SOMERVELL COUNTY -- A longstanding tradition just outside of Glen Rose may be coming to an end.

For the past 25 years, a popular Christian theater production named 'The Promise' has been performed every Friday and Saturday during the months of September and October.

But because of a depleting tax base, county officials are now considering closing the county amphitheater -- the home of the play.

'It's shocking,' said actor Adam Richards, who plays the role of Jesus Christ in the play. 'A version of 'The Promise' has been seen by 50 million people worldwide. I don't know how you just say we're not doing it anymore.'

Equally dismayed are longtime fans like like Carolyn Hill, who recently brought her granddaughter to a Friday night show after hearing it could all be over after this season.

'It's very sad,' she told News 8.

The county said it has no problem with the play itself, but rather with how much money it costs to run the amphitheater.

Annually, that figure is close to $200,000.

'The Promise,' the only regular user of the facility, pays about $30,000 for its limited performances, which leaves a financial shortfall of about $170,000 for taxpayers.

'We've tried other shows [in the theater,]' said county commissioner John Curtis. 'We are open to options, but it just isn't working.'

Show producers and the board of directors are trying to find a solution.

Ideas being floated include a long-term lease of the facility. A private entertainment company could also buy the amphitheater.

But all of those discussions are just talk right now.

'We've had some opportunities to think,' Phil Hobson said. 'But we want to do it here.'

A final decision could come before the end of the year.

Find details on what could be the final performances at this website.


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