Eleanor to Return to Greendale

After more than 70 years, Greendale’s favorite First Lady will make a return visit to the Village as actress Jessica Michna portrays Eleanor Roosevelt in her acclaimed one-woman show on January 15.

Michna will combine her love of history with an uncanny depiction of Eleanor Roosevelt for a performance at the Reiman Visitor’s Center in historic downtown Greendale. Showtime is 6:30 p.m. and the event is free and open to the public.

“The Greendale Historical Society is thrilled to bring this unique show to Greendale,” says Stephan Zielinski. “Michna's performances are funny, compelling and emotionally engrossing.”

Michna’s shows help educate the audience by highlighting the historical significance of Roosevelt’s life. Roosevelt was born into the opulent wealth of America's "Golden Age" she would grow from the shy, homely orphan into a confident, driven woman. Annealed by personal tragedy, she would emerge as a champion of civil rights, author and stateswoman. She is best summed up by President Truman, who dubbed her the “First Lady of the World.”

Greendale has long celebrated its connection with Roosevelt. She first visited Greendale while it was under construction on November 11, 1936. During the tour she is famously reported to have commented that the coal bin had been placed next to the laundry tubs and persauded architects to change the plan.

“I visited the Greendale Resettlement project which has a delightful site and is I think a really good development,” Roosevelt later wrote. “I wish, however, that every group of architects would have a woman sit at their elbow to advise on such minor details as the proper placing of things which she uses daily in her work. These details seem insignificant but they make all the difference in the ease with which work is accomplished and therefore in the happiness of the woman in the family.”