Lucie Arnaz will be in her mother’s hometown this week to host the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Rapaport Center, home of the Desilu Playhouse -- Jamestown’s newest Lucy-Desi attraction -- on Friday morning (October 14) at 10 a.m.
The renovation of the former Rite Aid Pharmacy at the intersection of Third and Main Streets in downtown Jamestown was made possible by a generous donation from William and Mary Rapaport of East Amherst, New York. Named for the studio where “I Love Lucy” was filmed, the Desilu Playhouse features exact replicas of the Ricardos’ New York City apartment and the Hollywood hotel suite where Lucy set her nose on fire with William Holden, as well as a life-sized wall mural of the original studio audience, a “Vitameatavegamin” opportunity, memorabilia from the 1950s including an “I Love Lucy” bedroom set, and more. The second floor of the Rapaport Center houses the Tropicana Room Conference Center.
As part of Friday’s celebration, the Jamestown High School A Cappella Choir Madrigal Singers, under the direction of Norman Lydell, will perform the “I Love Lucy” theme song, and some “surprise” entertainment can be expected. The event is open to the public, and admission to the Desilu Playhouse will be free all day (10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.).
October 15, 2005, is the 54th anniversary of the first broadcast of “I Love Lucy”, the most popular sitcom ever on television. According to TV Guide, “Lucy” is on television 24 hours a day, seven days a week, somewhere in the world; it has been broadcast in 77 countries, in 22 languages. TV Guide also recognized Lucille Ball as having the face that has been seen more often by more people than the face of anyone else who ever lived.
For more information about the Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center, call or visit the Lucy-Desi Gift Shop, 300 N. Main Street, Jamestown, NY 14701, (716) 484-0800 (toll-free: 1-877-LUCY-FAN) or online at www.lucy-desi.com. Hours for the Lucy-Desi Museum at 212 Pine, the Desilu Playhouse at 2 W. 3rd Street, and the Lucy-Desi Center Gift Shop are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1-5 p.m. on Sundays.