Dinner tickets virtually bought out, comedy present in assist of New Kensington’s Knead Cafe

Tickets to a dinner and comedy show in downtown New Kensington are almost sold out – and this is no joke.

The event on November 12, headlined by musical comedian Mark Eddie, will benefit the Knead Community Cafe and will take place in its banquet hall.

By Friday, only about 25 of 250 tickets were left, said show organizer Robert Heinle. He sells them in the café on Saturdays between 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. – that’s the only way to get them.

“This is a great thing. People don’t hesitate to buy tickets for it, ”he said. “The Knead Cafe has a good reputation. People are very eager to go. It’s going to be an exciting night for sure. “

Knead, a nonprofit at 1011 Barnes St., celebrated its fourth birthday in February.

The cafe follows a Pay-What-You-Can / Pay-It-Forward model, where diners pay a recommended donation for groceries, more if they can or less if they can’t, or in exchange for up to to volunteer for an hour anything that is not on the menu, said Mary Bode, who founded the café with her husband Kevin.

Mary Bode said they were excited about the comedy show.

“It’s always wonderful when a member of the public reaches out to us and we can work with them,” she said. “We are amazed at how the community reacts to the café. People just come up to us with different ideas to help us with. We are very blessed to have such opportunities. “

About 30% of Knead’s operating budget comes from fundraisers, she said. Like other restaurants and businesses, it faces higher costs and supply issues.

“This is a great opportunity for us to make sure we can fulfill the café’s mission to feed everyone regardless of their means,” said Mary Bode.

Tickets to the show are $ 35 and include a buffet dinner from 6:30 p.m. The show opens at 8:00 p.m. with Pittsburgh comedian David Michael as the opening act.

When the show ends around 10 p.m., Heinle said, they’ll lead people to the Voodoo Brewery and Las Hachas, an ax thrower slated for its grand opening on November 6th.

“It’s going to be a great night for New Kensington,” said Heinle, 55, a Lower Burrell insurance agent. “Who would have thought that you could go out in New Kensington for a nice dinner and show on a Friday night? New Kensington is back. “

Heinle said he organized comedy shows in the late 1990s and early 2000s to raise funds for the Elks in Lower Burrell.

“After this place closed, I ran out of space to do these shows,” he said.

Heinle says he knows Kevin Bode, who showed him her renovated banquet hall. He knew it would be a great place for a show.

“I knew I could sell enough tickets to make the cafe some money. It was really a breeze for me, ”he said. “Selling the tickets was easy. The city is hungry for it. “

Heinle said he plans for the show to become an annual event taking place on the second weekend in November.

“Knead Cafe is one of the original stores that helped revitalize this downtown corridor. Supporting them was certainly a good goal. What better way to bring the community together than on a comedy show? ”He said. “For Kevin and Mary Bode, it’s not just about feeding the hungry. Your goal is to bring the community together. When you break bread with someone, it brings you closer. It brings the community together. It brings people together. “

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a contributor to Tribune Review. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, brittmeyer@triblive.com, or on Twitter.

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