Candidates' Comedy Night Comes to Improv Aug. 16

The fifth annual Candidates' Comedy Night on Aug. 16 will spotlight the comedic talents of candidates running for political office in the November general election to raise money for the Allegheny County Music Festival Fund.

Some national, state and local candidates running in the November general election will be trading the campaign trail for the Pittsburgh Improv stage at the Waterfront in Homestead next Thursday, Aug. 16, to present a night of comedy to benefit area children.

Celebrating its fifth anniversary, Candidates' Comedy Night spotlights the comedic talents of several local candidates—in a fundraiser to benefit the Allegheny County Music Festival Fund.

This year’s featured performers are: incumbent U.S. Senator Bob Casey, a Democrat; incumbent Congressman Mike Doyle, a Democrat, and Dr. Hans Lessmann, his Republican challenger in the 14th Congressional District race; Washington County Commissioner Larry Maggi, the Democrat running in the 18th Congressional District race; state treasurer candidates Robert McCord, a Democrat, and Washington County Commissioner Diana Irey Vaughan, a Republican; D. Raja, Republican candidate in the 37th state Senate District; and incumbent Sen. Jay Costa, running for the 43rd state Senate seat.

Gene Collier, columnist with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and professional stand-up comedian, will emcee this hilarious adult-oriented fundraiser. Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald is special guest.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. and the show will begin at 7:30 p.m. Tickets, available now, are for sections of eight seats at the following levels: Gold seating, a $750 donation; or silver seating, a $500 donation. Sections may be reserved by calling the Allegheny County Department of Human Services event line at 412-350-3428.

The event is hosted by the county Department of Human Services in collaboration with the Allegheny County Music Festival Fund Advisory Committee.

The Allegheny County Music Festival Fund (ACMFF) was established in 2000 by then-Family Court Judge Max Baer and county Department of Human Services Director Marc Cherna to aid children and youth receiving services through the Department of Human Services or the juvenile section of the Family Division of the Court of Common Pleas. The fund creates a resource that pays for life-enriching opportunities and items that are not otherwise available through traditional government funding.

The ACMFF is totally dependent upon the generosity of county residents, according to the Allegheny County website. For the first eight years, it was replenished using proceeds from a single music concert, the Allegheny County Music Festival, hosted by Allegheny County at Hartwood Acres Park. One of a generally free series of summer outdoor concerts, this special event suggests a donation-per-vehicle. Proceeds from a 50/50 raffle are also added to the fund.

In 2008, an additional fundraiser was added, necessitated by the popularity of the fund among providers and children.

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