**UPDATE** As of late morning, Wednesday, this event had sold out.
WENATCHEE — Mission Ridge promises the echo of laughter from Bomber Cliff to Bowl Four at its Thursday dinner followed by a comedy special, "Jokes on the Slopes," with stand-up by Travis Nelson and Chase Mayers, for $40.
For access up and down to Midway Lodge, 7500 Mission Ridge Rd., Wenatchee, guests can rent or use their own snowshoes. The distance is approximately three quarters of a mile, with an elevation gain of roughly 550 feet.
Or ride the lift and then ski or board your way down after the show. Lift ticket prices from 4-9 p.m. are $37.
Dinner at 6 p.m. is baked ziti, Caesar salad and garlic bread. Alcohol is available for purchase, so audience members must be 21 or older.
The two comedians shared more about themselves on separate phone calls last week.
'Stage time isn't a problem'
Travis Nelson, 33, based in Seattle, started doing stand-up comedy in Nov. 2010 while attending Western Washington University in Bellingham. It began with friends at open mics and in improv groups. Then in a competition he got third place and said, "After that I never stopped."
“I’ve always written jokes,” said Nelson, “It’s what I loved growing up, just getting on stage and talking, so you can do it anywhere.”
For five years he’s been with a four-person comedy group called "The Blunt People" with Vanessa Dawn, Erin Ingle and Chase Mayers.
Most recently, Nelson performed on a cruise ship for a week around New Year’s Eve, then at a spot called Maynard’s in Silverdale. “A special show” at the Tacoma Glass Museum was "really cool, it’s kind of fancy, high-class setting," he said.
Nelson said his “regular stand-up is stories from my life, and just kind of like trying to be creative and silly. I have a few jokes – will double-check how dirty they’ll let me get. I’m working on ones pulling from science and history into jokes.”
About the audiences, Nelson said “After the pandemic, people seemed to have trouble adjusting to social norms outside of houses. There have been messy drunk people here and there. For the most part, people are happy and polite and ready to go out to shows again.”
During the first six months of the pandemic, he got a day job at a cannabis extraction lab, and then began booking shows again.
“Stage time isn’t a problem,” Nelson said, “now it’s about getting audiences.”
As for the comedians he likes the most, Nelson said he appreciates Michelle Wolf, Sam Morril, Maria Bamford, Nate Bargatze, and Jerrod Carmichael.
'I'm more of a storyteller'
Chase Mayers, 33, based in Tacoma, is originally from Louisiana, “so the snow and cold terrifies me,” he said. He started comedy in 2011 in Baton Rouge and performed there for five years.
His current podcast “Buckets of Duckets” is hosted with Josh Watts, also a comedian from Louisiana, via Zoom to loosely talk about culture and comedy.
Mayers said a recent New Year’s Eve show in Little Rock, Arkansas at a venue called "The Looney Bin Comedy Club" was as "as wild as you would think at a southern show, a bunch of drunks.”
Mayers said, “I wouldn’t say my comedy is edgy in any way. I’m more of a storyteller. My crowds tend to be respectful and calm. I don’t provoke people, heckling or stuff.”
“I definitely kind of look at my life for inspiration,” said Mayers, “telling inspirational stories where I’m the butt of the joke. People can laugh more if I make fun of myself rather than making fun of other groups.”
“For one, I definitely been talking a lot about how the show of moving from Louisiana to Washington, and how you guys are so okay with legal weed, have billboards and punch cards and discounts, you get a receipt for legal drugs,” said Mayers, “Comparing that to where I’m from, where you buy weed, you go to jail, and here you get a receipt.”
In between comedy tours and shows, Mayers takes warehouse jobs through a temp agency.
Mayers said “The struggle of stand-up comedy is that it’s not instant at all, it’s a long road … You don’t start with an hour of material, it’s three minutes.”
Mayers likes comedians from the stand-up era during the '80s and early '90s, such as Richard Pryor, George Carlin, and Greg Giraldo, and Chris Rock.