Comedians Robert Klein and Martin Short highlight this weekend’s 10th annual Great American Comedy Festival in Norfolk in honor of 1943 Norfolk High School graduate, Johnny Carson.
Festival executive director Lori Williams says the 30-year host of “The Tonight” Show never forgot his roots.
“Johnny loved Norfolk and we see that when we drive around our community with all of the things that he supported in our community,” Williams says. “This is our way, as a community, to give back to the love that he shared with us and that is to go to an event that is created in the honor of his legacy.”
The winners of the past years’ professional comedians’ competitions will be back for the Best of the Fest tonight including 2014 winner Brian Kiley and 2013 winner Phil Palisoul.
Tomorrow afternoon, Nebraska native Dick Cavett will moderate a round table of three generations of “Tonight Show” writers.
Tomorrow night’s finale features emcee Martin Short and Robert Klein who will accept the Johnny Carson Comedy Legend Award.
“Johnny Carson’s foundation is very particular about using his name,” Williams says. “The fact that we can use an award with his name on it is really prestigious. There are two in the world and we have one of them in Norfolk, Nebraska.”
All events are at Norfolk High School’s Johnny Carson Theatre.
By Paul Hughes, WJAG, Norfolk