LaughFest 2014 adds 4 more acts


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) – Four more shows and activities have been added to the 2014 Gilda’s LaughFest lineup.

Gilda’s LaughFest, the nation’s only community-wide festival of laughter, is scheduled for March 6-16 around the Grand Rapids area.

“We’re excited to add these shows and activities to the 2014 LaughFest lineup,” said Joanne Roehm, festival director. “All four bring something special to the festival, including a fun way to get up and get moving, laughs for the entire family including beloved pets, and entertainment geared for the 21 and up crowd.”

The Seriously Funny Family Adventure Challenge has been added to the Meijer Family Friendly Series. This free, fun-filled competition will send teams racing across downtown Grand Rapids, engaging in fun and exciting challenges that require quick thinking, fast acting and many laughs. It is designed for ages 12 and up, and all athletic abilities, or none at all. The event takes place March 16, with on-site registration beginning at noon at Grand Rapids Community College’s Gerald R. Ford Fieldhouse. To pre-register, please visit

On March 9 from 12-3 p.m. at GRCC’s Ford Fieldhouse, the Meijer Family Friendly Series People and Pets will bring the entire community together to celebrate how entertaining and funny pets can be. This free event will feature pet look-alike, best trick and costume contests, as well as activities such as a photo booth, Yesterdog hot dogs, giveaways and more. This event will appeal to even the most serious of pet owners. All pets are welcome.

Blackout Diaries is an interactive show featuring standup comedians and regular people telling true drinking stories, while the audience asks questions. Described as being a “bit like adding tequila to the Socratic Method,” this show was created by its host Sean Flannery, from Comedy Central, NPR and more, and routinely sells out in the home city of Chicago. Blackout Diaries takes place on March 9 at Perrin Brewing Company. Tickets are $30 and include two beer tickets, a sampling of appetizers and the show. The menu is customized for event attendees, and everything is made from scratch. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., the show begins at 8 p.m. Attendees must be 21 or older.

Carly Aquilino, Chris Distefano and Andrew Schulz of MTV’s hit reality comedy series “Guy Code” are coming to Grand Valley State University’s Kirkhof Center’s Grand River Room on March 13 at 9 p.m. This show’s seriously funny cast will focus on the different codes that exist between girls and guys in a snappy and entertaining fashion. Presented in conjunction with GVSU’s Spotlight Productions, this show is free with a Fast Pass. A $5 donation is suggested at the door. A Fast Pass guarantees a seat at the event as long as the holder is seated at least 15 minutes prior to the beginning of the show. Fast Passes can be picked up beginning Feb. 17 at LaughFest Central in the Grand Rapids Art Museum (GRAM) in downtown Grand Rapids.

2014 LaughFest headliners include Jay Leno, Jim Gaffigan, Lily Tomlin, Sinbad, and Chris Tucker. Other acts announced include Mike Birbiglia, Maria Bamford, Miranda Sings, Todd Barry, Rory Scovel and Nick Thune, The Tenderloins, Judah Friedlander and Jen Kirkman. Showcases and competitions returning to this year’s LaughFest include Best of the Midwest, National Stand-up Comedy Showcase, and Clean Comedy Showcase.

Tickets can be purchased online at (search LaughFest), at the Van Andel Arena Box Office, or at Ticketmaster outlets through closing day of LaughFest. Tickets will also be available starting Feb. 17 at LaughFest Central in the GRAM.

Gilda’s LaughFest was created by a team at Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids in 2011. Since inception, LaughFest has averaged 55,000 attendees per year. Proceeds from the festival will support the free cancer, grief and emotional health programs offered through Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids. Visit or call 616-735-HAHA (4242) to learn more about Gilda’s LaughFest.

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