Comedy coach Jim Richardson will bring his Comedy Marathon Contest back to Sonoma County for the first time in more than three decades Sunday, May 24, with as many as 30 of his stand-up comedy students expected to compete.

The comics are from Richardson’s six-week stand-up comedy workshop course, and will perform five-minute monologues for a panel of six judges, all professional writers or performers.

The event will start at 8 p.m. at the Sebastopol Community Cultural Center, 390 Morris St., where Richardson teaches comedy classes. Contestants ranging in age from 22 to 72 will compete for a top prize of $150. In addition to the monologue competition, there will an exhibition of improvisational comedy.

One of the guests at the event will be Danny Flores of Santa Rosa, winner of Richardson’s first Comedy Marathon Contest in September 1981, just a week after another Richardson pupil, ventriloquist Ronn Lucas, won the San Francisco Stand-Up Competition. Richardson’s original Comedy Marathon Contest continued until 1983 at Sonoma State University.

Tickets costs $10, and are available in advance online at, by phone at 415-877-4424, or at the door.

You can reach staff writer Dan Taylor at 521-5243 or