Anita Bryant Today?

Anita Bryant was a 30-something singer in the 1970s who was voted “Most Admired Woman in America” by Good Housekeeping magazine three years in a row. She was also a beautiful girl and was crowned Miss Oklahoma in 1958 and second runner-up Miss America in 1959.
She parlayed her wholesome image into a successful career in the Florida Citrus campaign.

Where is she Today?

asked by Circus in History | 7104 views | 10-25-2009 at 02:03 AM

The St. Petersburg Times caught up with her a few years ago. Bryant remarried and has tried, without success, to revive her career, first in Eureka Springs, Arkansas and Branson, Missouri. That failed in 1997, and she was forced to declare bankruptcy.

Anita and her husband then moved to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, where history repeats itself. She opened the Music Mansion, a Branson-style theater, and put on a show where she sang songs from her 1950’s and 1960’s heyday and preached her Christian beliefs. She was well-liked among her conservative Christian followers, but popularity remained elusive. Attendance was sparse; even on her best days the theater was never more than 25% full. Salaries went unpaid, bills piled up, promises were broken, and the theater eventually closed amid hard feelings and anger.

While theater employees subsisted on popcorn, Anita and her husband continued to live in a $350,000 home in a gated community in the Smokies.

Anita Bryant has left a lot of devastation in her wake. Not only did she stoke the fires of homophobia in the late 1970’s with legislative effects that last to this day, she has also left a trail of unpaid bills, back taxes, broken promises, and abused employees in her wake.

Her theater manager, Brion Bever, tried to cover expenses from his own pocket but he was never reimbursed. He even deferred his own pay so others could be paid. His credit history was ruined when suppliers went after him because he signed for deliveries on her behalf. Those bills went unpaid and Bryant left Bever holding the bag.

answered by Timothy | 10-25-2009 at 02:04 AM

She also got a pie on her face.

answered by Timothy | 10-25-2009 at 02:05 AM

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