Laugh Out Loud

lolCharity and New Jersey go together. Wherever you turn there is an event, a fundraiser, a concert or a marathon dedicated to helping those that are in need. The causes vary – autism, wounded warriors, transplants for children, and on and on, because unfortunately, some of us are not as lucky as others. Do we abandon them? Not on your life, and not in New Jersey. At the forefront of these glorious efforts are the people of New Jersey, helping in any way they can, using whatever God-given skills and talents they have. They run, they dance, they bake, they hand out flyers.

And in this particular case…they make people Laugh Out Loud.

Making people laugh was the life’s work of the person whose name is at the head of the event planned for Sunday, November 2 at the Bergen Academies Auditorium in Hackensack. Gilda Radner rose to fame in the 1970’s with her brilliant comic portrayals of strange and wonderful female characters on the original episodes of Saturday Night Live. Sadly she was taken way too soon, by cancer, a disease that does not discriminate between the have’s and have-not’s.

In the spirit of Comic Relief, the charity explosion that Robin Williams, Billy Crystal and Whoopi Goldberg spearheaded in the 1980’s, comes a show that features some of the best and brightest comedians working today, and a couple of legends that have been making us laugh for decades. It begins with Alan Zweibel, the original head writer for SNL, who not only wrote those classic Gilda characters (Roseanne Rosannadana anyone?), but also the sketches that would bring fame to John Belushi, Dan Ackroyd and Chevy Chase. Next up, David Steinberg, he of the original Second City Improv group out of Chicago, the prolific story-teller on Johnny Carson and the director of some of television’s greatest sitcoms. Like outrageous? How about Gilbert Gottfried, the (ex) voice of the Aflac duck and the parrot from Disney’s Aladdin, in addition to being one of the funniest acts in the country. Comics who give back? Let’s start with Jeff Norris, a true Jersey boy who has single-handedly raised more money for more Garden State causes than anyone I know. A friend to our law enforcement personnel, the troops, the kids and our seniors, he is everywhere there are people in need. And he’s damn funny to boot. Eddie Brill has served as the talent coordinator for Late Night with David Letterman for years until recently going back to his comedy touring roots. He has shared the stage with the best of the best and this Brooklyn boy never fails to entertain. Add in two of the most brilliant and hysterical female comics working today – Caroline Rhea and Cory Kahaney. Caroline was the original host of The Biggest Loser and one of the stars of Sabrina the Teenage Witch as well as having her own talk show. Cory Kahaney has been featured on every TV talk show, from Letterman to Ferguson and has had comedy specials on HBO and Showtime. Vince August you may know as a comedian an actor or an attorney. Yes, so laugh, or he’ll take you to court. New York Magazine tapped Reese Waters as one of city’s Ten Comedians to Watch. Check out this Washington, DC transplant on Comedy Central to see what they’re talking about. Oh, there is one more act on the bill, who will be performing the musical comedy that people have eNJoyed on Fox, Showtime, HBO, Comedy Central and on stages all over the world. His name is Gary DeLena, who also just happens to be the editor of

Each and every one of these performers is there for one reason…

Gilda’s Club is an essential complement to medical care for those living with cancer and an important support system for everyone touched by cancer – men, women, teens and children – along with their families and friends. We offer free support groups, social activities and lectures and workshops to help people learn to live with cancer, whatever the outcome.

Most importantly, Gilda’s Club is a friendly, welcoming place where people share their experiences and help others, because no one should go through cancer alone.

For tickets and info:

For Gilda’s Club info:

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