DECATUR — Comedian Bill Engvall is about to put away his sign for good.
“I’m just retiring from the road,” he said. “I’ve been doing this for 42 years. It’s been a great journey and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.”
As a comedian headlining the 2022 Devon Lakeshore Amphitheater season, Engvall will stop in Decatur at 8 p.m. Friday in the Nelson Park venue.
Engvall’s catch phrase and the title of his 1996 album, "Here’s Your Sign," introduced the comedian to the comedy world. He then began appearing on various television programs, including "Last Man Standing" featuring Tim Allen and his own show, "The Bill Engvall Show."
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Engvall was a member of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour with fellow comedians Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy and Ron White. His most recent show, which was filmed in September on Peacock’s Circle TV, was “Blue Collar Auction,” a series featuring Engvall as head auctioneer, engaging viewers in competitions as various items are sold to the highest bidder.
Friday’s standup show will be family-friendly, free of political satire or controversial subjects. “There’s no swearing or anything like that,” Engvall said. “If the kids are into comedy, they’ll like this.”
The popular “Here’s Your Sign” piece will continue to be part of the show, according to Engvall. “I could do 90 minutes of a really good comedy show, but if I don’t do the “Here’s Your Sign,” people will be disappointed,” he said. “I don’t mind doing them. I still love them, because it happens to everybody.”
When the pandemic kept entertainers from traveling, Engvall found he enjoyed the time at home. “I’ve got grandkids. I want to be a part of their lives,” he said.
The comedian expects he will miss performing on stage to a live audience, but he said he may return if boredom strikes. “I can go back out,” he said about the standup shows.
Retiring is an open-plan right now for Engvall and his family. On the list so far include golfing and horseback riding. “We’re going to take it one step at a time and enjoy every step,” he said. “My body’s starting to tell me that traveling is taking its toll. I don’t want to wear myself out.”
The comedy tour will end on New Year’s Eve in Salt Lake City, Utah, near his home. “And I’m looking forward to being the fun granddad,” Engvall said.
The comedy show already has a relaxed atmosphere with a homey vibe, according to Engvall.
“I want you to look at it like we’re just sitting around your living room and I’m the funny guy doing all the talking,” he said.