Changes ahead for new Wisecrackers season

Wisecrackers’ New Years Eve show will feature headliner Justin Ruppel.
Wisecrackers’ New Years Eve show will feature headliner Justin Ruppel. Photo provided

There are some big changes in store for Wisecrackers Comedy Club in 2018, including a new venue and a new type of show to start the season.

The group’s winter season will open on New Year’s Eve with an evening of music and comedy at Lettermans Sports Grill in State College. The show will feature headliner Justin Ruppel, who is best known for an appearance on “First Impressions with Dana Carvey,” a game show that pitted comedians against each other to do celebrity impressions.

The evening will also include musical performances by Greg Smith and Tommy Vella, whom Wisecrackers club manager Tom Bruce said will create a cabaret atmosphere leading up to the ball drop at midnight.

“The audience interaction promises to be extremely unique and make for a fun evening of entertainment,” Bruce said.

Ruppel will return to the area Jan. 5 and 6 for the first performances of the Wisecrackers regular season, which runs through the end of March.

Lettermans will serve as Wisecrackers’ new home moving forward, Bruce said. Shows were previously held at the Ramada State College Hotel and Conference Center and Celebration Hall. Bruce said the new venue will allow Wisecrackers patrons to add dinner and drinks into their evening of comedy.

One highlight of the season, Bruce said, comes Jan. 19 and 20 with Mike Aronin, a comedian and motivational speaker with cerebral palsy.

Bruce saw success bringing a comic with a similar style to Wisecrackers a few years ago and came across Aronin while searching for someone else who could fit the bill this season.

“His message is that you’re only challenged by your mind and can overcome any obstacle that comes your way if you put your mind to it,” Bruce said.

State College is one of several Wisecrackers locations throughout Pennsylvania. Bruce said he tries to bring four to eight new comedians to the area each year along a few returning favorites.

“The comics say the crowd here are appreciative intelligent and well-behaved,” Bruce said. “They love coming to State College to work.”

All Wisecrackers performances begin at 9 p.m. at Lettermans Sports Grill, 1031 E. College Ave., State College. For more information, visit www.wisecrackers.biz.

Wiscrackers Winter Season

Dec. 31: Justin Rupple and Brad Lowery

Jan. 5-6: Justin Rupple and Joe Bubblewicz

Jan. 12-13: Jim Dailakis and Michael Aronin *two shows Jan. 20

Jan. 26-27: Jay Black and Brian Cichocki

Feb. 3-4: Mike Yard and Mark Riccadonna

Feb. 10-11: Joe DeVito and Meghan Hanley

Feb. 16-17: Brian McFadden and Tom McTiernan

Feb. 23-24: Andrew Kennedy and Clayton Fletcher

March 2-3: Raymond “The Amish Comic” and David Beck

March 9-10: Mike Cannon and Matt Holt

March 16-17: Don Reese and Mike Stankiewcz

March 23-24: Tina Giorgi and Ben Moore