Editor's Note: We are Hope is a new series profiling interesting people in the town of Hope and northeastern Bartholomew County. If you have a suggestion for a person to be profiled in "We are Hope," you can e-mail editor@hsjonline.org

Hope native, Pete Law, says growing up in the small town has not only inspired him, but has fueled his creativity and desire to honor the community through his acting and storytelling. After graduating from Hauser High School in 1993, Law established his career as a teacher and, then, in 2016 he took the plunge into acting. Since that time, Hope has been a valuable fount of support, inspiration and love that is hard to find elsewhere, Law says.

He recently reflected on his memories growing up in Hope and how one’s perspective changes as time continues to roll on.

What is your fondest memory of growing up in Hope?
Going downtown to play in the park, walking to Major’s and getting candy, and walking to the library and having to cross State Road 9 – that was always a big deal. I just remember everything was within walking distance. The old Hope Elementary School was, to me, like the Land of Oz. I didn’t know that that building was falling apart because I loved going to school at the old school. I remember walking down the alley to school every day and some days getting to walk home for lunch. I have so many fond memories of walking up and down these sidewalks.

How has your perspective changed since you have gotten older?
To me, Hope hasn’t changed. There are a lot of things that are no longer here, but it is still the same place and everyone knows everyone else. There are still lots of things happening on the town square. Hope is still, to me, like it was in the 1970s and 1980s and has the same atmosphere.

How does Hope inspire you and your acting?
I always say Hope has introduced me to a variety of a cast of characters over the years that I can pull from when I think of certain roles. Like, someone I once saw on the town square did this “…” and there are all the different family names you can pull from. My play, “The Laws of Jackson Street,” I always said was a love letter to my mom and dad, but in a way it was a love letter to Hope because it was about growing up in Hope in the 1970s and 1980s and I would love to make Hope one of the center points of a sitcom for “The Laws of Jackson Street.”

How will this inspiration translate into your acting?
Unfortunately, I don’t think the Midwest is represented well in the media. Hope has given me a Midwestern perspective and, being older, I think I bring a lot more of my life experiences and those growing up in Hope have fueled my creativity. There have been a lot of comedic moments that have come from living in Hope. I take the good with the bad. There have been some instances I carry with me to laugh at to make the bad seem good.

Are you currently working on any plays that are inspired by your early days in Hope?
My sequel to “The Laws of Jackson Street,” which is called “9021OMG!,” is more about going to Hauser High School in the 1990s.

What fuels your desire to convey Hope’s community feel through both film and television?
Like with “The Laws of Jackson Street,” I wanted to make it so everyone felt like it was their town no matter where they grew up. I wanted to give basic stories that people are like, ‘Oh my gosh that is totally my family.’ I want people to be able to relate and feel that it is their story, too. The whole idea is I like to stir up nostalgia. And that is one of the things I found with my last show is that nostalgia was stirred up in a lot of people both young and old and it was interesting to hear their reactions.

If there was one thing you could tell online readers about Hope, what would it be?
Hope is a unique town in that in the 40 plus years I have lived here it hasn’t changed. It is kind of like, it still has a small town feel. We still say we are going to town if we are going to Columbus. Even though the world is smaller now, I always say there is no place like Hope. There really is no place like it. It has thrived while not changing much and I think that is pretty unique.