5 – 1-3:30pm

Browse the Nutcracker Boutique for the perfect holiday gift for you or your loved one! 

First Americans 
(Hardy Hall)
Friday, Dec 3 – Noon-5pm
Saturday, Dec 4 – Noon-5pm
The Ramsdell Regional Center for the Arts, listed in the National Register of Historic Places, is in Manistee, Michigan/Naaminitigong-Anishinaabe Aki on the ancestral land of the Anishinaabe people. FIRST AMERICANS is an exhibit featuring work by Native American Artists residing in Michigan/Anishinaabe Aki.

Ramsdell Theatre Master Plan Update

The City of Manistee has issued a Requests for Qualifications and Cost Proposal for an updated Ramsdell Theatre Master Plan. The deadline for response is Friday November 12, 2021.

SHPO Press Release

The study is being funded by a State Historic Preservation Office grant.

A copy of the documents can be obtained from the City Clerk’s office, 70 Maple Street, Manistee, MI 49660 or at the links found here.

Please read all of the documents carefully to make sure you are a qualified consultant and that you submit a full and complete proposal.

James F. Galer Memorial Scholarship Fund

Manistee, MI, September 7, 2021 – The Ramsdell Regional Center for the Arts (RRCA) establishes a new scholarship fund to support promising and deserving students who wish to participate in eligible RRCA arts education programs. The memorial scholarship fund honors the late James F. Galer, a lifetime educator and resident of both Grandville, MI, and later in retirement, Manistee. James taught mathematics at Zeeland High School in Zeeland, MI, for 38 years, later becoming department chair. The late James F. Galer and his wife Marilyn Galer loved west Michigan and were a part of the Manistee community. They were both involved as volunteers and especially loved music and the arts. Jim was involved with the Ramsdell Theatre as a docent, board member, and house manager.

“We are honored and grateful to Marilyn Galer for the opportunity to support children in Manistee,” said Xavier Verna, executive director of the RRCA. Funds raised will be placed in a fund where we can draw interest and offer scholarships in perpetuity. Individuals and businesses can invest cash, securities, or other assets into this fund. “As the fund grows, the more interest we can draw from it, the bigger the impact you can make,” added Verna. A separate announcement will detail the eligibility requirements for students to receive scholarship support.

The memorial scholarship is also a celebration of life. James F. Galer passed away two years ago on September 7, 2019. Scholarship funds and tribute gifts are a great way to honor the loss of a loved one. The RRCA is a 501c3 non-profit organization, and gifts to the scholarship fund and other tribute gifts are 100% tax-deductible.

The RRCA is now accepting donations for the James F. Galer Scholarship Fund. Please write checks to the Ramsdell Regional Center for the Arts, or RRCA, and mail them to 101 Maple St, Manistee, MI 49660.

Fill out the form below if you’re interested in making a gift of stock or mutual funds.


Theatre Camp Registration Now Open!

Manistee, MI, April 30, 2021 – The Ramsdell Regional Center for the Arts (RRCA) is launching the inaugural Ramsdell Theatre Camp June 14 – 26, 2021. The camp is limited to 35 students. Registration is now open and the deadline is May 28 at 11:59pm. Students will meet Monday-Friday from 9am – 12:30pm at the Ramsdell Theatre for two weeks. A showcase at the end of the camp will feature students’ work during the camp. The showcase will be free for friends and family and registration is required. Attendance will be limited due to COVID-19.

“With COVID, we had to cancel the camp in 2020, even after things were in motion and students had already registered. It was sad, but necessary to hold off until this year,” said Xavier Verna, executive director of the RRCA. “We’re thrilled to welcome students to the theatre this year. The camp directors are a class-act and will no doubt develop a memorable and educational experience for all.”

“Students ages 12-17 are encouraged to join us as we dive into pre-professional training for the theatre,” said Program Director Erin Thompson. “Aspiring performers and theatremakers will learn how to utilize the techniques of acting, singing, and dancing, and apply their skills to the context of a fully produced showcase.”

The teaching artists include Erin Thompson and Abbey Siegworth. Erin Thompson (Program Director) is an award-winning Director, Choreographer, Equity Performer, and Educator. She is New York City based, and organically grown in the Midwest (Iowa). Erin received a B.F.A. in Musical Theater from The Boston Conservatory of Music. She spent the next 15 years performing professionally in commercial musical theater at nationally renowned regional theaters all over the country. Amidst her experience in over 40 Equity shows, she served as Dance Captain and Assistant/Associate (Director/Choreographer) on several of the shows, which would groom her for her latter career as a Director/Choreographer.

Abbey Siegworth (Associate Director) is so excited to join the team at Ramsdell Summer Theatre Camp. Originally from the Chicago area, she is currently based in Los Angeles.  Abbey has worked with Titan Theatre Company and Three Day Hangover (NYC); Clarence Brown Theatre; Nebraska Repertory Theatre; American Players Theatre; Dallas Theater Center as a member of the Brierley Resident Acting Company; Montana Shakespeare in the Parks; and several theaters in Milwaukee and Chicago.

Favorite recent roles include: the title role in Electra, Abigail (Abigail/1702), and Jennifer (The Doctor’s Dilemma). Abbey spent summer 2019 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival with the play Boswell; and stars in the independent film Stolen Season, currently available on Amazon and iTunes. She is a proud member of the Actors Equity Association. BFA University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana; MFA Southern Methodist University.

For more information about the camp, the COVID-19 guidelines, and to register, please visit

2021 (Hopeful) LIVE Schedule!

The most recent change is Irish Night/Crossbow (rescheduled from March 20 to October 23, 2021) and Rush Tribute (rescheduled from May 21 to November 12, 2021).


Tickets are available for Crossbow, Rush Tribute, Tom Petty Tribute, and Mercury Tribute. New ticket sales will be announced after the spring.



as of 4/2/2021

June 14 – 26, 2021 – Ramsdell Theatre Camp

July 9, 2021 – The Insiders: A Tom Petty Tribute

July 23, 2021 – Resurrection: Journey Tribute

August 20, 2021 – Mercury: Tribute to Freddie Mercury featuring Terry Barber

August 27, 2021 – S’Wonderful– An Evening of Gershwin featuring Karen Curlee

September 26, 2021 – Hal Grossman: American Violin

September 30 – October 1, 2021 – 2x Nights Cirque Esprit (WSCC Collaboration)

October 23, 2021 – Crossbow rescheduled Irish Night from March 20

November 12, 2021 – Rush Tribute rescheduled from May 21

December – The Nutcracker opening Sleighbell Weekend (2-weekend show run)

January Series available on YouTube

Community Wide Face Mask Project