Denver's stand-up comedy clubs ring in the New Year with Finesse Mitchell, Kenny Kane and more. - Reverb

NYE 2011: Stand-up comedy club shows

Finesse Mitchell leads the pack of comedians taking over the Denver area this weekend for New Year's Eve shows.

Finesse Mitchell leads the pack of comedians taking over the Denver area this weekend for New Year's Eve shows.

Of all the holidays, New Year’s Eve is perhaps the most joyous and party-ready, a time to spend with friends while you laugh and imbibe in elevated moods and environments.

In that way, it shares a lot with the average stand-up comedy show, and Denver’s purveyors of funny are taking advantage of that this weekend.

Leading the pack is former “Saturday Night Live” cast member and, lately, author Finesse Mitchell, who continues his run at the Improv at Northfield Stapleton today and Saturday. He’s playing 8 and 10:15 shows both nights, and the Saturday late show includes a champagne toast, happy hour prices throughout and an after-party in the Improv’s well-stocked bar. $17-$35. 8246 Northfield Blvd. 303-307-1777 or improvdenver.com.

The Comedy Works clubs are also jumping in with two different comics at their downtown and Greenwood Village clubs tonight and tomorrow. The longtime Larimer Square location will present three shows from radio personality and Denver favorite Steve “Mudflap” McGrew on Saturday, including an unusual 6 p.m. all-ages show and two 21-and-up shows at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. And yes, there’s a champagne toast and party favors at the late version. $25-$55. 1226 15th St. 303-595-3637 or comedyworks.com.

Comedy Works South in the Landmark development will host a similar deal Saturday, with a 5 p.m. all-ages show and two regular shows at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., with champagne and a late-night buffet for 10 p.m. High-energy stand-up Kenny Kane leads the sets. $25-$65. 5345 Landmark Place. 720-274-6800 or comedyworks.com.

If you’re closer to the foothills, award-winning “Laff Guru” Steven Kent McFarlin is taking over Westminster’s Wit’s End Comedy Club with 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. sets. The late show includes party favors, a balloon drop, bottomless champagne, and an appetizer and sweets buffet. $12-$35. 6080 W. 92 Ave., Suite 100. 303-430-4242 or witsendcomedyclub.com.

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John Wenzel is an executive editor of Reverb and an A&E reporter for The Denver Post. He is the author of “Mock Stars: Indie Comedy and the Dangerously Funny” (Speck Press/Fulcrum) and maintains a Twitter feed of random song titles and band names @beardsandgum.

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