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Sugar Hill Mayor Steve Edwards presents the 2017 Volunteer of the Year Award to Ane Mulligan. Photo courtesy City of Sugar Hill

By Ginger Ashworth

Taking a look at the calendar for Ane Mulligan on any given day and one will get tired just reading it! It is no surprise that she was recently chosen as Volunteer of the Year for the City of Sugar Hill. Ane fits in perfectly for the ever busy town as she is cut from the same cloth.

When asked about receiving the honor she says, “No idea. None. I think some girls in the office knew because when I walked into a room of whispers, all got quiet.”

How did all this get started? Ane says about seven years ago the Mayor of Sugar Hill, Steve Edwards, asked her to begin a community theatre. I watched as she demonstrates how she vehemently shakes her head saying no to Mayor Edwards. She had been the Creative Arts Director for her church for about eleven years, creating sermon starters and even full length dramas. 

Ane had also become so busy writing her books and becoming the queen of the Southern Fried Fiction world. Her books include “Way Down, A Suwanee Murder,” and “When the Bough Breaks” and coming in 2018 she releases her latest, “When the Wind Blows.” However, no amount of coffee or chocolate, which she firmly believes are food groups, could keep her solid “no” in place for long. She finally caved in 2013.

She loves community theatre and is the Creative Director of the Players Guild at Sugar Hill, an avocational non-profit theatre group. She and her husband, Terry Mulligan act, direct, build sets, all while trying to keep all of us (yes, I have the honor of getting to work with this tireless, wonderful woman) on track. 

Ane and the cast, which included her husband, just wrapped up the radio plays “Mars is Heaven” and “War of the Worlds.”

Her first play in 2014, Agatha Christie’s, “And Then There Were None,” which was scheduled to premier in the Sugar Bowl, met with a deluge, flooding the outdoor arena. With days of downpours predicted, the crew was faced with tough decisions. With all the time, effort and money invested, and many looking forward to the debut of the first production from the Players Guild, what could they do to keep from canceling? In true theatre fashion, the show must go on! And go it did! In one night, the underground parking garage transformed into the scene of an old mansion, where mysteriously, the cast is murdered one by one, with suspicions running rampant among the survivors.

The Players Guild officially opened in 2015, sharing the Buice building with two other groups. The Players Guild eventually became the only tenants of the building housing the costumes as well as performing the plays. The last play at Buice, “The Savannah Sipping Society,” wrapped up in September and received rave reviews.

Ane is looking forward to the upcoming radio play to be performed in the new Eagle Theatre — “Bullets and Badges: The Best of Old Time Crime.” The radio play will be presented March 30, 2018 thru April 8, 2018. If you would like to get a chance to perform live, auditions are being held January 8th and 9th from 7-9 p.m. at the Buice Auditorium.

Ane has been involved in theatre since she graduated with churches and dinner theatres. Even with her newest book being written, she still goes full force with the community theatre. We look forward to many more laughs and tears, getting to know the characters, and getting caught up in the storyline. Seeing so much more from the loving, giving, caring, unstoppable Sugar Hill Volunteer of the Year, Ane Mulligan.

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