First of all, 2C, don’t beat yourself up about the title.
I have tremendous respect for Canyon County. Nampa was named America’s Best Managed City this year, right?
The Boise snob in me is just, well, surprised. Or maybe jealous?
The American Comedy Co., based in downtown San Diego, is considering expanding to Idaho. But not for our capital, which this year lost its dedicated comedy club in the city center.
No. This Californian stand-up mecca will invade downtown Caldwell.
The American Comedy Co. plans to open at 815 Arthur St. It’s next to Indian Creek Plaza. On its Facebook page, the club says it will “spread to Idaho” in the spring of 2021. Tickets will go on sale soon for Jeremy Piven and Harland Williams, he said.
“We have already booked numbers for the second location in Idaho,” co-owner Rebekah Hollister confirmed in an email, “and we are very excited about this opportunity.”
Will the Caldwell Comedy Club have a full restaurant and bar like the one in San Diego?
This I do not know. Hollister did not respond to a follow-up request for a telephone interview.
What we do know is that the American Comedy Co. has at least one big fan. Comedian Joe Rogan described the San Diego club as “@ # $% in ‘perfect” in an episode of “The Joe Rogan Experience”. There is video evidence on the American Comedy Co. Facebook page.
We also know that the American Comedy Co. is not going to be crazy. It leased 4,795 square feet in the Eagle Building in Caldwell. The San Diego club, which opened in 2012, is “a comfortable 200-seat venue with an old-fashioned underground bar atmosphere,” according to its website.
“Comic book stars such as Drew Carey, Christopher Titus and Charlie Murphy have graced the American Comedy Co. stage,” the website continues. “While the San Diego American Comedy Co. welcomes the best comedians, it also welcomes open mic comedy artists and up-and-coming comedians.”
A thriving comedy destination would be great news for Treasure Valley. The Liquid Bar and Restaurant, 405 S. 8th St., will remain open. But he unplugged the comedians over the summer because of the coronavirus pandemic. The torch of comedy is believed to have passed at the Lounge at the End of the Universe, 2417 Bank Drive, off Vista Avenue and Overland Road. But COVID-19 is crippling restaurants, bars and performance spaces.
Jen Adams, owner of the Lounge at the End of the Universe, co-hosted a #SaveTheLounge Go Fund Me page. “This virus is not going to go away and without being able to welcome people, we died in the water”, a- she wrote in a November 19 update.
Whether or not Boise supports a full-time comedy club, Caldwell has a chance for success. Jeremy Aevermann, owner of Liquid in Boise, said when his bar hosted comedians, a significant number of customers came from Canyon County.
Additionally, he said, businesses in downtown Caldwell are doing better during the pandemic than most in downtown Boise.
âThey’re open and killing that over there,â he said. Indian Creek Plaza, in particular? “Every time I go, this place is just crowded, like wall to wall, with people.”
With the rapid growth of the whole of Treasure Valley, a dedicated comedy club outside of Boise doesn’t seem unreasonable. A more central location like Nampa or Meridian might have been a better choice, Aevermann said. But the cost of renting commercial space in Caldwell tends to be affordable, he added.
âI wish them good luck,â Aevermann said. âIt could do it. I did this for 10 years.
This story was originally published December 22, 2020 5:00 a.m.