One Blue Tarp • A Comedy

One Blue Tarp • A Comedy

by Travis G. Baker

This two-act comedy about a man, his tarp and the town that tries to take it away from him.

David Stillman, a retired Mainer, has just replaced the old, worn out tarp that covers a heap of odds, ends and whatnots out in his yard with a brand new one. It ought to last ten more years but then he finds out from his neighbor that the town of Clara has recently outlawed blue tarps out in folks yards in an effort to spruce things up a bit and attract more tourists. Not one who likes to be told what to do with his own junk, David vows to fight the new ordinance and the rich woman from away, Gail Pritchard, behind it. Undeterred by the pleas of his wife, Joan, David enlists his grandson, Buddy, to help defend the tarp vowing that they can have it when they “pry it out from under my cold, dead, butt. Meantime, his daughter Judy, a Lesbian Boston lawyer, looks to get an injunction against the ordinance while fending off the advances of Gail’s daughter, Hester, and the past fancies of Officer Carl Ray who is just trying to keep the peace and get a date to the contra dance. The forces from Maine and away come to a head at a good old fashioned town meeting where tradition meets development and how the way things are wrestles with how life should be. Sometimes we have to let go of the past and all the stuff that reminds us of it, and sometimes freedom is one blue tarp.

One Blue Tarp: Original Artwork by Magnus Stark | Penobscot Theatre Company 2013 — used by permission

(If producers wish to use this artwork for their production, they must apply to us and we will facilitate its use. THERE MAY BE A NOMINAL CHARGE and in all cases credit must be given as above.)


  • Eight characters (3m 4w,1b, 1dog)
    • David Stillman (65+) — A Mainer.
    • Joan Stillman (60+) — His wife.
    • Judy Stillman (30ish) — Their daughter, a Boston lawyer who needs to do something with her hair.
    • Buddy Stillman (10) — Grandson of David and Joan by their son, Larry, who is serving overseas. He’s up for the summer.
    • Ira Jacobson (60+) — Their neighbor, a selectman.
    • Daisy (Rosco if a boy)Ira’s dog. (can be limited to SFX offstage)
    • Gale Pritchard (50+) A rich widow from away.
    • Hester Pritchard (28) — Her daughter. A mystery writer.
    • Carl Ray (30ish) — The town deputy.
  • 1 exterior, 1 interior
  • contemporary costumes
  • About 2 hours
  • ORDER #3365


Best of Maine in the 2013 Clauder New England Playwrights Competition, One Blue Tarp premiered at the Penobscot Theatre Company in Bangor in the winter of 2014 setting box-office records for a non-musical — and that with two blizzards.


“One Blue Tarp is charming, witty, funny…” — The Bangor Daily News

“Blue Tarps are one of my pet peeves … but, oh, my, the play was rich with stereotypes and laughs!!! A small cast did a great job depicting many elements of Maine life – from the rugged individual (standing proudly in his long underwear) to the distrust of outsiders. It was indeed a rich evening. The play was fun and made for an enjoyable evening.” — Dori M, Audience member





  • Script in PDF format  — Order #3365a : $30.00 (will be sent to you by email, from which you will be authorized to make copies for your production)

  • First Performance Amateur/Educational Royalty — Order #3365d : $90.00 (for the first or only performance)

  • Second Performance Amateur/Educational Royalty — Order #3365e : $80.00 (For each successive performance)

  • Professional Royalties will be quoted upon licensing application

EMAIL us for rights and information. Be sure to give us anticipated performance dates and the address of your group and, if different, your theatre. Please also include a contact name and phone number.


The following is how the credits should read in all programs, posters, fliers, handbills and other promotional advertising for the show:

One Blue Tarp

Travis G. Baker

NOTE: The names of the Playwright(s), Composer, Lyricist, and Bookwriter shall be equal in size, type, coloring, boldness, and prominence. No billing shall appear in type larger or more prominent than the billing to the Authors except for the title of the play. (In a press release all type, will of course, be the same size.)


One Blue Tarp is presented through special arrangement with Premiére Theatrical Licensing on behalf of Leicester Bay Theatricals.  All authorized materials are also supplied by LBT,”


  • PREMIERED: Penobscot Theatre Company, Bangor, Maine — 2014


from the catalog of