At a time when laughter seems elusive and policing is often under siege – Jay Leno, the one-time king of late-night tv, brought laughter to this 90-seat Newport theater and an appreciative audience of primarily local policemen.

[ Dec. 24 – ‘5 Nights of Leno’ raises $18,000 for Newport Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge #8 ]

Leno, a part-time Newport resident, chose the local Fraternal Order of Police as the recipient of proceeds from a five-night gig at Newport’s Firehouse Theater. All shows were sold out in advance.

Each night he’s presented an hour-long stand-up comedy routine, with jokes covering everything from family to COVID. Last night, he delighted the audience, but perhaps saved his best for last when answering a few questions from the crowd.

He brought laughter when a policeman asked how the food was at Mel’s Diner. Leno praised the officer for his detective work but reminded him that Mel’s was not a real diner, but a television show, evoking laughter from the crowd. 

But he turned serious when some in the crowd thanked him for his support of the police.

“There are not enough people who say thank you,” Leno said. “All the crap you people take every day. It’s incredible…

“The sacrifices you make. Your lives are threatened every day,” he said. “I just wanted to say thank you.”

What’s Up Newp’s Rick Farrell was there to capture the night.

More Coverage – Jay Leno

Dec. 24 – ‘5 Nights of Leno’ raises $18,000 for Newport Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge #8

Dec. 24 – Leno wraps up five nights of celebrating local police

Dec. 22 – ‘Thank You,’ Leno tells cops at sold-out comedy show

Dec. 21 – Leno performs for another sold-out crowd at Firehouse Theater

Dec. 19 – Jay Leno warms up the crowd at Firehouse Theater

Dec. 13 – Jay Leno to perform at Firehouse Theatre for 5 consecutive nights

Nov. 28 – Jay Leno surprises Bit Players audience with a 30-minute set of stand-up comedy

Oct. 4, 2019 – Jay Leno, supporters raise more than $30,000 for Newport firefighter battling cancer

Sept. 9, 2019 – Jay Leno to perform at Jane Pickens Theater, proceeds will support Newport Firefighter battling cancer

Aug. 10, 2019 – Jay Leno surprises crowd at The Bit Players with twenty-minute comedy set

Frank Prosnitz

Frank Prosnitz brings to WhatsUpNewp several years in journalism, including 10 as editor of the Providence (RI) Business News and 14 years as a reporter and bureau manager at the Providence (RI) Journal. Prosnitz began his journalism career as a sportswriter at the Asbury Park (NJ) Press, moving to The News Tribune (Woodbridge, NJ), before joining the Providence Journal. Prosnitz hosts the Morning Show on WLBQ radio (Westerly), 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday, and It’s Your Business, also on WBLQ, Monday and Tuesday, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Prosnitz has twice won Best in Business Awards from the national Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW), twice was named Media Advocate of the Year by the Small Business Administration, won an investigative reporter’s award from the New England Press Association, and newswriting award from the Rhode Island Press Association.