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Gary R. Gaydos, who retired in 2016 after 38 years as manager of the Florissant Civic Center Theater at the James J. Eagan Community Center, has been named one of six honorees for the 2017 Missouri Arts Awards.  The awards will be presented on Wednesday, February 8 in the Capitol Rotunda in Jefferson City.

 Gaydos will be presented with the Leadership in the Arts award.  The Missouri Arts Council, which has honored the State’s “arts heroes” and the people who make art happen since 1983, will give awards in six categories at the February 8 event.  For more information, visit

The Council will recognize Gaydos for his “four decades as a leader in both his profession and his volunteer activities,” saying that “Gary R. Gaydos has enriched the lives of countless people in his home town of Florissant, North St. Louis County, the St. Louis region and beyond.”

 During his career, Mr. Gaydos was the driving force in arts programming for the Florissant Civic Center Theatre as well as its long-range planning and day-to-day operations.  In 2016, more than 120,000 people attended performances at the Florissant Civic Center Theatre by Alpha Players and Hawthorne Players community theater organizations as well as other theater companies, concert bands, dance studios and schools as well as national touring groups.

 Nationally known performers often brought their acts to Florissant, such as actor Edward Asner of Mary Tyler Moore Show fame, who staged his one-man show about former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt at the Florissant Civic Center Theatre a few years ago.

 “We are proud of the many accomplishments made by Gary in his tireless service to Florissant and the arts community, not only in our city but also for the entire St. Louis area and the State of Missouri,” said Florissant Mayor Thomas P. Schneider.  “In his honor our theater was recently re-named the Gary R. Gaydos Civic Center Theatre in Florissant.  We are deeply appreciative of his decades of service to the residents and families in our community and beyond.”

 Mr. Gaydos also was a board advisor for more than 30 years to the Florissant Fine Arts Council, and for 28 years directed the Junior League’s St. Louis Family Series for area schools.  He was the leader of the Children’s Celebration of Performing Arts at the City of Florissant’s annual Valley of Flowers Festival, which annually is the St. Louis area’s first major festival.

  He served four terms on the board of the Missouri Association of Community Arts Agencies, including three years as its president.  Mr. Gaydos also has been a long-time volunteer for the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, the Touhill Performing Arts Center of the campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Webster University and the Missouri Arts Council.

 “Gary is a visionary,” said Larry Marsh, president of the Hawthorne Players and director of the Northwinds Concert Band as well as a retired, long-time teacher at McCluer North High School in Florissant.  “He has sought to bring the very best to his beloved city, seeing the need to embrace and encourage both diversity and excellence.”

Florissant Civic Center Theatre (FCCT) is home to many productions for both residents and visitors to enjoy. FCCT is also home to several theatre based companies like The Hawthorne Players and The Alpha Players of Florissant. Check out our upcoming events to learn more about the FCCT!

The FCC Theatre and Art Gallery are available for use by patrons who wish to produce shows, art exhibits, hold meetings and/or conventions. This colorful 567 seat professionally equipped theatre features a fully draped traditional proscenium stage. Over 120,000 patrons annually attend performances of all types here, making this theatre a well-established cultural hub of the community. The theatre is complimented by the acoustical engineering of the facility, professional lighting system and backstage trappings that make it easy to understand how magic is created here. The FCC Theatre is located in the James J. Eagan Center at #1 James J. Eagan Dr. (Parker Rd. at Waterford Dr.)

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