Fundraising in Vernon is being turned on its ear again by three men and a crate of mousetraps.
And this time there’s an even bigger spotlight on the show.
Last March, Vernon Christian School invited veteran comedy group The Fidgets to perform at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre as part of a fundraiser for the school. The comedy night was an overwhelming success and The Fidgets have agreed to a return engagement Wednesday, Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. Tickets to the show are $20 each ($75 for a family of four) available at ticketseller.ca or 250-549-SHOW (7469).
This year, the Vernon show is being recorded for a possible Netflix USA deal.
“We were contacted by a company in Nashville, Crown Entertainment, that asked for the rights to shop us to Netflix and Amazon Prime,” said John D. Hollingsworth, leader of the comedy troupe.
“We have hired Film Factory out of Kelowna to help us get the footage we need, 4K cameras, four camera shoot, the works. Once the show is over, we’ll send the raw footage to our crew back home and they can start editing while we continue our tour.”
For over a decade, Dave Lane, Chris Reid and Hollingsworth have been performing across North America. The finale for their one-of-a-kind fundraiser involves filling the stage with mousetraps and performing the last sketch barefoot and blindfolded.
“It takes a lot to convince a family to leave the comfort of their home and commit to attending anything,” said Hollingsworth. “Watching grown men crawl across a stage filled with hundreds of authentic mousetraps does the trick, every time.”
Aside from the mousetrap sketch, Lane, Reid and Hollingsworth add another unique twist to every show: clean comedy.
“We make sure that every show we perform has two elements: 1. It’s ‘hold your sides’ funny. 2. It’s ‘invite your grandma’ clean,” said Lane.
“It’s a deadly combination for a successful event,” added Reid. “Clean enough to bring your entire family, so funny that your face will be sore and unique enough to draw big crowds of curious people.”
There’s a long list of charities that have tried this new fundraising format.
“The mousetrap way of fundraising is quickly replacing other events,” said Reid, noting that family events that are unique and funny are hard to find, so attendance is always strong.
The Fidgets are an improv comedy team based in Sarnia, Ont.