Comedy for Charity
The Mill – December 7 at 7 p.m. ($5)
Iowa City comedian Nathan Timmel sees things from a unique point of view. His thoughts on fatherhood, society and life in general bring in fans from the Iowa City and Cedar Rapids area, but really, he draws fans wherever he’s performing. What’s special about Timmel, however, is that he makes it an annual point to bring in laughs for a good cause right here in Iowa City.
Timmel is hosting his fifth annual comedy showcase for charity on December 7 at The Mill, this time benefiting the 14 Johnson County fire departments as well as the Johnson County Ambulance Service and Emergency Management Association.
His first charity show happened by accident five years ago. Someone asked Timmel how much he would charge for to host a showcase for Team in Training, a program with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
“I responded, ‘You said you were buying lunch, right? We’re good,’” Timmel said. “Because one thing that always bothered me about some charity organizations was skimming off the top; if I was going to help the cause, I wanted to help the cause, not take from it.”
His second charity show came about to help raise money for a friend who had been injured in a car accident and had racked up some lengthy hospital bills. The sold-out show raised more than $4,000.
“After that, I was hooked,” Timmel said.
So he’s kept it going. This time, Timmel will be joined by fellow comedians Colin Ryan, Daniel Frana, Bobby Ray Bunch, Tom Garland and Mike Marvell.
Timmel has also taken his comedy overseas, not to mention last year’s comedy showcase event raised money for local troops transitioning from active duty to home life. All it takes is reaching out to a friend or local connections to get ideas for the annual showcase, according to Timmel.
He’s also fond of keeping the organizations he benefits close to home.
“I like the fact that it’s cozy,” he said. “You’re not doing something for a large, anonymous entity with a ton of overhead. You’re keeping the money in the community where it does the most good.”