Everyone loves to laugh and there’s plenty of comedy readily available at theaters, clubs and other entertainment venues located in Western New York. As cooler weather continues to creep into our weather forecasts, we believe there is no better way to defrost your funny bone than witnessing a live comedic performance.
Here is a quick glance in alphabetical order at some of the local establishments that play host to regular stand-up comedy shows or serve as occasional sites to some type of comic relief.
341 Delaware Avenue in Buffalo | (716) 852-3835
Betty’s Bar & Grill
215 Main Street in North Tonawanda | (716) 693-6422
While not a regular host of stand-up comedy shows, Betty’s will host a special “Laugh With Us” event on Wednesday, November 26 starting at 8 p.m. The Thanksgiving Eve show will feature Chris Gullo, Sean Marciniak and Madelein Smith, with Betty’s own Shannon Dawn serving as the hostess. There will be no cover that evening and the hopes of many of Betty’s regular patrons is this show will lead to future comedy performances at the comfy and coozy local tavern.
Broadway Joe’s Bar & Grille
3051 Main Street in Buffalo | (716) 834-3650
Their long-running weekly “Open Mic” event represents a tremendous opportunity that has helped various Buffalo-based comedians get their first on-stage experience takes place every Monday starting at 8 p.m.
44 Prime Street in Buffalo | (716) 846-8200
File this one away and remember to mark your calendars for next summer when it is expected that “Open Mic Mondays” returns to Canalside Buffalo during the month of June. Interested performers pre-register and walk ups are also welcome the day of the performance as stand-up comedians, poets, singers and rappers take advantage of the opportunity to showcase their skills. For interested spectators looking for some free entertainment, there always is the possibility you can witness the birth of our region’s next breakout comedian before he or she makes it big.
4476 Main Street in Amherst | (716) 393-8669
With shows held every weekend at “The Arena” located at the corner of Main Street and Harlem Road, ComedySportz offers spectators a truly unique approach to comedy. Please note that reservations are not accepted without pre-purchasing tickets so recommendations are to purchase your tickets online or arrive about half an hour before a show starts to give yourself time to purchase your ticket. One of their best deals is the “doubleheader” where you can stay for a second show on the same night for just $5.
Helium Comedy Club
30 Mississippi Street in Buffalo | (716) 853-1211
One of the best things to happen to Buffalo in quite some time, Helium has helped raise our region’s national ranking on the comedy circuit by bringing household standup comedians to Western New York while at the same providing local comics regular stage time to hone their craft and pursue careers in what is a very competitive industry. From their “Open Mic” sessions every Tuesday at 8 p.m. to regular shows most Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, Helium is the ultimate destination for fans of comedy as well as those who tell the jokes.
Milkie’s On Elmwood
522 Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo | (716) 882-5881
The bar formerly known as The Elmwood Lounge not only hosts an “Open Mic” every Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. but also puts on some special comedic shows, including a recently held event described as a “spooktacular night of seasonally-appropriate comedy.” You never know what comedians may show up and perform at Milkie’s.
1110 Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo | (716) 882-4000
Another long-standing weekly “Open Mic” opportunity that gives up-and-coming comics as well as established stand-up comedians coveted stage time to work on their routines, rhe second floor of Goodbar is the place for laughs every Sunday starting at 8 p.m.
248 Allen Street in Buffalo | (716) 886-8539
Their weekly “ten comics for five dollars” comedy shows are perhaps Buffalo’s best bargain when it comes to total value for your entertainment dollar. Their latest approach to making us all laugh is called “Setlists Against Humanity” where some of Western New York’s top comics riff on topics drawn from the infamous “Cards Against Humanity” deck. The shows are held every Tuesday starting at 8 p.m.
Rob’s Comedy Playhouse
1340 North Forest Road in Buffalo | (716) 688-1867
Every Saturday night features two shows featuring improve and stand-up comedy performances. At $10 per show starting at either 8 p.m. or 10 p.m., it is a bargain for anyone looking for a unique evening of laughs. Longtime stand-up comedian Rob Lederman serves as your host.
1459 Hertel Avenue in Buffalo | (716) 835-1995
“Sideshow At Sidebar” takes place on Wednesday nights starting at 8:30 p.m. This is a really great place to both watch standup comics perform and for up-and-coming comedians to work on their craft because of the close and intimate relationship between the audience and the performer.
5705 Falls Avenue in Niagara Falls, Canada | (877) 968-5233
Just across the border, Yuk Yuk’s hosts live comedy every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, with 9 p.m. shows on Thursdays and Fridays and 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. shows on Saturdays. This venue regularly attracts top-notch comedians from both the United States and Canada.
We know there are other venues located throughout Western New York that host stand-up comedians on either a regular, somewhat regular or occasional basis. Are there any that you have experienced that you believe deserve a mention? Please let us know and provide your personal feedback on your favorite shows and where are the best places to see standup comedians do their thing.