OK, Portland. You've got a trunk full of illegal fireworks, a day off, and a case of shitty but deliciously cold beer. So tomorrow's covered, but what about tonight?

If you want to have a good time and stay out a little too late but still make sure there's something left for tomorrow, a new stand-up showcase might be just the thing for you. Comedy Dream Team starts tonight, 8p.m. at the Lubritorium/ Beaterville Cafe. Admission is free, the MAX is close, the comics are funny, and the drinks are stronger than their price tag would indicate.

Joe Hieronymus started the showcase because "I like to see really good acts. I want audiences to see really good acts. I want them to come back to this show and go out to other shows because they liked what they saw." And unlike some showcases which might feature a lot of the same faces every single time, he has plans to highlight and bring forward "other really good comics who might just not be as well known."

Hieronymus, whom you might have seen at open mics and showcases all over town, or performing with his sketch group Mental State Department, has been an active part of Portland's comedy scene for about a year and a half. He chose the Lubritorium venue because Overlook is an area that currently doesn't have a lot of stand-up action. "I used to live in the neighborhood, and it's a great area. It's a neat venue, but they don't get a lot of comedy. They're excited about it, and it helps diversify what they offer."

Tonight's show includes well-known comics and Portland's Funniest People Ian Karmel and Nathan Brannon, as well as a couple of hilarious but less-recognized women, Jen Allen and Mandie Allietta.

Hieronymus is specifically designing his shows to include some familiar faces and some less-so. "I want to put in hard-working comics who've been working on and polishing their bits," he says, "and give exposure to comedians people might not know about. Portland has a great comedy scene, that our city needs to know about. Comedy here could be as big as the Timbers. We could have a 'Laugh Army' out there."

Hieronymus is well aware that comedy, like most things, is totally subjective. "Plenty of people could say, 'Who the fuck are you, Joe, why should we listen to you?'"


"I'm just a guy who loves comedy. I write because I love to read; I do comedy because I love to laugh."

Sounds like pretty good criteria to me.

So go check it out. You'll probably be glad you did.