Comedian Dave Chappelle given keys to city

Dave Chappelle
Dave Chappelle AP

Comedian Dave Chappelle was presented the keys to the city by Mayor Steve Benjamin on Friday.

Chappelle was in town for two performances at Township Auditorium Friday night.

Before the shows, he stopped by Allen University’s Chappelle Auditorium which was named for his great grandfather, African Methodist Episcopal Bishop William D. Chappelle, an Allen president, and local businessman.

Chappelle’s connection to the city was spelled out in a proclamation declaring February 3 ‘Dave Chappelle Day.’

Dave Chappelle Day Proclamation

“WHEREAS, Dave Chappelle is a one-of-a-kind comic whose humor has made him one of the most successful comedians of the past decade; and

WHEREAS, Mr. Chappelle’s great grandfather Bishop William David Chappelle was a preacher, teacher, and businessman in Columbia, South Carolina;

WHEREAS, the Chappelle Auditorium at Allen University and Chappelle Memorial AME Church in Columbia were founded in the family’s name; and

WHEREAS, Bishop William David Chappelle’s legacy lives on in Mr. Chappelle’s life; and

WHEREAS, Mr. Chappelle has been awarded two Vision Awards from the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications, has been nominated for two NAACP Image Awards and two Teen Choice Awards; and

WHEREAS, Comedy Central ranks Chappelle as Number 43 of “100 Greatest Stand-Ups of All Time,” and Esquire Magazine has called him “the comic genius of America,” and he was featured on the cover of GQ Magazine’s Man of the Year issue in 2015; and

WHEREAS, Mr. Chappelle’s work continues to inspire, encourage and, of course, make people laugh.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Stephen K. Benjamin, Mayor of the City of Columbia, South Carolina, along with my fellow members of Columbia City Council, do hereby proclaim Feb. 3, 2017, to be Dave Chappelle Day in the great City of Columbia and urge my fellow citizens to recognize and participate in its observance.

Known for his roles in “The Nutty Proffesor,” “Half Baked,” “You’ve Got Mail,” and his sketch comedy series “Chappelle's Show,” the comedian also signed a Netflix deal to deliver three standup comedy specials in 2017.