Playcrafters Barn Theatre will stage “The Christmas Letter Writing Club,” an original work by local playwright Tom Akers, directed by Madison Duling, this month.

The show will run on Aug. 19-21 and 26-28 at the Barn Theatre, 4950 35th Ave., Moline.

Four women – Jenn, Katie, Lisa, and Allison – reconnect some years after they first formed a bond as students at the University of Wisconsin, according to a Playcrafters release. At the end of the first reunion, they decide to reconvene at one family’s lakeside cabin every autumn to renew their ties while each of them writes the yearly summary of their lives for their Christmas letters to friends and family.

As 20 years of their lives unfold before the audience, the foursome draw strength from one another while sharing the accomplishments, failures, joys, and sorrows that make up their lives.


The cast features Jaclyn Marta, Noah Stivers, Zach Zelnio, Moline; Sara Laufer and Elle Winchester, Rock Island; and Mara Earp, Stockton.

Akers is the author of the published plays “Dear God,” “How to Make a Teenage American Quilt,” “My Daily Life,” and “Fallen.” “The Christmas Letter Writing Club” is his first play written for an adult audience.

He has appeared onstage at both Playcrafters and at Richmond Hill and works with high school speech and theatre. Akers has published three books including “The Invisible Hand,” “Evel Knievel and Josh Russell,” and “Everett the Incredible,” available on

His fourth book, “Things We Don’t Talk About,” will be coming out in September. Tom lives in Cambridge with his wife Kelly and son Evan, along with their cat Crystal.

The new play features (L-R) Mara Earp, Sara Laufer, Jaclyn Marta, and Elle Winchester.

Madison Duling, Davenport, directs The Christmas Letter Writing Club. The staff includes Max Johnson, Coal Valley; Bruce Duling and Riley Scranton, Rock Island; Tom Akers, Cambridge; Eric Teeter, Davenport; Nathan Lundburg, Orion; Kathy Edwards, Stockton.

Performances will begin at 7:30 p.m on Fridays and Saturdays and a 3 p.m. matinee on Sundays. Tickets are $12 ($10 for military and seniors), available on the theater website or by calling 309-762-0330.