Liberty Spotlight..41st season kicks off tonight

Published 6:00 am Thursday, July 11, 2019



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Tonight is a special night as the 41st season of Tennessee’s official state outdoor drama gets underway at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park with a 7:30 p.m. show and continues Friday and Saturday of this week as well as Thursday through Saturday of the next two weeks of July.

It will be First Responders Night for the opening show as first responders and one guest will get free admission to tonight’s show.

Each week of the drama, the STAR will be doing a feature on one of the characters from the drama and give a little taste of the role they played in the history of the area.

This week’s feature is on Robert Young who is portrayed in the drama by Steve Hyder.

Who was Robert Young?

“Robert Young is actually interwoven throughout the play. He was onsite of several of the events that took place in early Tennessee history all the way up to the founding of the State of Franklin,” said Hyder.

“His farm in Johnson City actually is now where the Mountain Home Medical Center and National Cemetery is. His family donated the land to the United States after his passing.

“He is credited with the shot that actually killed Major Patrick Ferguson at the Battle of Kings Mountain. His rifle currently hangs in the governor’s mansion in Nashville.”

Why did you want to be a part of Liberty?

“My kids honestly,” said Hyder. “They have all done local theater while my wife and I had not.

“They wanted to give this a shot so we came down here to back them up and found ourselves really getting along well with the cast and the crew and fell in love with the story of it and fell in love with the people too.

“It’s become a family thing for us.”

Why do you feel people need to see ‘Liberty’?

‘It’s very important because East Tennessee often is not recognized for the things it is actually responsible for,” stated Hyder.

“For us to not fully understand who our ancestors and our heritage are, is a disservice to those who came before us.

“The State of Franklin, the North Carolina battle, the Indian battles — its living history and we are here. The people who lived here and built this country are buried in our graveyards. It all started here. It was the beginning of the frontier.”