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Comedy show being held to fight commercial sexual exploitation

PHOENIX -- A comedy show will be held in Phoenix Saturday with the goal of both funding local efforts to fight commercial sexual exploitation and giving workers in the fight a night to laugh.

"People think comedy and this serious issue have no place together," said pastor Brad Pellish. "I have had caregiver after caregiver tell me this is the night of the year for me and I laughed silly for two hours. This will help give them permission to take a break, come apart, to honor people who deserve to be recognized. That's where Free to Laugh came from."

Pellish said Free to Laugh, the name of the comedy show, will feature three comedians this year using family-friendly jokes.

The show is not free, but Pellish said the money will go to several good places.

"Tickets are $25 and still available at the Comerica Theatre box office and the profits are going to Phoenix Police Vice Squad to buy new computers," he said. "We've used funds from previous events to pay for their wireless access so they can catch predators."

Other benefactors are Moma's House in the Valley, which serves adult survivors of commercial sexual exploitation, Catholic Charities Dignity House and Mending the Soul, which provides prevention and aftercare resources.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite food: Steak and shrimp, and any food on campouts.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Favorite news memory: The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. The 2007 Southern California Firestorm and being at Sky Harbor Airport when the first plane lifted off several days after 9-11. Seeing the American flag on the tail of the Salt Lake City-bound Delta airliner as it took off still gives me goosebumps.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges -- which was outstanding --, Lonesome Dove.

First job: Spinning records at KLER Radio Orofino, Idaho 1980.

First concert: KISS/Cheap Trick 1977 Spokane, WA Coliseum.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, The University of Montana Grizzlies and Texas Rangers.

Outside interests: Sports, camping, fishing, traveling.

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