At Thrasher-Horne Center, our mission is to:
At Thrasher-Horne Center, we aspire to become the premiere gathering place; the intersection of arts and commerce; the hub of community, education, and culture in Northeast Florida.
We are a 1,750 seat performing arts venue and 6,200 square foot conference center located at St. Johns River State College in Orange Park. Our $22 million, 84,666 sq. ft. Thrasher-Horne Center opened in the Fall of 2004. Former St. Johns River State College President Robert L. McLendon, Jr. named our building after John Thrasher and Jim Horne, both of whom served in the Florida legislature and were instrumental in procuring funding for the Center. Together these men worked with the Clay County Chamber and Tourist Development Council to secure our permanent home on the Orange Park campus of St. Johns River State College. Tony Walsh was the Center’s first Executive Director from 2004 until his retirement in 2013. He was succeeded by current Executive Director, Denton Yockey.
The Center has played host to hundreds of events since its inception, including nationally touring musicians and performers, Broadway musicals, and a variety of other cultural offerings. In addition to the Main Stage Theatre, the Thrasher-Horne Center boasts a 220 flexible-seat Studio Theatre, two Visual Arts Galleries, a full Dance Studio, Scene Shop, and modern dressing rooms with full artist amenities. Our full service conference center offers 6,200 square feet of rental space divided into six flexible multipurpose rooms with an ample main lobby, a full catering warming kitchen, and direct access to our Studio Theatre for additional accommodations.
For more than 60 years, our parent organization – St. Johns River State College – along with the Florida School of the Arts, have been providing educational, technical and cultural opportunities to the residents of Clay, Putnam and St. Johns counties. Clay is one of Florida’s fastest growing counties, and the addition of the Thrasher-Horne Center provided the area with its first major flagship cultural arts facility. Thrasher-Horne Center’s large, modern theatrical and event spaces match in quality those found in performing art centers throughout Florida. We offer both superior entertainment and educational value as well as a direct economic benefit to Clay County.
Our Main Stage lobby houses two separate gallery spaces: The Lee Adams Florida Artists Gallery and the Jack Mitchell Gallery. Our galleries together make up the Mary Ward Huntley Wing, commemorated with a plaque that hangs between the two spaces.
During our inaugural season, area philanthropist Mary Ward Huntley helped create the two visual arts galleries adjacent to our Main Stage lobby. In addition to donating a large number of Lee Adams original works to our permanent collection, she chose to name one space the Lee Adams Florida Artists Gallery in honor of the local painter. This gallery showcases local Florida artists in a variety of artistic mediums.
The Jack Mitchell Gallery is located at the front of the Huntley Wing. Named after famed late New York photographer Jack Mitchell, it is dedicated to showcasing professional photography and has welcomed the best in both local and national artists. A large number of his notable celebrity portraits and photographs now reside in our permanent collection, thanks to a generous contribution by Mr. Mitchell.
Additionally, the Mary Ward Huntley Florida Artists Fund was established by Mrs. Huntley after the passing of her late husband Louis. This fund helps provide additional financial support for our annual visual arts exhibits, and can be supported publicly through our Donations page
Denton Yockey is the Executive Director of the Thrasher-Horne Center at St. Johns River State College in Orange Park. Denton came to Florida from Kansas City where he was the President of Starlight Theatre, an 8000 seat outdoor theatre, for five years. Prior to that he was the President of Casa Mañana Theatre in Fort Worth, Texas for eleven years. Denton started his career in Galveston, Texas where he ran the Galveston Island Outdoor Musicals and Lone Star Performing Arts.
A native Hoosier from Plymouth, Indiana, a small town with a population of only 8,000, Denton and Gina, his wife of 25 years, are now delighted to call Florida home. They have two children, Grayson and Gwyneth.
The Assistant House Manager will assist in the supervision of a volunteer staff to execute front-of-house operations, and lead by example. The Assistant House Manager should be able to display a professional appearance, be cheerful, be adaptable, think clearly on their feet, be confident, cool and calm under pressure and a fast learner. This is a moderately physically demanding job which requires standing and walking on their feet for long periods of time. The candidate should be CPR/AED certified with experience in first aid or be willing to train and be certified. Hours and days vary based on performance and rental schedule. The ideal candidate should have experience and/or training in customer service. A high school degree is a minimum requirement, but direct house manager experience may be substituted. Pay is $11 per hour. A general knowledge and appreciation of the performing and/or visual arts is preferred. Applicant must pass verification of employment/reference screening and background check.
The Thrasher-Horne Center currently in its 14th year, seeks a dynamic leader to serve as its Executive Director. Located in Orange Park, Florida on the campus of St. Johns River State College, the Thrasher-Horne Center includes a 1,750 seat performance hall, a 202 seat studio theater, 6,000 square foot conference center and two art galleries. The Executive Director will be responsible for the strategic planning and artistic programming as well as the overall management of the facility. The ideal candidate must possess the mindset and fervency to continue to develop and nurture the artistic potential and growth of the residents, visitors and students of Northeast Florida. A bachelor’s degree from a four-year college or university in an applicable discipline (Master’s preferred) and at least five (5) years experience in the management of a public assembly facility, or an equivalent combination of education and experience is required. Advanced knowledge in the management of fine arts and entertainment, as well as demonstrated knowledge in all aspects of public assembly facility management operations including fiscal control, policy development, marketing, and event management is required. Applicant must pass verification of employment/reference screening and background check.