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Help the Philadelphia Comedy Community raise enough money to build a new home & opportunity for Urban comedians. Together we can #SaveTheLaffHouse
Philly Comedy
Small Business
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
United States
1 Team Member

Hey I'm KeithFromUpDaBlock. I'm a Philadelphia-born comedian/recording artist. Last week, along with 700 comedians & fans, I watched as our home comedy club THE LAFF HOUSE closed its doors for good after 17 years. 

The Laff House was a Philadelphia landmark and home to many hilarious stand up comedians like Michael Blackson, Joe Derosa,TuRae & Kevin Hart. It gave many opportunities to newcomers & Inner-city comics like myself. 

The closing was sudden and something most of us didn't see coming. It was my first time headlining and two days before my show I learned that it would be the final night. The reasons for the closing were unclear however a year after the death of his beloved wife and co-owner Rod Millwood tearfully explained to the sold out audience that he needed time to mourn and chose to close the doors. 

Had we known that it was closing we would have pulled together to do something, ANYTHING so we could have a place to call home.

Can u help #SaveTheLaffHouse?

I'm not talking about the building or even the name. I'm speaking about the idea and belief that Urban Comedy Clubs are necessary in large cities like Philadelphia, PA. We can do shows at halls, restaurants, bars etc. but these places do not compare to an actual CLUB that is built for stand-up comedy. It gives us a professional place of reference & skills that we can use to make a career out of Stand Up Comedy. There is only one other comedy club in Philly. It's a great place but they don't specifically cater to acts from the inner city. At The Laff House you could walk in a nobody & leave a star. Most of us won't make it to be Chris Rock or Kevin Hart but the fact that we can turn our stories of pain into joy, build a following, increase our skill & make some money means the world to us and those who pay to see us. I have a plan to not only save the idea, spirit and home but to create something bigger, better and something that the comedians, promoters & fans can own and be proud of.

#SaveTheLaffHouse! Heres the plan.

We have a financial goal of One hundred thousand dollars, however, it is our ultimate wish to raise One million dollars. We have 60 days to raise at least $100,000 & it is going into a 'fixed funding' account so if we don't reach that goal whatever you donate will come back to you. You can donate anything you want from one dollar to one million. You can check on how close we are to the minimal goal online at anytime. There are also very cool and fun perks depending on the amount you donate that include T-shirts, cd's, DVD's, Laff House memorabilia, & even popular Laff House comedians performing at your house or business, doing voicemails and chores. If you donate enough you can even have a share of the new home for Philadelphia's Inner City/Urban Comedians. Heres the plan of what we want to do with the money

This plan rests on the reponsible shoulders of great Philadelphia working comics and producers like TuRae Gordon. Donations will go into a Trust. We create a board of trustees from well know Philadelphia Comedians, lawyers, consultants, promoters and audience members with TuRae Gordon as the leader & they decide the best ways to ensure that Urban comedy in Philly remains professional, exciting and progressive. I chose TuRae Gordon because he is a respected leader of the community and the only Pro Comic from The Laff House to teach classes & actually book new comedians. If anyone has their finger on the pulse of Philadelphia Comedy it's him. The panel of professionals with TuRae would vote on the best ways these funds are used and would always include a seat for fans to voice thier opinions of what the new home or actions of the community should be.

Here's how the money works

With 1 hundred thousand dollars we will: Lease/Rent a new venue. Teach classes. Throw great comedy shows. Finish the "#SaveTheLaffHouse" Documentary and enter it into film festivals. Fund social events in the community for low income people & inner city youth. Create opportunities for comedians, promoters, community activist and former staff. Compete with other promotions that do not support Inner City/Urban Comedy events. We could have some leverage and work hard to generate even more money for a new home that we can actually own, which brings me to the next financial goal.

With 1 million dollars we can: Build, design, & own a new home for Philly Comedy. The new club may not be called The Laff House but it would hold tight to the lessons learned from the old club. This new facility would be the first comedy club designed in Philadelphia with Urban/Inner-City Comedy in mind. It could include tributes to legends of Philly Comedy like Bill Cosby, Michael Blackson & Kevin Hart. It will be public owned and the comedians and fans of comedy will have the first options to buy shares allowing them own a piece of this new home. WE could hire a GM or professsional consultancy that will make sure that it succeeds as a business. We can bring in top notch comedy acts. Secure all licensing for Food/Beverage & Alcohol. Money could be set aside for promotion & marketing. It could have state of the art lighting, Two Showrooms ( One In Honor Of Bill Cosby. The other in honor of Kevin Hart.) These showrooms could be used for comedy shows, music performances, Seminars, Spoken Word events etc. A classroom for comedy & improv courses. A great kitchen and the ability to make dishes that are high quality, delicious and healthy. It would be the ultimate hub for anyone brave enough to walk in, learn, grow & see their name in lights. The classes could teach people from the inner-city that they can achieve greatness without violence, drugs and negativity. Laughter is important and comedy fans from all over could feel comfortable in a brand new place with a familiar atmosphere. It would provide jobs for comedians, promoters, Wait Staff, Cooks, Street Teams, Bartenders etc. It can have an interactive website that looks professional and fun. It would be an example of what people can accomplish when they come together in the name of Happiness. #SaveTheLaffHouse isn't a fund raiser. It's a FUN RAISER. 

I know that anyone could try to build a club in Philadelphia but it doesn't really help us if something opens and shortly closes. With this plan we can create something that would last & that represents our rich culture and history of Ethnic Urban Comedy in "The City Of Brotherly Love". This isn't about one person owning 1 club it's about ALL OF US owning a new home. So give a little or give a lot! We don't need a hand out, we just need help so WE CAN HELP OURSELVES.

People Die. Buildings Fall. Regimes Change. Legends are forever.

Help us #SaveTheLaffHouse



raised in 2 months
1% funded
No time left
$100,000 USD goal
Fixed Funding This campaign did not meet its $100,000USD funding goal by the deadline.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on September 3, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $1USD

    For one dollar a comedian from Philadelphia will follow you on Twitter & Instagram. This way you can reach out to them if you have any feedback, opinions or ideas about how to #SaveTheLaffHouse

    1 out of 10000 claimed
  • $10USD
    #SaveTheLaffHouse Sticker

    A cool sticker in support of Philadelphia's Urban Comedy Community finding a new home

    11 out of 2000 claimed
  • $25USD
    #SaveTheLaffHouse Photo

    A Group Photo of some Laff House comedians that you can directly help by donating.

    5 out of 1000 claimed
  • $50USD
    KeithFromUpDaBlock CD

    KeithFromUpDaBlock is a philadelphia born, rapper & comedian. He is often called "THE BLACK WIERD AL YANKOVICH" because he specializes in clever satire albums that include parodies of Rappers. For 50 dollars you get an autographed copy of Keith's 2nd album "Ready 2 Laff" that includes his classic hits "WE FAT", "INFECTIONS" & "BUS RYDERS ANTHEM" all songs he made popular at THE LAFF HOUSE COMEDY CLUB

    0 out of 100 claimed
  • $75USD
    "Comedy by TuRae" DVD

    Hilarious DVD starring the man who made The Laff House a trusted name and home for inner city Philly comics. Signed by TuRae himself

    1 out of 100 claimed
  • $100USD
    Silver Package

    For giving us 100 dollars you get a #SaveTheLaffHouse T Shirt. A twitter/Instagram follow & your choice of the autographed TuRae DVD or KeithFromUpDaBlock CD

    3 out of 1000 claimed
  • $250USD
    "Kevin Hart" DVD

    before he became the most popular Stand Up comedian in the USA he was "Lil Kev The Bastard" and got his start at THE LAFF HOUSE COMEDY CLUB. For 250 dollars we will give you his first DVD special that was taped at The Laff House over a decade ago, featuring Rich Salter & Kevin Hart. These limited edition DVD's were found under a pile of old promotions on the night of the clubs closing.

    1 out of 20 claimed
  • $500USD
    Joke Book Page

    an autographed page from a Laff House Comedians actual joke book. It may have worked, it may have bombed but you can have a piece of a comics soul for 500 dollars

    0 out of 5000 claimed
  • $1,000USD
    Voicemail Greeting

    a personalized outgoing voicemail greeting by a popular Laff House Headliner!!!

    0 out of 10 claimed
  • $2,000USD
    Personalized Thank You Video

    A 30 second video of popular Laff House Comedians thanking you for trying to #SaveTheLaffHouse.

    0 out of 50 claimed
  • $5,000USD
    The Gold Package

    A personalized out going voicemail greeting by TuRae. A #SaveTheLaffHouse T-Shirt. KeithFromUpDaBlock's cd. Turae's DVD. A personalized Thank You Video. An autographed & framed Page from either TuRae, KeithFromUpDaBlock or Michael Blacksons Joke Book. A group Photo

    0 claimed
  • $6,000USD
    Laff House Comedy Show

    We will come to your house and produce a pro show with Laff House wait staff, food, sound ,comics & Box office management.

    0 out of 20 claimed
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