DORSET - In celebration of 85-years of The Dorset Playhouse location on Cheney Road in Dorset, the Dorset Players, owners of this landmark, will hold a black-tie-optional gala event, "Starry Starry Night", on Saturday, April 20, from 6 to 9 p.m., at a reserved ticket price of $40 per person.

The second main purpose of the evening will be a formal launch of the Players' capital fund fund-raiser, "Pathway to the Stars."

Income from this capital effort will create a reserve fund for any future major expenses to the building itself (roof replacement; repairs/replacement to the AC or heating systems; et al).

Since January, Board members and friends of DPI have been planning this event, open to members, friends and theater-lovers throughout the region.

"Starry Starry Night" will feature a different approach to the Players' annual Cabaret event. Performers from the Players company will sing numbers from shows done in this venue since the 1930s to the present day, as a special dedication to showcase the Players' long history. This Cabaret offering will occur in two segments.

Catered hors d'ouevres with wines and champagne, donated by local establishments and businesses, will be on offer throughout the early part of the gathering. A Silent Auction will also be offered, with items from local sources. (Anyone interested in contributing an item to the auction can call the Sheila Conway at the Players office. 867-5570, or CeCe King at 375-9756, who are co-chairing this event).

Winners of auction items will be announced during coffee and dessert at the close of the night.

The actual "Pathway to the Stars" is a stone walkway from the road edge to the Box Office door on the site's north side. These stones--in three sizes--will be laser-engraved with tributes, memorials or comments from those purchasing these pathway markers.

A preliminary design was created by Steve Burzon and his crew at Garden Arts in Manchester. All income from the Pathways project will go into the newly-dedicated capital reserve fund. Brochures are available at the Playhouse, and at retail outlets throughout the area, including Garden Arts. Those who would like to be included in the first section of the path's execution should have an application in no later than May 31.

Questions on the project should be made to Sheila Conway, business office manager, at 867-5570.