Comedy show to kick off National Night Out at DeRidder

The countdown to this year’s National Night Out event at DeRidder will culminate Monday night with a light-hearted, family-friendly comedy show featuring comedian Rik Roberts as the beloved Barney Fife.

The show is free for all and will take place at the War Memorial Civic Center from 6-8 p.m. and will include door prizes, refreshments and the announcement of the winners of Aunt Bee’s Apple Pie Bakeoff contest.

Roberts will be on hand for a short meet and greet just at 6 a.m. before taking the stage to “nip it in the bud.”

Known nationally for his bizarre Barney Fife impersonation, Roberts is a Nashville-based comedian who rose to prominence recently best for his role as the Fife impersonator in Amazon’s first movie, “Mayberry Man.” The film was so successful that it is now being developed into a series.

Born in Kentucky, Roberts told the American press that although he had been to the state of Louisiana several times before, this would be his first trip to DeRidder and that he looked forward to finally being part of the National Night Out event.

“Jackie (Herrington), the event coordinator, actually found me on the internet a few years ago and we started planning this before Covid hit in 2020,” Roberts said.

Roberts began impersonating Barney Fife in 1994 while in a comedy group performing as celebrities.

“I needed to find someone I somehow liked or could look like. After some trial and error, I came across pretending to be Barney Fife. One thing led to another and before you didn’t know it, I had the uniforms, a holster and my badge,” Roberts said.

Roberts’ show is all about family and promises laughs for all generations of viewers through a mix of jokes, stories and songs. He said his favorite part of the performance is the ability to bring people back to a place of tender emotions for many people when they think of Mayberry.

“The funniest part is seeing how excited people are to see the deputy in uniform. It brings back such fond memories of a TV show that taught us all to slow down and treat others with kindness. respect,” Roberts said.

The comedy show will kick off the National Night Out event scheduled for Tuesday night at the Beauregard Parish Fairgrounds in DeRidder from 5-8:30 p.m.

Themed ‘Mayberry is coming to DeRidder’, DeRidder’s downtown storefronts were transformed last week to feature iconic images and scenes from the classic Andy Griffith show and Tuesday’s event promises to carry on that spirit. with free fun activities that families can enjoy together while getting to meet the law enforcement agencies that serve them.

First responders from the DeRidder Police Department, Fire Department, Beauregard Parish Sheriff’s Office and Fort Polk Military Police will be at the event to play games with their community neighbors and enjoy the night which will also feature food trucks, vendors and community resource information.

National Night Out is held nationwide with the goal of improving relations between neighbors and law enforcement in an effort to bring back a true sense of community.

Javier E. Swan