Putting the fun back in fundraising with Healthy Laughs
June 26, 2012
When the People’s Health Clinic’s board of directors brainstormed about a new fundraiser last year, they didn’t want to host the same old silent auction and banquet.
They wanted to put the "fun" back in fundraising, so they came up with Healthy Laughs, a night of stand-up comedy featuring Frances Dilorinzo, Dennis Regan and Ron Pearson at the Egyptian Theatre, said Jenny Dorsey, event director for the PHC.
"Our goal was to present something that would bring a lot of laughter and fun to the community, while sharing our mission to provide quality health care to the uninsured who live in Summit and Wasatch counties," Dorsey said during an interview with The Park Record. "So, we did a stand up show."
The People’s Health Clinic is bringing Healthy Laughs back to the Egyptian Theatre on Saturday, June 30, with comedians Alonzo Bodden, Dwight Slade and Keith Barany.
Barany, who has written for "Jimmy Kimmel Live" and "Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher" will open the show, Dorsey said.
"Keith is originally from Manhattan, New York, but relocated to Salt Lake City and has been called ‘the wittiest comedian working in the United States’ by the Washington Post," she said. "He also has gone overseas to entertain the U.S. Military troops. He will be a great warm up for the other two comedians."
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Special guest Slade has also performed overseas for the troops and has been making people laugh for quite a while, Dorsey said.
"Dwight grew up in Houston, where I happen to be from, and has been performing in the Northwest for 20 years," she said. "He’s opened concerts for Jay Leno and Jerry Seinfeld and has made appearances on A&E’s ‘Goodtime Café.’"
Headliner Bodden was the winner of the third season of "Last Comic Standing," after being named the runner up in Season 2.
"He is a guest on the news quiz show on NPR, ‘Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me,’ that is hosted by Peter Sagal and Carl Kasell," Dorsey said. "Alonzo has also entertained the troops in the Middle East."
Healthy Laugh’s producer David Williams will emcee the evening.
"We are thrilled that David also supports the clinic and has joined our clinic board," Dorsey said. "He produced last year’s event and has agreed to put together another fabulous night of comedy for us."
There are a lot of benefits to laughter, according to Dorsey.
"The old saying is ‘laughter is the best medicine’ is true, because studies have found that laughter helps lower stress, prevents heart disease and boosts immunity," she said. "It also ads a lot of fun to life."
The previous Healthy Laughs fundraiser was held on Nov. 3.
"It was successful and everyone seemed to have a great time, so we thought we’d better bring it back for a second time," Dorsey said.
The main difference, of course, is the date
"There were a lot of things going on last fall," she said. "We had our first Healthy Laughs, and we were also involved in the big fundraising event Live PC/Give PC. So this time around, we decided to hold Healthy Laughs earlier and spread things around to tap into some of our second-home owners who live here in the summer and support the clinic.
"We also have a lot of people who come to vacation in Park City this time of the year right before the Fourth of July, so we thought the new date for Healthy Laughs would be a great opportunity for us to spread the world to them."
Tickets for Healthy Laughs are $60 and available by calling the PHC at (435) 333-1871 or by visiting http://www.peopleshealthclinic.org .
"All the money from ticket sales does go directly to the clinic, thanks to our fabulous event sponsors who are underwriting the event," Dorsey said.
Last year, Healthy Laughs raised $15,000.
"One of the clinic’s pressing needs that the donations will help with is lab work," Dorsey said. "Labcorp was a provider that did a majority of our lab work in the past and they decided to pull back from some of their philanthropic outreach, so they are no longer helping us. That has left a huge deficit and a huge need for our clinic to fill."
In addition to funds, the People’s Health Clinic, which was founded 12 years ago, is always in need of volunteers.
"We have a program called Reach Out and Read and need people who can read to patients, and we have opportunities for volunteers who take our patients’ vital signs and help with our events," Dorsey said.
The clinic also needs volunteer medical providers.
"We currently see an average of 55 patients a day and that’s a lot of people," Dorsey said. "We could spread the load around if we had more quality medical providers or retired physicians who would be so kind as to volunteer their services.
"We will take volunteers one day a week, or one day a month," she said. "We are very flexible."
To volunteer, people need to call our clinic, (435) 333-1850 and ask for Patti Peters or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org .
The Egyptian Theatre, 328 Main St., will host Healthy Laughs, a night of stand-up comedy that will benefit the People’s Health Clinic, on Saturday, June 30, at 8 p.m. Comics Dwight Slade, Keith Barany and Alonzo Bodden will provide the laughs for the evening. Tickets are $60 and available at http://www.peopleshealthclinic.org or by calling Jenny at (435) 333-1871.