CELORON – The Celoron village board voted unanimously Monday to move the statue of Lucille Ball from Lucille Ball Memorial Park to the upcoming National Comedy Center in nearby Jamestown.
Monday’s vote follows a month-and-a-half of controversy and public outcry surrounding the statue, with many asking that it be removed and a more fitting statue take its place. Critics of the statue, which was created by Jamestown Sculptor Dave Poulin, claimed the statue looked nothing like the comedy legend and as a result, requested that it be removed.
After much discussion – including a special work session in April devoted to discussing the statue – village officials made the decision to relocate the statue to the National Comedy Center, which is scheduled to be opened in August 2016.
Upon learning of the vote, National Comedy Center chairman Tom Benson made the following statement:
“We are extremely pleased with the decision made by the Celoron Board today. We are excited to embrace the statue in a different light; not as likeness of Lucille Ball, but as a tribute to what she was all about – making people laugh. This piece of comedy history has made millions of people laugh since going viral, and we look forward to working with the board of Celoron to find creative ways to showcase it in Comedy Center Park and the upcoming National Comedy Center, set to break ground during this year’s Lucille Ball Comedy Festival, and open in August 2016.”