Actor reunited with Christmas bells

Whidbey Playhouse actor Ron Wilhelm has been reunited with his missing Christmas bells. Photo by Ron Newberry/Whidbey News-Times

It took some determination and a little extra digging for the case of the missing Christmas bells to be solved at the Whidbey Playhouse this month.

Actor Ron Wilhelm of Oak Harbor had loaned two long strings of horse sleigh bells with sentimental attachments to the playhouse for a holiday revue last month, then was disheartened when they came up missing following the final production Dec. 18.

An extensive search by Wilhelm and others at the playhouse and at an off-site storage site produced no bells, leading to a story in the Whidbey News-Times Jan. 11 that described Wilhelm’s plight.

The mystery was solved the next day when board member Pat Campbell decided to take a deeper look inside the playhouse’s storage facility and noticed a box that was “shoved way in the back” and stored away from the rest of the props and garments that were used in “Christmas at the Playhouse.”

She set the box on to the floor and could hear the bells jingling before she opened it.

The sleigh bells were at the bottom of the box underneath a bunch of Christmas garlands.

“I was so happy to find those bells,” Campbell said. “I couldn’t wait to let Ron know.”