Production is wrapping up on the PBS documentary about the history of sliced bread in Chillicothe, and the premiere is planned for 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 21, at Grand Six Theater.
Ed Douglas, chairman of the Sliced Bread Committee, was the guest speaker for the Chillicothe Area Chamber of Commerce’s luncheon Wednesday afternoon at Comfort Inn. He talked about the documentary, which is 27 minutes in length, and how it will feature Chillicothe as the first place in the world to introduce commercially-sliced bread to the buying public. The documentary will be shown nationwide after the first of the year to an estimated 7 million viewers, he said.
“If you are someone who has been involved in making Chillicothe a better place, I think you need to be here at this [premiere] event,” Douglas said. “This is, I think, a once-in-a-lifetime event for Chillicothe.”
“How many times do you have a red carpet documentary about your hometown?” he asked. “The answer is only once.”
The local showing will be a fund-raising event for the Sliced Bread Committee to continue its efforts to promote Chillicothe as the Home of Sliced Bread. Tickets are $60, which covers two people to view the premiere and attend the “Slice of Life” “Great Gatsby”-themed cocktail reception following at the Chillicothe Country Club. A $100 Sliced Bread Friend option is also available for purchase which will include recognition and membership. Tickets sales are limited.
Chamber members and their guests on Wednesday also viewed a short promotional clip of “A Slice of Life” during the Chamber’s luncheon. The piece included images of many local people.
Douglas presented the idea of a documentary to KCPT several years ago. However, a local commitment of funds had to be secured before getting a commitment from KCPT.
“So, we raised some money,” Douglas said, noting financial support coming from several entities.
Filming for the documentary, being produced by Kansas City Public Television, began about a year ago. Since that time, the film crew has made dozens of trips to Chillicothe, interviewed numerous people and took video footage at various events, including the holiday parade, the Chautauqua, and the inaugural Sliced Bread Jam.
For those unable to make the Nov. 21 premiere, there will be a free showing of the documentary at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 24, at Grand Six Theater. Seating will be limited and admission will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis.
During the last 10 years, Chillicothe has received much publicity as the Home of Sliced Bread. Coverage included CBS Sunday Morning, Reader’s Digest (as one of the 50 Greatest Things We Love About America), the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, and even the game show, “Jeopardy!”