When Joke Joint was booted from its Lilydale space, co-owner Ken Reed assured us that the comedy venue wasn't dead, just looking for new digs.
“We are looking for a new location that will allow us to continue to be in or near to St. Paul, with easy highway access and -- ideally -- free parking,” he told City Pages in February after learning that River Bluffs Shopping Center, which housed JJ, had been sold for redevelopement.
This morning, the club announced that it will be teaming up with Lowertown LGBTQ space CAMP Bar to keep the laughs going.
"The Joke Joint is going CAMPing!" the announcement states. "Before you pack the sleeping bags and S’more supplies we mean we are joining forces with Camp Bar in St. Paul to continue offering amazing comics from across the country."
The Joke Joint will be using CAMP's showroom, a theater space separate from the bar and restaurant, which frequently hosts touring stage productions, open mics, cabaret shows, and dance performances.
Joke Joint is wasting no time catching up; things kick off this week with Kjell Bjorgen on Friday and Saturday. Weekly shows are scheduled through mid-October so far, with sets from Paul Hooper, Isaac Witty, Jim McCue, and Sherlonda Sharp taking the stage this season.
And while their search for a space offering free parking didn't quite work out (you'll need to use meters or ramps to visit CAMP), they do offer a $3 discount for those who use the promo code "camping" while buying tickets online.
This isn't Joke Joint first move. The bar and club was originally located in the Ramada Mall of America Hotel.
“The club was started in 2007 by my wife and I,” says Reed. “At the time, I was a touring headlining comedian in Florida, and my wife was pregnant with our first child. I decided I didn’t want to be on the road every weekend, so we thought it would be more fun to own a club and still work with funny people.”
You can check out Joke Joint's new schedule online.