By Nathan Ham
The holiday classic “It’s a Wonderful Life” will be on the big screen at Appalachian Theatre on Friday, December 20, free of charge. Piedmont Federal Savings Bank, which has served customers in the High Country for 46 years, is taking this opportunity to support the iconic theatre that just reopened in October.
“Piedmont Federal is always searching for ways to give back to our communities and has been a supporter of the Appalachian Theatre renovation from the start. When we had the opportunity in 2015 to tour the facility at the beginning of the renovation process, we knew this was the perfect venue and setting to offer the kind of show that has been so successful for the Wilkes and Forsyth County areas,” said Diana Proffit, the assistant vice-president, and branch manager of the Boone office.
The idea started with Piedmont Federal partnering with Aperture in Winston-Salem in 2012 on a small scale as an outreach to the community and a way to help local charities. That outreach event went so well that for the last seven years, Piedmont Federal has been holding a similar event at the Liberty Theater in North Wilkesboro. Communities in Schools of Northwest Carolina received enough donations from moviegoers at the Liberty Theater to fill about 250 Christmas stockings for children in Wilkes County.
It was only a matter of time before the bank decided to implement their giving back strategy in Boone. In addition to the community members getting to watch a truly classic holiday film, donations will be accepted to benefit the Hunger and Health Coalition of Watauga County.
“Piedmont Federal is delighted to offer the movie showing as a free event. During this season of hope and giving, we are asking for donations to support the Hunger and Health Coalition of Watauga County. Any monetary donations will go to the Backpack Food Program for children at risk. Non-perishable food items will also be accepted for their Food Pantry Program. A representative from Hunger and Health will be onsite for collection,” Proffit said.
This special holiday event will also include an appearance from Santa Clause to bring on the Christmas spirit.
“Santa and Mrs. Claus will be in attendance, just in case someone needs to deliver their Christmas wish list and maybe have a photo made with the jolly couple of the season,” said Proffit. “So we invite all to come out, bring a can of food, visit Santa and enjoy a great movie classic that will put you in the Christmas spirit.”
If you haven’t ever seen “It’s a Wonderful Life” the movie depicts the life of George Bailey, the film’s protagonist, who works for a small building and loan company. “Piedmont Federal originated as a building and loan and continues as a savings bank today. Like Bailey Building and Loan, Piedmont Federal is a local bank, committed to the communities it serves,” said Proffit, when asked why this movie holds special meaning to the folks at Piedmont Federal.
Bailey goes through numerous highs and lows during his life, and at one of his deepest, darkest moments, a guardian angel arrives to show George how things would be if he had never been born.
Admission to the movie is free, however, tickets must be purchased online by visiting apptheatre.org and clicking on “It’s A Wonderful Life” to reserve your tickets.
If anyone would like additional information on the Hunger and Health Coalition, you can visit their website at hungerandhealthcoalition.com and view the informational video or contact Anita Wilson at 828-262-1628.
The staff at Piedmont Federal would like to extend a special bit of gratitude to John Cooper and the numerous other volunteers that helped make the revitalization of the Appalachian Theatre a reality.
Photos below are from the free movie night at Liberty Theater in North Wilkesboro