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Comedians hitting the stage tonight for Paws for Laughs

Proceeds from the 'hilarious' 2-hour event go to the Humane Society of Kitchener Waterloo & Stratford Perth
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Comedian Christophe Davidson first got into comedy while in film school in Montréal. He would put hours into making comedic short films, “not knowing if people would laugh.”

But, they did. 

“Having a theatre full of people laughing from something I made was an incredible feeling, and it gave me the confidence to try making people laugh without the months of preparation and organization that a film can take,” he said. “Standup is great because you can come up with an idea and then try it out that night.” 

Davidson, who’s style comedian Steve Bennett once referred to as “idiot savant,” has been performing since 2004, and has appeared numerous times at the Just for Laughs festival in Montréal. But tonight, he will be hitting the stage at Paws for Laughs, a comedy night hosted by the Humane Society of Kitchener Waterloo & Stratford Perth.

Starting at 8 p.m. tonight, the 2-hour event will take place at the Arden Park Hotel in Stratford, and features three comedians, including Davidson, Nigel Grinstead and headliner Jeff Leeson. 

The show was sold out by this morning, raising more than $7,000. 

The first Paws for Laughs show was in early 2020. They had begun planning prior to the pandemic, but things started shutting down before it happened. It was rescheduled to later in the year, and moved to a virtual format. 

Still, it sold out, and raised over $6,000. 

Although they were able to run the event in person both this year and last, Director of Development Nick Burke said their pre-pandemic plans involved the event being much bigger.

“The more people you get attending events, the more funds are raised, but also the more we can spend on comedians with large names and better reach,” he said. “We have great comedians coming in this year. But we're hoping to continue to grow and attract larger names to come in.” 

Down the road, they also hope to be able to offer a second show. 

“So we’re looking ahead to keep growing, but at this point, we’re really pleased to do it in any fashion,” he said. 

All the proceeds from the event go directly to KWSP’s Stratford Centre. The funds are used to care for animals -- anything from medical procedures to helping cover foster care costs. 

Throughout the pandemic, they worked to move the bulk of animals coming in to foster care, “where they're more comfortable, and can still receive treatment.”

But Burke says the issue right now is that we’re moving into “kitten season.” 

“As the weather gets nicer, we see more and more [cats] coming in that are pregnant, or we're finding litters of kittens,” he said. 

In the last few weeks, they have had pregnant cats coming into the centre, and giving birth within a day or two, causing an “explosion of intakes and cats coming in.” 

Events like these help to cover the costs, especially since they don’t receive government funding. 

“We rely on events like these and grassroots donations from the community. We're humbled by the support that we're continuing to get from this community, but we're always in need of donations and support.” 

Learn more about KWSP here

You can follow Davidson on Instagram at @thischristophe.

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