Emily Lampa is in Jamestown for the 70th Anniversary of “I Love Lucy.” She is talking with Journey Gunderson, executive director of the National Comedy Center. One of their most popular exhibits is the comedy continuum. It is an exploration of all the connections and collaborations in comedy. Lucille Ball is in the comedy continuum and you can explore her influences and collaborations with so many artists from Harpo Marx and Jack Benny to Carol Burnett.
Journey says also here in Jamestown they operate the Lucy Desi museum and produce the Lucy Comedy Festival annually but here at the National Comedy Center which celebrates all comedy. She says we do have a couple of experiences that are close to Lucy fans hearts. One of them is that you can get into the scenes of I Love Lucy. She says if you ever wanted to try your hand at wrapping the chocolates on the conveyor belt like Lucy and Ethel, a scene once voted in 2013 the funniest scene in television history you can do that. You can also see the iconic polka dot dress where she takes her place next to Charlie Chaplin’s cane, George Carlin’s 25,000 piece joke archive, costumes worn by Carol Burnett and more.
While you are at the National Comedy Center you can visit something that won’t be there that much longer. For a limited time, you can come and visit the Fozzie Bear. Journey says this is neat because you see intergenerational reactions to this display case because three generations of families have enjoyed Fozzie Bear and of course he was the Muppet Show’s resident struggling stand-up comedian, so it is only appropriate that he is here. Journey says it is an original puppet from The Muppet Show used from 1975 – 1981. You can see Fozzie Bear at the National Comedy Center until the end of October.
Another awesome thing about the National Comedy Center is that you can rent out space for your event, birthday, anniversary or whatever you are celebrating. Journey Gunderson says this museum facility is enormous. When you host your event at the National Comedy Center you get access to all the interactive exhibits, immersive experiences, up-close to rare artifacts to comedy history and the laughs are included.
There is 37,000 square feet of exhibit space but there is also a participatory wing with a comedy karaoke lounge where you can perform stand-up from some of the greats of all time. Journey says it is well suited for groups, birthday parties, bridal showers, bachelor parties and more. They also have a wonderful riverfront on the outside of the building and they outfitted it with a patio, and they opened a bar which features Desi Arnaz’s original 1959 pool table. Journey says they are always available and ready to chat. She says we’ve seen it all, we hosted it all and whether we are opened or closed, whether it is after hours or during hours we can host anyone here at the National Comedy Center.
For more information visit comedycenter.org