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Lucy Festival 2011 - Comments, Photos, etc.

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C L A U D E    2,006

There's nothing funny about someone with a handicap. Nothing. Period. I don't care if she's been doing it for years. Just because someones been murdering people for years doesn't mean it's ok, does it? Moot point, I suppose. I wasn't there and her disgusting humor is exactly why I've never been a fan.

ON THE OTHER HAND though, that's why i never liked All in the family, always making fun of each Nationality, Lucy hated it and so did I.

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jab5983    20

I am big fan of lucy's show but I also loved all in the family! I feel that although the show did make jokes based on sterotypes it was also bringing to light many issues society was facing during that time period. There was a message in that show. If lucy hated all in the family then she would have hated joan rivers peformance thurs night. I thought joan was funny but I doubt this is the type of comedy lucy would want going on during a fesitval honoring her. I am not surprised people walked out. Lucy was known for shows that the whole family could enjoy together. I think it's a shame that a family attending a festival for lucille balls birthday were unable to attend an event together that was held at 8pm.

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jab5983    20

Overall I thought the events this year were decent but I am worried for future festivals. Lucy continues to draw people to Jamestown. The only reason there were so many people there this weekend was because it was her 100th birthday celebration. I think in the years to come the center will begin to move away from lucy related events and put their focus on "new comedy". It seems like they have burned a lot of bridges when it comes to people that knew/worked with Lucy and that these people have no interest in coming to Jamestown for future festivals.

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C L A U D E    2,006

I am big fan of lucy's show but I also loved all in the family! I feel that although the show did make jokes based on sterotypes it was also bringing to light many issues society was facing during that time period. There was a message in that show. If lucy hated all in the family then she would have hated joan rivers peformance thurs night. I thought joan was funny but I doubt this is the type of comedy lucy would want going on during a fesitval honoring her. I am not surprised people walked out. Lucy was known for shows that the whole family could enjoy together. I think it's a shame that a family attending a festival for lucille balls birthday were unable to attend an event together that was held at 8pm.

Well, i can see both sides of that coin, i think it's the Jamestown audience that was the problem, this is not NY or LA where the people are more sophisticated. Lucy joked with Joan on The Tonight show about sex, Lucy was very broadminded and heard similar raunchy material from Totie Fields, i remember her hating Eddie Murphy's RAW show because he said the F word every two seconds, BUT she told raunchy stories herself and loved that type of humor, but maybe you're right about NOT wanting it at a show honoring her at her Festival after she passed on. Of course nothing bothers Lucy now anyway. Lucy hated the glorifying of names like SPIC and WOP and so on on AITF but also hated the fact that Archie never paid penance for his transgressions saying the character never went FULL CIRCLE for her. The only reason i never watch AITF reruns is i find the show NOT FUNNY, except for Edith of course, her character was the only reason i watched the show back then.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Overall I thought the events this year were decent but I am worried for future festivals. Lucy continues to draw people to Jamestown. The only reason there were so many people there this weekend was because it was her 100th birthday celebration. I think in the years to come the center will begin to move away from lucy related events and put their focus on "new comedy". It seems like they have burned a lot of bridges when it comes to people that knew/worked with Lucy and that these people have no interest in coming to Jamestown for future festivals.

Well, i can see their point, first of all there are precious few of these people still alive and secondly it's a hick town, nothing like working in NY or LA would be for these people.

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vivfantoo*    129

Many thanks to all who posted descriptions & pictures of the event! So cool B) to be able to see & hear about some of the goings on since I couldn't be there in person.

 

Would love, love love! to hear that audio recording of the party for Jess at the Roxbury house! (and film if it was filmed)

 

Now, how do we go about getting THAT put on some type of bonus disc so we can all purchase & enjoy it? :lucy1:

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Brock    3,370

 

Now, how do we go about getting THAT put on some type of bonus disc so we can all purchase & enjoy it? :lucy1:

 

Gregg said the music rights are too expensive to have it released on CD or DVD, so I guess he has looked into it at some point.

 

I'll have my update and photos of today's activities up tomorrow, but I can barely keep my eyes open at the moment. LOL

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leenorman    506

Ive had lots of fun so far. I love being in a place all about Lucy and where everyone shares an obsession in Lucy :lucythrill: ...im leaving tomorrow so I will probably be taking more pictures!! but here are my pictures so far!

 

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2300286510425.133343.1347030984&l=454e697ef2&type=1

 

ilovelucy1992: Phenomenal pictures; I live here; but, have come up with a sore foot; and just knew coming down town would require much 'painful' walking.

 

I volunteered, nearly full-time, at the Center from October 2002 until June 2007; am the research person for the chronology; and I must say, I know intimately all the places you took photos of; probably a better viewing than the Post-Journal has issued over the years. Thanks SO MUCH for your entertaining collage on Facebook. It almost seemed I was there.... I appreciate the time you took to do this for US....

 

Regards, Joyce

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leenorman    506

So far, I've been to several events. I arrived late Monday night/early Tuesday morning (~1:30 AM). I spent Tuesday settling and enjoying the Center. There are several new items in the gift shops from shirts to Christmas ornaments to books and DVDs, all of which have been selling quickly. More stuff is coming in each day, so there's always something new to see. They're having early bird specials each morning from 9:00 to 10:00.

 

I've been on the go with events since Wednesday morning. The Lunch with Lucy History included lunch (a buffet lunch of subs, salad, and potato chips - all you can eat instead of the traditional prepared plates) and a showing of the "Toast of the Town" episode with Lucy and Desi. I really enjoyed this since I hadn't seen the entire episode. After the Toast episode was a taped interview of Phillip Morris publicist Jack Fones who was responsible for getting Lucy and Desi on Toast. It was quite enjoyable and even at 93 Jack is very sharp and shares excellent memories of Lucy and Desi. I took the 2:00 LucyTown Tour, which was very enjoyable and included things I forgot from the last time I took the tour (May 2005). (BTW, all of the LucyTown Tours and Cemetery Tours have sold out for the entire festival. Attendees must love the Lucy events. ;)) While the Jammers' game was postposned until 8:00, the game went on Wednesday night and the home team won. (I counted roughly 40 people who signed up for the event.) The Jammers jerseys were supposed to be auctioned off, but they decided to sell them for $150 each. (Only about 5 are left.) The baseball game tickets ($14) included both the game ticket and a buffet (again nice to have as much as you want to eat instead of small portions) dinner.

 

I skipped most of the morning events on Thursday, but I did go to the door unveiling. Attendance was pretty good. I took the Cemetery Tour that afternoon and really enjoyed it. The guide for the trolly that I was on is the Executive Director of the Fenton History Center, which was great because she knew a lot of Jamestown history to add and incorporate into Lucy-related stuff. Stops included Henry Ball's first grave (he's now buried in the same plot as Lucy, DeDe, and Fred), Warner Erickson (the boy accidentally shot in 1927 on Lucy Lane), Lillian Appleby, and Marion Strong VanVlack. There were also impressionists at several spots giving experinences/stories about how they were connected to or knew Lucy. (Well worth going on even if you've been to the cemetery.)

 

The Festivals in Review was interesting, but sadly (at least in my opinion) didn't include everything I think they claimed it would. It was mostly a lot of clips from I Love Lucy intersperced with clips from the 1991, 1992, and 1993 festivals. I'm still glad I went and enjoyed it, but I was expecting (and hoping) to see clips from ALL fesitvals, not just two or three.

 

The Here's Lucy Dinner with Joan Rivers episode was great. (Thanks and kudos again to Brock for the ticket.) Again it was a buffet, so I went away not only enjoying the program but also felt like I got a decent amount of food.

 

The Joan Rivers concert/performance was very interesting. The guy who was her opening was EXCELLENT!!!! I didn't particulalry enjoy her opening of jokes berating various groups of people (e.g. Latinos and handicapped people), but once she got passed that part of the program I rather enjoyed the event. I kinda feel bad for the band that was with her, though. (It was probably an easy gig for them.) They played two songs the entire evening and she only incorporated them into two jokes. I know there were several attendees who were offended and some left early. (I even heard Adrian Israel left early while Joan was making fun of Latinos!)

 

Friday was non-stop. I sprung for the Fab 4 Photo Op since they had impressionists for all four characters, and there were LOTS of others who did too. I do have to agree with Brock about the "Members Only" event...I was surprised (and a bit miffed) that they didn't have anyone checking off names or otherwise verifying membership, and I know there were some who attended who are not members. They always were good at enforcing membership, and I guess this may have gotten overlooked. The artifacts were neat to see, but I saw one of the Emmys at last year's Members Only event, so I was hoping to see something else. I was also hoping for a little more than just holding artifacts, but I appreciate at least having that opportunity.

 

I also signed up for the photo opp with Gregg, and I got a two-for-one special. It was initially set up that for $50 to have one's photo taken with either Gregg Oppenheimer or Joe Mayer (one of the first two twins to play Little Ricky), and $50 per photo to do both (as far as I know). As it turns out, once you got on the set (the photo was taken on the living room set in the Playhouse) you could have your photo taken with Gregg, Joe, or both of them. I, of course, went for both and am glad (while I enjoy supporting the Center) for the "two-for-one" special.

 

The Gregg Oppenheimer event was great, and totally sold out. (Except for the lunch on Wednesday and picnic on Sunday, all of the meals were sold out and were Lucy-centric.) He talked a lot about his Dad and showed the DVD from the farewell party to Jess from 1956. Gregg was really great about answering questions and he ran the entire event, which I think made it more relaxed, more focused on Gregg and his program, and less rushed. The lunch, though, was a salada and a piece of cake. The food was good and I enjoy salads, but for $35 it would have been nice to have a bigger salad.

 

The parade was sensational!!! The bands, cars, etc. were all exciting and I think Brock's recap sums it up great.

 

This morning I spent shopping (what else?). Michael Stern's book (as of earlier this afternoon) is almost sold out...only about 25 copies of the 300 left. The Guiness Book of Records event was well-attended, but was a little chaotic as there were more Lucys than they expected, but we ended up with 914 registered.

 

I'm off to the Oppenheimer Radio Show and Tropicana Dinner, so stay tuned for more (recaps, photos, etc.) from those of us (Brock, me, etc.) who are here.

 

Mary Jane Fan

 

MJF: THANKS SO MUCH for your continuing re-cap; looking forward to the rest of it.....knew I could count on you to 'help me enjoy it, too'; while cursing my sore foot. Hoping all is well with you and yours; and that you are now home safely....Love, JK

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C L A U D E    2,006

Ive had lots of fun so far. I love being in a place all about Lucy and where everyone shares an obsession in Lucy :lucythrill: ...im leaving tomorrow so I will probably be taking more pictures!! but here are my pictures so far!

 

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2300286510425.133343.1347030984&l=454e697ef2&type=1

WOW, what phenominal pictures you took, thanks to you and Brock, we were all there with you, thanks again!

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Brock    3,370

The last day in Jamestown was pretty hectic in making it to the boat cruise at 9:30 but not before packing up the room for the 12 noon checkout time. As it turns out, we got to the Summer Wind in good time, only to have the heavens open up as soon as we got there. Although it was a wet inconvenience, it made the decision to stay below deck all that much easier. As people filed onto the board, those braver than I went to the upper deck and it the boat looked pretty full!

 

The cruise, which also provided a brunch of bagels, Danish, and fruit salad, included reminiscences provided by Little Ricky v2.0 Joe Mayer as well as Michael Stern. The talk began on the upper deck with the remarks being piped through the speaker system to those of us on the lower level and, taking audience questions, Joe talked about how he and his brother got the job almost by a fluke, their memories of working on the set (well, his brother’s memories, as Joe’s are few and far between), how his mother was occasionally written into the show so someone would be on hand to calm the twins down if they were getting fussy, as well as why they did not continue as Little Ricky and their lives afterward. What I found particularly interesting was an anecdote Joe told about when he and his brother signed up for a recent high school reunion and when asked to provide an interesting fact about themselves, mentioned the fact that they played Little Ricky – something they had never discussed with their schoolmates before. Apparently some were pretty chagrined that they didn’t spin those beans out of the cat bag. The discussion continued downstairs where he continued to answer questions, including mine on whether their parents kept any mementos from the set – some of the Ricardo nursery decorations – and another person’s question about his family life – he and his wife have 10 children and TWENTY SEVEN GRANDCHILDREN (!) between them! As Michael played backgammon with the two individuals who bid on the chance to play with him (if memory serves, Michael won the upper deck game and lost the lower deck game to our own MaryJaneFan in a Lounge face-off), Joe went around autographing cards for everyone and talking about his 100th Anniversary Tour of retirement homes and so forth across North America in sort of a Little Ricky Seminar. About an hour into the cruise, the sun started coming out, showing off the beautiful Lake Chautauqua.

 

After the cruise, I went over to check out the garage sale the Rapaports were having at Lucy Lane (got a 1955 ILL colouring book) before going back to the other end of Lucy Lane for a seminar given by the Mayor of Celoron on “Celoron Park Through Lucy’s Eyes” which included a multimedia presentation of vintage photos and memories of the once bustling Celoron amusement park and also memories of Lucy’s childhood in Celoron provided by the lady herself. The presentation was fantastic and the pictures wonderful! It is hard to reconcile what Celoron is today with what it USED to be at the turn of the century and when Lucy grew up. Another highlight of the event was actually finding an excuse to finally get inside the old Celoron School building, particularly the auditorium where Lucy held a reunion for all of her friends and neighbours on her 1956 visit back to Jamestown and Celoron. The building is very well maintained now after several years of neglect and is now run by The Resource Centre, which assists individuals with developmental issues.

 

After that, I decided to skip the fan reunion and use the time to check out a couple of things I hadn’t had a chance to do because of the busy schedules on Thursday through Saturday. The first stop was having a good look at the two gift shops in Town. By the time I got there, most of it was already picked over and the shelves were looking a bit bare – always a good sign! – so I consoled myself with a visit inside the Desilu Playhouse. There were several new items on display there from the last time I went, including the door to Studio A of CBS Columbia Square where My Favorite Husband was recorded, a display dedicated to Jess Oppenheimer, which includes his desk, an Emmy, and various other groovy items, and a new showcase dedicated to costumes worn by Lucy on the show, including her Santa outfit and maid costume from Mertz and Kurtz, along with a couple of regular dresses seen in various episodes. Also included was a Jacques Marcel original!

 

After about half an hour in the Desilu Playhouse, my last stop of the trip before crossing the border was Lakeview Cemetery to pay my respects to the Balls and the Hunts. It has been a while since I have seen so many flowers on Lucy’s grave, and the first time actually where I have seen notes scattered around the plot paying tribute to Lucy (and also Dede).

 

All in all, this was a fantastic festival. As the new management of the Center wants to keep the emphasis on comedy, I think what they had this year struck a very good balance in satisfying both camps for the people that came to celebrate Lucy and also for the people who came for the comedy portion. I hope this balance is somehow maintained. It seemed to work very well.

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C L A U D E    2,006

Thanks guys! I had TONS of fun and love sharing it with you all :peachonthebeach:

Well, we all thank you and Brock again for the great job you did helping us feel we actually went there with you.

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Brock    3,370

The Boat Cruise:

 

Joe Mayer answers questions:

 

jtown2011-095.jpg

 

Battle of the Loungers MaryJaneFan faces off against TheLucyFan:

 

jtown2011-096.jpg

 

jtown2011-097.jpg

 

Joe signs an autograph for Lounge member "Uncle Harry":

 

jtown2011-098.jpg

 

jtown2011-099.jpg

 

The thrill of victory:

 

jtown2011-100.jpg

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Brock    3,370

Celoron Park Through Lucy's Eyes:

 

The Mayor of Celoron Begins His Presentation:

 

jtown2011-101.jpg

 

A selection of slides from the presentation:

 

jtown2011-102.jpg

 

jtown2011-103.jpg

 

jtown2011-104.jpg

 

jtown2011-105.jpg

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C L A U D E    2,006

I wonder who sprang for the flowers on Lucy's monument? I got the same thing for my parents, they sell those silk fower ones everywhere, they last about a year.

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Brock    3,370

 

I'm curious how "Jury Duty" went over with the crowd. Haven't seen it in some time. I've always considered it good, but a notch below BobMadeln's best.

The new fans these days are all ILL. I'm interested to know how they react to later Lucy, this being the last year of Here's. If they can sit through "Ma Parker" they'll sit through anything.

 

 

The people in the audience really seemed to enjoy this particular episode. They weren't busting a gut, to use a colourful expression, but they were laughing very enthusiastically. It is always interesting to see how these episodes do play out with today's audiences in Jamestown. I'm not saying this as a Gale fan, but judging by the laughter and general reactions from the crowd, audiences truly seem to get the biggest kick out of Lucy and Harry's interaction and relationship.

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Brock    3,370

Some videos from the Parade:

 

The Lucy & Desi's helicopter arrival:

 

 

"Lucy and Desi" making their way to the start of the parade route:

 

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Brock    3,370

Arrival of Miss Jamestown 1956, who participated in the original parade and got a smooch from Desi:

 

 

Joe "Little Ricky v2.0" Mayer and Wife:

 

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C L A U D E    2,006

Arrival of Ethel Mae:

 

 

Good God, i get the feeling you'll still be showing us STUFF from the 100th birthday celebration as she starts the festivities for her 101st. :lucyhaha:

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MaryJaneFan    7

Well, i can see both sides of that coin, i think it's the Jamestown audience that was the problem, this is not NY or LA where the people are more sophisticated. Lucy joked with Joan on The Tonight show about sex, Lucy was very broadminded and heard similar raunchy material from Totie Fields, i remember her hating Eddie Murphy's RAW show because he said the F word every two seconds, BUT she told raunchy stories herself and loved that type of humor, but maybe you're right about NOT wanting it at a show honoring her at her Festival after she passed on. Of course nothing bothers Lucy now anyway. Lucy hated the glorifying of names like SPIC and WOP and so on on AITF but also hated the fact that Archie never paid penance for his transgressions saying the character never went FULL CIRCLE for her. The only reason i never watch AITF reruns is i find the show NOT FUNNY, except for Edith of course, her character was the only reason i watched the show back then.

 

I totally agree. I'm concerned about future festivals. I realized that Lucy wanted a center which was founded in her honor to focus on new comedy and helping aspiring comedians get started and I believe that's not only a generous thing to do but also a way to "pay it forward" by continuing comedic talent in the future. I'm just concered, though, about who (besides those wishing to hone the comedian craft or those wishing to help aspiring comedians) will come to such events from a long distance. My opinion is that people who come from across the country to Jamestown come to attend and/or participate in Lucy-related events. Those who are local to Chatauqua County and the surrounding area may be interested in attending such comedy events and I'm fine with that; it's a great thing to offer. I'm just wondering how the Center would attract people from outside the area (e.g. me who lives 7 hours away from Jamestown) to attend such events when there are comedy clubs and other similar venues where I can enjoy aspiring comedians and other performing arts and they're less than 2 hours from my home.

 

Mary Jane Fan

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