VINCENNES, Ind. (WEHT) – A parade of a thousand clowns will be fooling around on the streets of Vincennes in memory of an entertainer who called himself a clown. The 17th Annual Red Skelton Festival and Parade is happening this weekend.

The festival will take place around downtown Vincennes and at the Red Skelton Museum of American Comedy and Red Skelton Performing Arts Center located at Vincennes University. The festival started on June 11 at 10 a.m. Eastern time and will run through June 12.

Comedian Richard Red Skelton was born in 1913 in Vincennes, Ind. He has stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in radio, television and film.

Events happening until 4:30 p.m. EST on June 11 on Main Street at Patrick Henry Square are:

  • I Love Lucy Show featuring Carrie and Jeff Ketterman of Louisville, Ky
  • Vincennes University Steel Drum Band
  • Kids’ games
  • Free stage entertainment
  • Donut eating contest
  • Bathtub street races
  • Food vendors

Clowns from across the nation take to the streets at 5:30 p.m. EST for the “Parade of a Thousand Clowns.” The parade will also feature Red Skelton’s widow, Lothian Skelton, and many of the comedian’s characters. The parade takes place on Hart to Fifth Streets and to Second and Main Streets.

A Red Skelton Tribute Show featuring Brian Hoffman of Pigeon Forge, Tenn., and the Kettermans will close the evening at 7:30 p.m. EST at the Red Skelton Performing Arts Center.

Festival events on June 12 happen at the Red Skelton Museum of American Comedy and Red Skelton Performing Arts Center and start at noon EST. The day will include a pair of discussions in the REDucation Room focusing on Indiana natives who have appeared in TV comedy show and films from the Golden Age of Hollywood and a classic Red Skelton film.

Historian Dr. Annette Bochenek, who hosts the “Hometowns to Hollywood” film series on Turner Classic Movies will discuss Indiana natives in classic Hollywood films and their hometowns at 1:30 p.m. EST. Dr. Bochenek will have a book signing as well.

Admission is five dollars on both days to the Red Skelton Museum. Tickets for the Red Skelton Tribute Show are $15.

More information can be found on the Red Skelton Museum’s Facebook page.