Serving up laughter: Local resident headlines Jan. 1 comedy show at Factory 12

When nationally touring comic and Columbus resident Jeff Bodart began making wands recently, he brought one out on stage in Lexington, Kentucky, after a fellow funnyman encouraged him to show one to an audience — a group that thought he was kidding about his sideline art.

The veteran stand-up performer ideally might love to wave one of his creations and cast a side-splitting spell on a hometown group at 3 p.m. Jan. 1 at the small-venue break room at Factory 12 Event Loft, 1325 Jackson St. in downtown Columbus. And that’s only because he has acknowledged that a crowd of those who know him personally can seem more intimidating.

“I probably make it tougher than it actually is, because it’s probably just all in my head,” Bodart said.

He will headline a buffet-and-bar show, also featuring Columbus residents Sean Burton and Robert Hay-Smith, organized by Catering by Karr. Owner Jeff Karr hopes to make intimate-setting comedy events a recurring offering every few months. Bodart was asked if he gets free food at such an event.

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“If not,” he said, “I’ll be stealing stuff.”

In the past, Bodart has joked about his weight, his not-so successful forays into exercise — his father came and picked him up a few years ago in the middle of the Mill Race Half Marathon — and other such failings. He may work into this set a few observations about his New Year’s resolutions.

He is certain that attendees will notice that he is trying to grow a beard — one that he says is growing thicker on one side than the other.

“Right now, it’s in that weird stage where it looks like I’m just hitting puberty,” Bodart said.

Except that he said his advancing age of 41 is showing in the form of gray hair.

The writer and frequent guest on the nationally syndicated “Bob and Tom Show” originating in Indianapolis is planning his third album sometime in the future, and is working on new material. While thinking of past shows not long ago, he mentioned noticing that hecklers seem to be a regular part of quite a number of his shows — but only for a few short minutes.

“I tend to fight back with both barrels blazing these days,” Bodart said with a chuckle, acknowledging that the audience usually is on his side. “And it gets good laughs.”

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What: Buffet dinner and comedy presented by Catering By Karr. Columbus resident Sean Burton, who recently began open-mic appearances, will emcee for Robert Hay-Smith and Jeff Bodart, who have appeared together at various comedy fundraisers in recent years.

When: 3 to 6 p.m. Jan 1.

Where: The break room of Factory 12 Event Loft, 1325 Jackson St. in downtown Columbus.

Tickets: $60.