Nearly 20 years after Jamestown began holding festivals to celebrate the legacy of its favorite daughter, Lucille Ball, the city is about to open the first cultural institution in the nation dedicated to comedy.
After more than six years, the National Comedy Center in Jamestown has reached its capital campaign goal. Project Chairman Tom Benson says now the focus can shift to making the attraction come to life.
Benson says it's not a traditional type of museum. He says after a brief questionnaire about humor, visitors will get an electronic ticket for a personalized experience.
"Bringing to your attention and introducing you to things that it knows you like because of your personal sense of humor but it's also bringing you way past that to things that are like what you like but you may never have been exposed to before," Benson said.
The facility will be world-class, designed by firms that have worked on leading cultural attractions around the globe.
"Fully state-of-the-art. There is nothing like this anywhere in the world today. Not only in the world of comedy but in any kind of attraction," Benson said.
A journey through the National Comedy Center, Benson said, will be educational but primarily fun. He says visitors will be able to share their electronic experience on social media. The facility is expected to be complete in 2018.