Business, dinner and a laugh: LAEGC to adopt ‘Tonight Show’ theme

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LEWISTON — In the role of Johnny Carson, Mike Miclon.

Standing in for Ed McMahon, Jason Tardy.

And, in place of a hot, young starlet, Angus King.

The Lewiston-Auburn Economic Growth Council is rolling out this year’s dinner “Tonight Show”-style.

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On a stage at the Ramada Inn will be a set with couch and desk. In the background, a backdrop of L-A. Throughout the evening: local commercials, a man-on-the-street interview and a Top 10 list.

“We’re very, very excited about it,” said LAEGC spokesman Paul Badeau. “I think because there are so many different events vying for people’s attention, it’s important to have an event people want to come to versus they have to come to.”

It’s planned for May 13. Registration is open up to May 11 for $45 per person. Badeau anticipates a turnout of 300-plus to the group’s 29th annual dinner and business forum, which they’ve dubbed “The L-A Tonight Show!” As of Friday, about 180 people had registered.

He said that Miclon, who hosts a late-night send-up called The Early Evening Show at The Oddfellow Theater in Buckfield, will move the night along as host. Guests planned for his couch: former Gov. King, former Auburn Mayor Lee Young, Dana Connors, president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, and LAEGC board chair Alan Hahnel.

Musical guest Denny Breau will perform and be asked about the Twin City’s musical roots.

“It’s also a wonderful way to mix business with pleasure,” Badeau said.

Local economic development achievement awards will also be made that night. The hope is that the format creates more of a dialogue, he said, “which I think people retain better and find more interesting.”

LAEGC’s gone for levity once before: In 2003, The Second City improv actors out of Chicago performed during that annual dinner.

kskelton@sunjournal.com

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