Yukon ballet benefit at bar a blast

‘Low-key’ Sunday afternoon event for Nutcracker production

Central Oklahoma Ballet Co. supporters show off featured auction and raffle items during Sunday afternoon’s Yukon Nutcracker benefit at Grady’s 66 Pub: From left, performer Laura Castrop, COB Board President Allie Overton, COB artistic director Debra Vossen, and Adam Vossen. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

More than 100 people converged on Grady Cross’ Main Street bar last Sunday afternoon to support the Yukon ballet.

Funds from admissions, onion burger sales, a dessert auction, and gift basket raffles all went to support Central Oklahoma Ballet Co.’s holiday production of the Yukon “Nutcracker”.

Grady’s 66 Pub, 444 Main, proved to again be an ideal setting for this Nutcracker benefit.

“It was very successful,” said Yukon’s Debra Vossen, artistic director for Central Oklahoma Ballet. “It was just a relaxing and low-key Sunday afternoon. Everyone really seemed to enjoy themselves.”

The event featured more than 20 delectable desserts and four valuable raffle items, such as a seasonal beer basket and Christmas Nutcracker decor.

Local ballet supporters downed some cold drinks and fresh-grilled onion burgers prepared by pub manager Nathan Cross and his crew.

A highlight was a live performance by the Gleason-Landreth band, a trio that performed many classics and popular songs.

The estimated $1,500-plus in proceeds will help offset costs of presenting two performances of the Nutcracker holiday classic, set Dec. 4-5 inside the Yukon Fine Arts Center at 850 Yukon Ave. Curtain will rise at 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday.

This year, Central Oklahoma Ballet is buying new dance costumes and sets for the yuletide production. Yukon’s Nutcracker returns after being canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Members of the Gleason-Landreth band perform a rock ‘n roll classic for an appreciative audience inside Grady’s 66 Pub, 444 W Main. Attendees savored fresh grilled onion burgers and cold drinks as they listened to the music. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)


Another fundraising benefit for Central Oklahoma Ballet’s Nutcracker production is coming up later this month.

A “Nutty Nutcracker/Duck Lake” play will be staged Friday night, Oct. 29 at the Dale Robertson Center, 1200 Lakeshore.

Yukon storyteller Ginger LaCroix will write and narrate a comical take-off on the traditional Nutcracker story and “Swan Lake” ballet.

This Nutty Nutcracker “play” will be performed by the adult cast members from the real Yukon Nutcracker’s opening “party” scene.

“It will be hilarious,” Vossen promised.

Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. There will be a silent auction, heavy hors-d’oeuvres and liquid refreshments besides a very funny show.

For more information, visit Central Oklahoma Ballet Company’s Facebook page or call (405) 354-1743.

Yukon’s Nutcracker will be performed this December by professional guest artists alongside locally trained dancers, accompanied by the Oklahoma Community Orchestra directed by Irv Wagner.

Central Oklahoma Ballet Co. members Phil Carson (left) and David Hodgkinson enjoy the Sunday afternoon festivities inside Grady’s 66 Pub. Both Carson and Hodgkinson are among featured performers in the opening “party” scene of Yukon’s yuletide Nutcracker production. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)