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West Linn Library to host 'Comedy Night'

Doug Erickson wishes he could say this is the first time a library has morphed into a comedy club.

After all, the laughter and banter of live comedy hardly seems to fit with the stereotypical image of a library: quiet, stiff, filled with patrons lost in their own literary worlds.

Yet when Erickson, West Linn’s Library Director, scheduled “Comedy Night” at the West Linn Public Library March 31, he was surprised to find that several performers had done a similar event at the nearby Sandy Public Library. “(Comedian Betsy Kauffman) did this in Sandy a couple years ago,” Erickson said. “So it’s not the first time they’ve had comedy at night (at a library), but I think it’s going to be pretty cool.”

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The event, which starts at 7 p.m., will feature four standup comics: Kauffman (who will also host the event), Alex Falcone, Joanie Quinn and Bri Pruett. Entry is free and refreshments — including beer and wine — will also be available through Clackamas Catering.

“You should expect to laugh,” Kauffman said. “It will be an evening of standup comedy with four performers. It always surprises me that there are people who have never seen live comedy; it’s really fun.”

Kauffman was joined by Quinn at the Sandy Library event, and both said it was a surprisingly successful event. “Apparently library comedy is a genre,” Kauffman said. “A whole bunch of people showed up. They were a great audience.”

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Added Quinn: “Surprisingly, audiences enjoy making noise in libraries after they are closed!”

Kauffman, for her part, has a special connection to the West Linn library.

“I’ve known (librarian) Elaine Spence for 20 years,” Kauffman said. “She knew I did comedy and asked me to perform at the library’s comedy night.

“I’ve been indebted to her since she brought a big lasagna to our house after my first child was born. It was huge.”

Kauffman and Quinn have worked together as “comedy partners in crime” for more than five years, three of which were spent co-producing the Split Spilt? Milk Comedy showcase in Portland. Falcone, meanwhile, is a local comedian who also writes for several publications like The Portland Mercury and Willamette Week. Pruett, another Portland comedian, writes a column for The Portland Mercury and performs at local clubs.

For parents who are considering bringing kids, Kauffman said the jokes at Comedy Night will fall under the PG-13 category.

“We’re not prudes,” she said. “But it won’t be ear-blistering.”

Patrick Malee can be reached at 503-636-1281 Ext. 106 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..