The popular children’s book character Junie B. Jones returns to the Greensburg scene

The popular children’s book character Junie B. Jones returns to Greensburg in the Greensburg Civic Theater’s Greasepaint Players production of “Junie B. Jones is Not a Crook”, with three performances scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the Greensburg Garden & Civic Center.

While the play is going on, someone at school has stolen June’s furry new mittens, so when she finds a wonderful multicolored pen, she thinks she should be allowed to keep it.

Maybe Warren, the beautiful new boy in kindergarten, will fall in love with her when he sees the pen. It complicates things, and classmates Grace and Lucille also want Warren as their girlfriend.

June struggles to hold the pen. Is she right because of her stolen gloves? Or is it stealing – because Junie B. Jones is not a villain, right?

The play by Allison Gregory is based on two books in Barbara Park’s series for young readers, “Junie B. Jones is not a villain” and “Junie B. Jones loves beautiful Warren.”

The piece combines two books because one book alone is not enough to fill an entire piece, said director Becky Ziegler-Koch.

“Children typically have their first introduction to these stories in kindergarten or first grade,” she said.

But that does not mean that audiences of all ages are not feeling well.

“Every parent who has ever read the books to their children knows that they are just super, super silly and funny,” Ziegler-Koch said. “Parents will laugh because they have seen their children in the same situations.”

For the younger set, there is plenty of fast-paced action.

Cast includes Ziegler-Koch’s daughters, Ryann Shirey as Junie and Callie Shirey as Grace, but they are strictly actors and directors in the theater.

“We keep it professional,” Ziegler-Koch said. “Although I’m sure if you asked them, they would have something to say about me.”

Becca Mitchell from Latrobe plays Lucille, while Wesley Heverly from Greensburg is Handsome Warren. Nathan Coltura from Greensburg is the principal, John Henry Steelman from Indiana Township, Allegheny County, is the grandfather Frank Miller and Michelle Coltura from Greensburg is the wife / mother.

Ryann Shirey, a high school senior, also starred in a previous Greasepaint production of “Junie B. Jones Jingle Bells Batman Smells.”

“She says June is the favorite role she’s ever played,” Ziegler-Koch said.

Performances will be Friday at. 19:00 and Saturday at 13.00 and kl. 4pm at the Civic Center at 951 Old Salem Road. The piece is produced by special agreement with Playscripts Inc. in New York City.

Tickets cost $ 10 in advance (plus fees) or $ 12 at the door, depending on availability. Ziegler-Koch noted that tickets have gone strong and the former “Junie B. Jones” production was sold out.

GCT recommends that masks be worn inside the theater, regardless of vaccination status.

For advance tickets, call 724-836-8000 or visit

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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