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Drinking, dancing, and kissing are the traditional ways to ring in the New Year, but we’re always open to new ways to feel good about the New Year. We can think of worse ways to wait for the ball drop than the “first annual” celebration of Columbia comics at the Corley Mill House.

The Comedy Countdown in Columbia will showcase comedy acts from around the region. If you’re still craving some holiday cheer this late in the holiday season, you can get into the holiday spirit with food from Scott Hall Catering and an open bar.

Old habits die hard, and so around midnight the comedy show turns into a traditional night of champagne and dancing.

“The comedy show starts at 10 p.m. and goes until just before midnight – then we’ll pour the champagne and get ready to countdown to 2023,” said organizer Topher Riddle. “At midnight there will be music to dance to for the rest of the party.”

The party is a collaboration between Riddle, who has been a local comedian for over a decade, and his wife Allie, a wedding planner at Corley Mill House. They wanted to come up with an unusual, exciting new way to celebrate the New Year in Columbia.

“This is a unique idea that no one else has had, and since the famous hot New Year’s Eve party is no longer there, we thought we could offer people a new, fun way to enjoy the evening.”

The Comedy Countdown in Columbia is hosted by Florentine comedian Pate Gardener. Gardener frequently performs open mics in Columbia.

“I think he’s my wife’s favorite comedian too, after me, of course,” Riddle said.

Pete will feature a host of local comedians, including Lauren Ansley, Best of Columbia winner Jenn Snyder and comedy rap duo The Bustercups.

“Patrick Fowler and Phil Carter have been performing as The Bustercups for several years and have been regular performers at drag brunches at Scott Hall’s Bone In BBQ,” said Topher. “They have been nominated several times as best local hip hop artist.”