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The stage in the Barnes Performing Arts Center at Oswego High School underwent a slight change on Friday night, as tables, couches, and armchairs crowded the space for the school’s annual Coffeehouse to benefit a local group or charitable cause.
The Coffeehouse, a feature going back many years at OHS, provided a chance for student performers to showcase their skills in a variety of areas: stand-up comedy, drama, singing, playing the piano. The miniature stage on the stage helped to replicate the intimate environment of a real coffeehouse.
However, the event proved to be so popular that all seats on the stage were quickly taken, and the overflow patrons found seats in the house, or stood along the walls of the stage.
While admission to Friday’s event was free, proceeds from the sale of coffee, tea, hot chocolate and baked goods went to help the family of OHS employee Lisa Kowalczyk cover the cost of recent medical expenses. Kowalczyk’s husband was recently diagnosed with cancer and underwent a bone marrow transplant. As in previous years, those who donated to the cause received a short song written about them and performed later in the show.
According to Drama Club sponsor and OHS teacher Katie Conant, the annual event raised about $600 that night, and an undetermined amount of money at a later point.
“It’s not going to make a huge dent, but at least it’s something,” Conant said.
Conant said that organizers are looking at possibly moving Coffeehouse into the cafeteria in coming years, to handle the influx of patrons.