The Zaring Group Announces First Ever Cabo Comedy Festival Oct 2-6, 2013

The Mexico Report is very excited to share this great news with you!

Cabo Comedy FestivalApril 9, 2013 Los Angeles, CA – There will be plenty of fun and laughter in Los Cabos, B.C.S., October 2-6, 2013 when the Cabo Comedy Festival, with the slogan “Where the Land Ends And The Laughs Begin,” launches at the popular Mexican beach destination.

Supported by the Mexico Tourism Board, the Los Cabos Tourism Board and the state of Baja California Sur, the 5-day event will be produced by LA-based the Zaring Group, and feature performances by some of the entertainment industry’s top stand-up headliners along with a best new comic competition comprised of opening act-level performers. The festival will also include panel discussions on the business of comedy with writers, producers & cast members from some of television’s top comedies, celebrity golf and poker tournaments, both of which will benefit DIF, a local children’s charity, and after- parties at some of Cabo’s most popular nightclubs. The festival will culminate with an awards presentation and celebrity roast.

Heather McDonald, Niecy Nash, Jon Lovitz, Jeff Dye, Dana Eagle, Rick Najera, Paula Poundstone, Carol Leifer, Cathy Ladman, John Mendoza, Paul Provenza, Sherri Shepherd, Greg Hahn, Craig Shoemaker and Mark Eddie are just some of the performers expected to head south of the border for the festival. And Robert Townsend will make his return to stand-up in Cabo!

“Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” performer and sketch writer Seth Herzog will host a special performance of his critically acclaimed weekly NYC-based alt-comedy show “Sweet,” which counts among its alumni a ‘Who’s Who’ of comedy royalty, including Zach Galifianakis, Paul Rudd, Whitney Cummings, Justin Long and Janeane Garofalo. Other special sets include the Las Vegas based ‘Icons of Comedy,’ whose revolving list of performers has included Andrew “Dice” Clay, Bobby Slayton, Hal Sparks, Gilbert Gottfriend and Elayne Boosler, and a slate of comics from the popular Manhattan comedy club The Stand, including Yannis Pappas, Sherrod Small (vh1 “Best Week Ever”), Joe DeRosa, Nikki Glaser, Big Jay Oakerson and Ari Shaffir.

Top comedy podcasters will record shows in front of their fans, who will be encouraged to travel to Cabo for the events, where festival guests will experience first class hospitality at several beachfront resorts including Casa Dorada Resort & Spa, Cabo Villas Resort, Wyndam Tesoro, Villa del Arco, Villa del Palmar, Cabo Lifestyle Villas, and Bahia Hotel, among others. Shows will take place in various venues throughout Cabo San Lucas including the Hard Rock Café, Cabo Wabo Cantina, Desperadoes, Baja Cantina Playa, and the Cultural Pavilion of the Republic.

Festival creator and producer John Zaring said “Cabo is already LA’s playground, and with its awesome weather, beautiful beaches and abundant nightlife, it is the perfect place for a festival that’s been built to both fill a void in the industry and be a premiere destination for comedy fans. But the best news is that through this festival, we’ll be able to help kids in Baja California Sur by raising funds for DIF, a local charity that supports children’s services.”

At the heart of the festival is a competition among ‘opening act’ level comedians, who will compete for an appearance on one of late night’s most popular talk shows as winner of the ‘Jack Rollins Breakthrough Talent Award,’ named for the legendary NYC-based talent manager and producer. Rollins, who discovered Woody Allen and has served as producer, with longtime partner Charles Joffe, on every film ever made by Allen, was also the executive producer for then-client David Letterman of “Late Night with David Letterman” during its 13-year run on NBC. In addition to Letterman and Allen, some of the other top comedy talent whose careers the 98-year old Rollins helped foster include such iconic performers as Lenny Bruce, Robert Klein, Mike Nichols & Elaine May, Rick Reynolds, Tom Poston, Dick Cavett, Martin Short, Martin Mull, Billy Crystal and Robin Williams. The winner will be selected by a panel of industry experts which includes established comedians, talent reps and club bookers.Daytime panel discussions will be led by industry executives, comedians, comedy writers and producers of some of film and television’s top comedies. Already confirmed is a panel led by “Curb Your Enthusiasm” executive producer Tim Gibbons, which will feature producers, writers and cast members from the hit HBO show. Comedian and “Daily Show” co-creator Lizz Winstead is organizing a panel on political satire’s role in shaping public opinion on the issues of the day, and longtime stand-up and TV comedy writer Billy Riback (“Home Improvement,” “The Suite Life of Zack & Cody”) will lead a panel on the art of sitcom punch up. Additional panels will cover such topics as ‘Comedy on Twitter,’ ‘Writing That Comedy Book,’ ‘How to Follow a Strong (of filthy!) Comic,’ ‘Dealing with Hecklers and the Check-drop’ and ‘How to Deal with Club Owners’.

The highlight of the weekend will be the bestowing of the ‘Giant of Comedy’ award to Improv founder and industry legend Budd Friedman, who is currently celebrating 50 years of his iconic comedy club brand. Mr. Friedman will be feted for his lifetime of achievement in the comedy business, and for having helped to launch the careers of many of comedy’s biggest names, including many of the performers participating in the festival.

Jorge Gamboa Patron, the director of Mexico Tourism Board based at the Mexico Consulate in Los Angeles, said, “For many years now, the Zaring Group has been a great partner in promoting tourism to Mexico. They produce exciting star-driven events, which is why we are happy to put our support behind the Cabo Comedy Festival, which we believe will be an exciting new international event for comedians, their fans and local residents of Los Cabos.”

Baja California Sur Secretary of Tourism Ruben Reachi added, “The Cabo Comedy Festival will shine the spotlight of the entertainment industry on Los Cabos and Baja California Sur, and bring fans from around the world here for the shows. On behalf of the Governor, we are excited to lend our support!”

Eduardo Segura, Executive Director of the Los Cabos Tourism Board, said, “The Los Cabos Tourism Board is thrilled to welcome the Cabo Comedy Festival to our destination. This event highlights the relationship that Cabo has with California and Los Angeles specifically, which has always been and continues to be an important market for us. It also further solidifies our position as the entertainment industry’s vacation destination of choice, an accolade we are proud and honored to uphold.”

Show tickets, festival badges and hotel packages will go on sale on June 1 at The festival’s Twitter account is @CaboComedyFest.

Zaring Group founder John Zaring, the festival’s creator, has three decades of experience in celebrity event development and management. In addition to producing charity events for stars Marg Helgenberger, Dennis Quaid, Meat Loaf, Samuel L. Jackson, among others, he’s also produced multiple comedy shows. Through the Zaring Group’s signature destination resort promotion program, the firm has been promoting Mexico via special events and celebrity appearances since 2007. In Cabo San Lucas, the firm has organized the annual Barefoot Formal, a New Year’s Eve show at Casa Dorada Resort & Spa featuring dancers from “Dancing with the Stars” and “So You Think You Can Dance” along with finalists from “American Idol,” as well as the Cabo Celebrity Golf Classic, and Puerto Los Cabos World Cup.

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Susie Albin-Najera
Susie Albin-Najera is the creator and editor of The Mexico Report, an award winning travel blog showcasing news, deals and resources for the modern traveler. Najera is a writer, author, travel blogger, marketing and public relations specialist and producer. Najera serves on the host committee for Maestro Cares, founded by singer Marc Anthony and producer Henry Cardenas; and on the advisory board for Corazon de Vida, providing aid to children in Mexico. She is also the creator of 'The Real Heroes of Mexico' showcasing community heroes in Mexico and producer of Latino Thought Makers. Najera has been recognized by the Mexican Consulate and Mexico Tourism Board for fostering positive relations between countries and her dedication to showcasing Mexico as a premiere destination. She can be reached at

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