Tag Archives: The Laughing Devil

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Wednesday: Overcast with a chance of rain. High of 66. Winds from the NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 50%. Wednesday night: Overcast. Low of 55. Winds from the ENE at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the North after midnight. Chance of rain 20%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: She-Devil Comedy Festival

The Laughing Devil’s first annual She-Devil Comedy Festival, running October 24 through 28, is a 100-woman-strong showcase, featuring some of the funniest up-and-coming queens of stand-up. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Suspect accused of killing cop, driver in custody at hospital with self-inflicted gunshot wounds

Police captured the suspected killer of two people, including a Nassau County police office, after a witness heard gunshots coming from a car in Queens. Read more Queens Courier

Suspect charged with hurling anti-gay slur, using taser on man in Queens

A man has been charged with a hate crime in connection to an attack in Ridgewood, Queens, in which he allegedly shocked another man with a Taser while calling him an anti-gay slur. Read more: CBS New York

Man says he was paid to spy on Muslim groups

Outraged members of the Muslim Student Association at John Jay College say Shamiur Rahman told them he was a paid informant of the police after pretending to be a part of their group. Read more: NY1

Union slaps Queens Library with lawsuit for Board of Trustees meeting minutes

Members of the union representing Queens Library workers are suing the library officials for refusing to give them copies of minutes from Board of Trustees meetings. Read more: New York Daily News

Dozens speak out in City Council members’ hearing on stop-and-frisk policy

Residents on both sides of the issue voiced their concerns to New York City lawmakers Tuesday night about the practice of stopping and frisking hundreds of thousands of people a year. Read more: CBS News

Billionaire gives $100 million to Central Park

A billionaire hedge fund manager pledged $100 million Tuesday to the private organization that maintains Central Park in partnership with New York City. Read more: ABC New York/AP

Serious birth complications rising in the U.S

Severe complications from childbirth are rare in the U.S., but they are becoming more common, a new government study finds. Read more: Reuters

 

Weekend events in Queens


| editorial@queenscourier.com

File photo

Friday, August 17

6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m., Both children and adults are invited to a fundraising event at the Forest Park Carousel to raise money for programs and services for those who have Alzheimer’s.

7 p.m. – 10 p.m., “Taxi Driver” at the Museum of the Moving Image: Martin Scorsese’s dark, dyspeptic view of New York, made all the more menacing by a brassy Bernard Herrmann score, is also a great visual love letter to the Big Apple.

7: 30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m., Irish Movie Night at the New York Irish Center: “Eat the Peach,” Two young out-of-work Irish men are watching an old Elvis Presley movie in which a carnival cyclist performs an act called the Wall of Death. Transfixed, they decide to put together their own “Wall of Death.” The film is based on the true story of two brothers-in-law, frustrated by life in a small border town.

8 p.m. – 10:30 p.m., Rufus King Park movie series presents “Knocked Up,” a Judd Apatow film about a one-night stand that results in an unexpected pregnancy for entertainment reporter Alison (Katherine Heigl), who vows to be a good mom and keep her career on track by trying to make things work with the slacker (Seth Rogen) who knocked her up.

8 p.m. – midnight, The Laughing Devil presents a showcase of the best comics that New York City has to offer, featuring a rotating cast with a healthy mix of celebrities and the next-big-thing.  Tonight’s show features Steve Hofstetter.

8:30 p.m., This outdoor movie series at Hudson River Park features family-oriented PG movies suitable for all ages. Tonight’s film will be “Back to the Future.” Free popcorn will be provided.

Saturday, August 18

7:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., Saturday is the last day of the fifth annual Summer Streets. About seven miles of New York City’s streets will be opened up for running, biking, walking and playing from the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park, along Park Avenue and connecting streets. There will also be activities and giveaways, including rock climbing and free bike helmets.

11 a.m. – 3 p.m., FlyNYC 2012: Come fly a kite at FlyNYC 2012, a kite festival in Riverside Park. There will also be kite making, live entertainment and other activities.

11 a.m. – 5 p.m., South Queens Park Association presents its second annual collectible car show at Roy Wilkins Park.

5 p.m. – 10 p.m., First Annual Rockaway Beach Club Crawl: Get to know your boardwalk concessions at Rockaway Beach.

8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., At the Alley Pond Environmental Center astronomer Mark Freilich will teach you all about the stars and the features of the moon with an outside viewing using a professional telescope.

10:30 p.m. – midnight, Playing with Reality’s Late-Night Sandbox Series: Three unplanned stories. three audience volunteers. one unforgettable show each month. Here’s your chance to step on stage with highly skilled inter-actors and become the star and co-creator of an entirely unscripted journey. Or, just sit back and enjoy. This one-of-a-kind sandbox is waiting for you. Fill your pail with enthusiasm, jump in and play.

Sunday, August 19

9 a.m. – 4 p.m., The 3rd Summer Craze Car Show & Blood Drive will have trophies, dash plaques, goody bags  and raffles.  All Donations will go directly to St. Mary’s Hospital for Children in Bayside.

1 p.m. – 7 p.m.Astoria Park Shore Fest: A Car-free celebration on Shore Boulevard adjacent to Astoria Park. It will include educational activities, live music, fitness programs and food-tastings with various neighborhood restaurants.

6 p.m. – midnight, Long Island City: Art, Graffiti, Infrastructure, and Sunset, One subway stop away from midtown Manhattan, Long Island City is undergoing its second makeover as its industrial landscape gives way to artists’ venues, the reuse of its daylight factory buildings, new condos and shorefront parks.

Devilish Grin – Long Island City resident brings comedy to the community


| smosco@queenscourier.com

Steve Hofstetter – LIC resident opening The Laughing Devil, a neighborhood comedy club set to open in December at 47-38 Vernon Boulevard.

When the crowds of artists came to LIC all those years ago in search of lofts and solitude, they inadvertently opened the door to curious developers with a hankering for waterfront property. As the condos shot up, young families moved in and they were soon followed by food purveyors because everyone needs to eat.

Now after decades of growth, the people crave more – the people crave entertainment.

Enter Steve Hofstetter and Jacob Morvay – two LIC residents opening The Laughing Devil, a neighborhood comedy club set to open in December at 47-38 Vernon Boulevard.

Hofstetter, a Queens native and professional comedian, has comedy clubs in Indianapolis and Atlanta, but felt the time was right to bring humor home to LIC.

“You risk failure with any project you’re involved in and failing in front of friends and family might be the worst, but I think it’s only going to come with benefits,” said Hofstetter, 32. “This is my home and I’ve got people rooting for me – that gives us the early boost we need to get off the ground.”

Hofstetter’s career in comedy first got off the ground when he was 13 years old and, like most men, he was motivated by the lure of a woman. He followed a girl he had a crush on into an improv class, which she quit two weeks later – but by then, he was already hooked.

“Men chasing women has inspired some of the greatest decisions in our society,” he said, adding that he and his wife decided on LIC because they wanted to move somewhere with more space. “This time I actually love her.”

Standup comedy, his second love, is something that Hofstetter started performing because it shined the spotlight squarely in his talent – and he didn’t have to rely on other performers as with improv comedy.

“Standup is a solitary art. In improv, either someone better than you steals the scene or you’re the best and you have to carry people with you,” he said. “The days that I perform are better than the days that I don’t.”

And now that he’s anchored in LIC, Hofstetter wants to bring his neighbors a fun night out and he also wants them to know that he has their best interest in mind. He’s aware that some might have reservations about a comedy club in the neighborhood – will it be loud, will there be drunks?

At a recent Community Board meeting, Hofstetter told supporters and detractors that he and his partner won’t ruin the community because they are the community.
“I told them that no one in this room lives closer to this club than I do. I am concerned about the neighbors because I am a neighbor. It’s strange to be a comedian and a curmuggeon at 32, but I’m really not the type to party all night,” he said. “As for noise level, show me a comedian that gets such a reaction that he can be heard on the streets, and I’ll hire that guy.”

Currently, there is a petition running on the www.laughingdevil.com asking those from the area to show community support. Anyone who signs the petition gets one free ticket.

The community has been far more supportive than he was told they would be, giving Hofstetter more time to focus on luring talent. He’s made plenty of connections at his other clubs – working with such comedians as Dave Attell and Margaret Cho – and he’ll use those business connections to book performers at The Laughing Devil.
But the comedy club will invite more than well-known talent onto its stage. Hofstetter said that there will be open-mic nights, and that local flavor will be a driving force behind the personality of the club.

And according to Hofstetter, Queens has plenty of flavor.

“I wasted a good amount of my life looking down on Queens,” said Hofstetter when asked about the borough’s reputation and its relationship with Manhattan. “You’re always told by others that it’s not good enough, but now that I’m older and hopefully more mature, I can recognize that there are some wonderful things here. As the people of Queens, it’s our responsibility to make the borough better in people’s minds.”

Speaking locally Hofstetter said that in a lot of ways, LIC is leading Queens and signaling the rest of the city that this is the borough of change and opportunity. A lot has changed since Hofstetter was a kid in Queens – back then, his father warned him about venturing into LIC.

“I’m all for the redevelopment because it’s being done responsibly. People aren’t being kicked out of their homes – developers are buying abandoned or for sale properties and building newer ones,” he said. “What could be wrong with that?”

Hofstetter’s goal is to open the club on December 15 with a liquor license and the full support of the community. Neighborhoods need happy residents and as Hofstetter hopes to prove, laughing together makes living together much easier.

“The reason I love standup as an art form is because it’s so uniquely communal. Laughter is a communal response and anyone who says they can see it on TV doesn’t understand,” he said. “It’s not just a show, it’s an experience and that’s why I love performing and I’m thrilled to do it in my own backyard.”