The Seattle neighborhood now boasts four comedy venues on a four-block strip.
Greenwood: It’s not young, it’s not hip, it’s not trendy.
Then why has it become a mini-hub for a burgeoning comedy scene?
On Thursday, March 26, Andy Haynes, a comedian with serious late-night TV credits — “Conan” and “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” — will perform at Greenwood’s Canadian-themed hockey bar, The Angry Beaver. The show is part of “Hot Dam,” a new monthly comedy showcase on the final Thursday of every month.
‘Hot Dam! Comedy at the Angry Beaver’ with Andy Haynes, Christan Leonard, Andre Pegeron, Rachel Walls and Isaac Novak
Then there’s the Pocket Theater, which opened in 2014 and hosts improv, standup and sketch comedy as well as staged readings, plays and dance performances. Naked City Brewing hosts monthly comedy nights including “Laugh Riot” every second Saturday.
Most Read Entertainment Stories
- Former Washington resident Stephanie Land's bestselling memoir inspires Netflix series 'Maid'
- R&B superstar R. Kelly convicted in sex trafficking trial
- 'SNL' returning with all but one incumbent cast member
- Delayed Van Gogh show gets a new opening date in Seattle though still no location
- The mystery of the missing Van Gogh show: Seattle ticket holders' frustration grows
And Couth Buzzard Books hosts events nearly every night of the week, including a monthly comedy open mike every fourth Friday of the month.
All four of these establishments are located along a four-block strip of Greenwood Avenue North near North 85th Street.
“I used to live in Greenwood, then I moved away then moved back here,” said Couth Buzzard owner Theo Dzielak, who opened the store in its current space in 2009. “ I just really like the feel of the neighborhood.”
Couth Buzzard Books presents not just open mikes, but music and poetry events, readings and open jazz jams.
“It’s a really intimate space,” said comedian Erin Ingle, who hosts and produces “Hot Dam” at the Angry Beaver and has performed at Couth Buzzard’s open mike.
The place is casual and sometimes people just wander in, she added, not knowing there is a performance going on.
“There is intimacy and magic in that,” said Ingle.
No doubt, but why Greenwood?
Economics, for one. Dzielak noted that many “creatives” have been pushed north as Fremont and Ballard have become more pricey. Affordable rents are in turn drawing young families, said Dzielak, whose events draw everyone from small children to grandmothers.
The neighborhood has a median age of 38 and a preponderance of single-family homes.
Greenwood is attractive to nightlife entrepreneurs because there’s a lot less competition — and more plentiful parking — than in a neighborhood like Capitol Hill, with its overflow of bars, coffee shops, restaurants and nightclubs, all vying for the same crowd.
So far, Greenwood’s little hub seems to be cultivating a healthy diversity. Couth Buzzard is a consciously alternative space, and the Angry Beaver is a sports bar, but both bring in an audience for comedy.
Comic Haynes should feel right at home. He was born and raised in Seattle and tells jokes about warm beer and rain. Maybe he’ll find a way to work Greenwood into his material.