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Tuesday, May 23, 2000

Welsh Designated Visiting Humanities Scholar for ZaSu 2000 Film Festival

SALISBURY, MD---Salisbury State English Professor Jim Welsh was recently designated visiting "humanities scholar" by the Parsons (KS) Humanities Council and the Kansas (State) Humanities Council for the ZaSu 2000 Film Festival held at Labette Community College in Parsons, KS. This was the third annual film festival held in honor of ZaSu Pitts who was born in Parsons.

The celebrity guest this year was singer and actress Gale Story, who has worked with Pitts on The Gale Storm Show in television. The festival took place as scheduled, even though the week before the town of Parsons was devastated by a tornado that damaged or destroyed over 700 homes and wiped out half of the downtown business district.

Welsh presented the keynote address, "The Darker Side of the Fifties," and participated in two panel discussions along with Dr. John C. Tibbetts of the University of Kansas. Tibbetts and Welsh have co-authored and co-edited six books dealing with theatre and film topics.

The film festival was directed by Brent Bates of Labette Community College, who chaired the planning committee. The event was well organized and well attended, despite the considerable damage done by a tornado that had cut through the town.

"That was a tribute," Welsh said, "to the community spirit of some brave and determined Kansans, who seemed to live by the title of Gale Storm's 1981 biography, I Ain't Down Yet!"


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