JAMESTOWN – After years of planning and construction, Wednesday, Aug. 1 is the day the National Comedy Center will open its doors to the public for the first time.
The multi-million dollar effort is opening in conjunction with the 2018 Lucille Ball Comedy Festival, which will feature a variety of events and activities beginning today and continuing over the next five days throughout the city.
NCC Executive Director Journey Gunderson recently told WRFA the opening is the culmination of countless hours of work and dedication from numerous stakeholders, starting with her staff at the NCC and the Lucy-Desi Center.
“They are a ‘blood, sweat, and tears’ type of staff. They give everything they have and there is no 9 to 5ers in the bunch. They work hard to get it done,” Gunderson said. “The board of directors has worked liked staff, rolling up their sleeves during the eight years of my tenure. Same thing for Tom Benson, the chairman. This isn’t just professional, it’s personal for him getting this done. Certainly we also want to acknowledge the support of the state, support of the federal government, the county and Andrew Nixon from the County Visitors Bureau, the chamber of commerce, and everyone else. We’ve had wonderful support.”
Highlighting this week’s activities are appearances by Amy Schumer, Lily Tomlin, Dan Aykroyd, Laraine Newman, Lewis Black, Lucie Arnaz, Fran Drescher, Alan Zweibel, W. Kamau Bell, Tom Cotter, and much more.
In addition, the NCC is offering timed-entry admission to the new attraction so that no visit during grand opening week is too crowded. First admissions to the National Comedy Center will begin daily at 9am today, and last admissions will take place at 5pm.
Highlighting Wednesday’s events is the opening of the NCC, along with a Stand-Up Showcase at the Reg Lenna featuring Lewis Black, W. Kamau Bell, Tom Cotter, Judy Gold, Hari Kondabolu, Kerri Louise and more.
In partnership with Chautauqua Institution, the National Comedy Center is also presenting a conversation with Lewis Black at the Hall of Philosophy today at 3:30pm.
Some events have sold out, but tickets do remain for others. To purchase tickets, call 484-2222 or go online to NationalComedyCenter.org.