Barb Chisholm Discusses Roadside Chapels Before Pen Players Production

Our Lady of Seneca Street shrine along Seneca Street in Buffalo, New York was the inspiration for Tom Dudzick’s comedy “Miracle on South Division Street.”

Peninsula Players Theatre, in conjunction with its production of Tom Dudzick’s comedy Miracle on South Division Street, will host speaker Barb Chisholm who will present a presentation to ticket holders on the roadside chapels of southern Door County on Oct. 15 at 6 pm.

Curiosity in a neighborhood landmark from his boyhood inspired playwright Dudzick to write Miracle on South Division Street, a touching comedy about a family who has taken care of their grandfather’s shrine to the Blessed Mother for decades. A deathbed confession changes everything they know.

In the 1950s Joe Battaglia, an Italian immigrant, lived above his barbershop along Seneca Street in Buffalo, New York. After having a vision of the Blessed Mother, who told him he had a mission to spread peace, he built a brick shrine and had a marble statue of Mary made. In the 1980s the city of Buffalo intended to demolish the shrine, but advocates saved it.

Many European immigrants made similar shrines, grottos or roadside chapels while settling and farming the Door County landscape. Chisholm’s presentation will focus on these roadside chapels scattered across Door County. To register for the pre-show presentation, call 920.868.3287.

Peninsula Players performs Tuesdays through Sundays at 7 pm, with a 4 pm matinee Oct. 20. Individual ticket prices range from $34 to $40. For more information or to reserve tickets, call 920.868.3287 or visit