Don Bridge, a beloved member of the local creative arts community, died suddenly on Sunday.
Don, and his wife Lisa, had a thriving, award winning children’s and community theater company in Durham before they came to the Outer Banks.
In producing these plays for kids, Don wrote many scripts but left them in the public domain, and people that he worked with have passed those shows around and used those scripts in many places around the country.
He taught a lot of people how to make theater for kids that would keep the whole family entertained.
After being introduced to The Lost Colony and the Outer Banks by a friend in the company, and spending a couple of summers in the show, they decided that this would be a good place to come and raise their kids.
He continued making shows for a while with his own company, and with The Lost Colony’s children’s theater program after moving to the Outer Banks, continuing to teach actors how to make the shows funny, but also smart.
For several years, Don and Lisa owned the Toy Boat Toy Store, first in Manteo, and then on the beach in Buccaneer’s Walk Shopping center, Kitty Hawk.
They also opened a shop in that center called Puzzles Pranks and Games. Again, the focus was on toys that were fun and smart.
Don was also a DJ on 99.1 The Sound for several years when the station was located on the waterfront in Manteo.
But, Don was never happier than he was when he got to work on a stage.
And he had a way of getting people to understand how much fun they could have just pretending; just trying to get the audience to come along for the ride.
The Theatre of Dare also shared this about Don:
For those of you who haven’t yet heard, Theatre of Dare lost one of our most dearly loved members, Don Bridge. If you’ve never worked on a TOD production, certainly you’ve seen him on the stage, either as an actor or making the announcements at the top of the show and running the 50/50 scholarship raffle.
Actor, director, mentor, advisor, friend, and the most charming of critics, Don Bridge was a dynamic personality. He has been with us for most of our history, seeing us through the decades as one of our strongest supporters and talents. When he was with us on the stage, he was a bright beacon of character inspiring us scene after scene. And if he wasn’t directly involved in a show, he was always there checking on us, encouraging us, and guiding us.
He was our heart.
Theatre of Dare was family to Don Bridge, and he was ours. Our thoughts and love go out to all who have known him and shared the spotlight with him over the years. To the fans that he has touched with his renowned time upon the stage. And, most importantly, to his family and loved ones who graciously and freely shared his love, passion, and warmth with us.