Passion Play opens 2003 season on April 25

Monday, April 14, 2003
From left, painters Sergey Chernomorets and Chad Rockwell spruced up the set of the Great Passion Play at Eureka Springs Wednesday afternoon. Carroll County residents are invited to attend The Great Passion Play from April 25 through May 3 at no charge as the outdoor production kicks off its 35th season. CCN / E. Alan Long

The nation's largest and most popular outdoor drama opens for the 2003 season on April 25. Nearly 7 million people from virtually every country in the world have come to Carroll County and have seen The Great Passion Play.

For the first week of this season only, residents in Carroll County are invited to attend The Great Passion Play from April 25 through May 3 at no charge.

The Great Passion Play facilities have much to offer, all in one location, according to spokesperson Mardell Bland. Carroll County residents can attend the play, experience the New Holy Land Tour, enjoy the art in the Sacred Arts Center, and see the exhibits in the Bible Museum during this special week at no charge.

"Make sure you also see the wonderful exhibits on our grounds that are always free to the public," Bland said. "The Parables at the Potter's Wheel, the Christ of the Ozarks Statue, and a 10-foot section of the Berlin Wall are among the free offerings on the grounds for the public's enjoyment.

"This year the grounds of The Great Passion Play have a new look," Balnd continued. "You will want to see the improvements that have been implemented since last fall."

The New Holy Land Tour features one of the world's only full-size fully furnished reproductions of Moses' Tabernacle in the Wilderness. The tour is one of the fastest growing daytime attractions in Arkansas and features more than 35 reproductions of Old and New Testament outdoor exhibits.

The Sacred Arts Center is a world-class gallery that features many original oils on canvas, from the early masters to 21st-century artists. The Center also houses several historical collections, such as the royal Dresden china piece representing the Last Supper as commissioned by Kaiser Wilhelm I.

The Bible Museum located in the lower level of the Smith Memorial Chapel is newly renovated and it contains more than 6,000 historical Bibles in 625 languages and dialects, as well as a large collection of parchments and artifacts. The history of the Bible can be traced from the ancient scrolls to modern computer versions.

For information or reservations, persons can call (800) 882-7529 or 253-9200, and present their Carroll County identification at the ticket office.

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