With live comedic entertainment taking a brief hiatus amid the global pandemic of COVID-19, our community’s stages and hearts are empty. While we may not be able to laugh with (or at) them for a while, many local comics have merchandise available through their websites and social media accounts. Those extra orders of T-shirts, album downloads, and stickers add up and are a beautiful way we can show support for our friends in entertainment. We’ve compiled some of our favorite merch from local and touring comedians who are familiar faces to Indianapolis stages. Get those stimulus checks and start your orders!
With a mission of “celebrating and uplifting marginalized comedians,” these tees are perfect for wearing on stage to “@ your local comedy club.” But, since live comedy is on hiatus, these comfortable MORE FEMALE HEADLINERS shirts make perfect, empowering lounge wear. I LOVE to wear this tee out and about and take any chance to strike up a conversation about the Baberoar’s mission. Plus, it’s adorable and versatile!
Lucas Waterfill Shirt
Based on Waterfill’s bit about the boundaries of his friendships, this sweetly designed shirt is available through his website. If you’re unfamilar with Lucas Waterfill’s comedy do yourself a favor and check it out!
With stickers and t-shirts that read DOME IS HOME, proceeds from these orders go to support Indy’s all ages music venue in Fountain Square. If you’ve been to shows at The Hoosier Dome, this shirt will make you nostalgic for live music and acts among friends. Shirts are available for local pickup only, according to The Hoosier Dome’s online store.
Brent Turhune Emotional Support Beer
Because we all need an Emotional Support Beer to get through the unknown. This design from Indy comic Brent Turhune is available in mugs, totes, shirts and phone cases. We recommend getting a hold of that sticker and putting it on your favorite local growler, until we can cheers in breweries again.
Mugs and Books
“DON’T TALK TO ME UNTIL I’VE HAD MY…Orgasm” reads this mug from touring comic and friend to Indianapolis stages, Reena Calm. Does quarantine have anyone else making their morning coffee around 2 pm? I couldn’t make a list of my favorite useful merch and not include this piece. Sadly the mugs are not able to be shipped at this time. You’ll have to wait to catch a live show next time she drops in, but for now you can entertain yourself through Reena’s words. Calm wrote a book, “Once a Pun A Time,” available through Amazon. It’s a lighthearted and entertaining read full of puns on each page, that’s perfect to add to that quarantine reading list!
If you want to support, but don’t have anywhere to show off these local designs, my favorite way to keep up with and support local comics is through buying, downloading and sharing comedy albums. For locally sourced laughs, check out streaming services for comedy albums by Indianapolis favorites. Some of my favorite albums from midwest comics at the moment include Dwight Simmons Sip and Pass, Whitney Chitwood Bakery Case, and Kristen Toomey MotherFucker. Whitney and Kristen are Chicago based comics but are no strangers to stages in Indianapolis. You can also keep up with your favorites as many comics have taken to live streams of shows on platforms like Facebook and Instagram Live and Zoom. Now is a great time to give your favorite acts a like or follow if you’re not already for content without leaving your house.
Put those stimulus checks to task and get ordering. While it won’t replace the income or energy of live shows, we can get creative in how we support our entertainment communities. Not only do the proceeds of these sales support our friends in their stage pursuits, these pieces of merchandise can be styled and worn when daily life resumes. Their unique designs will look great as streetwear and give you a chance to brag on your favorite performers. Your local comedians thank you, and in exchange for your thoughtful purchase, will try not to heckle you next show.