The Lucille Ball Festival of Comedy takes place in Jamestown, NY (Lucy’s hometown) on the first weekend in August every year – this year from August 1 to 4, preserving Lucille Ball’s vision of an annual festival of comedy that would support rising comedians in her hometown.
The Lucy Desi Center for Comedy started out with the Lucy Desi Museum and the annual Lucy Comedy Fest and has since grown to include attractions such as the Desilu Studios and The Tropicana Room – a museum and private event venue in tribute to “I Love Lucy,” recently named “Best Television Show of All-Time” and “Best Comedy Show of All-Time” by ABC’s 20/20.
Lucille Ball worked with the Arts Council in Jamestown to develop a comedy festival and comedy film festival in her hometown in the late 1980s. Ball was to visit and attend the first-ever Lucy Comedy Fest, as well as accept an honorary degree at Jamestown Community College commencement in the spring of 1989. Unfortunately, Lucille Ball passed away in April 1989 before attending the festival that would attract thousands of Lucy fans and contemporary comedy lovers a-like.
Since the festival started in 1991, Lucy Comedy Fest has featured performances by Lewis Black, Ray Romano, Ellen DeGeneres, Paula Poundstone, Joan Rivers, Bob Newhart, George Wallace, Billy Gardell, and many more.
Today, the festival attracts over 10,000 visitors annually. Events include performances from some of the hottest rising comedians, live bands, live comedy theater, the world’s premiere “I Love Lucy’ impersonators, Latenight Stand-Up in the Tropicana Room, Lucy Town Tours, Party on the Plaza, a critically-acclaimed kids comedy show and much more.
For more information about the Lucy Desi Center for Comedy and its year-round attractions, visit www.lucy-desi.com/.
For a complete list of events in New York State visit the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in New York