Recruiting established comics like "BoJack Horseman"'s Aparna Nancherla and "Big Big Theory"'s Brian Posehn helped the 10,000 Comedy Laughs Festival sell more than 4,000 tickets, a record for the 8-year old Minneapolis event.
But the real attraction to the three-night party has always been the chance to see promising new talent that, for whatever reason, has yet to make the Twin Cities a regular tour stop.
I had the chance to check out roughly a third of this year's 68 performers, arranging my schedule to hear as many new voices as possible. Here are three I'm hoping will be returning to Minnesota soon:
David Rodriguez's laid-back delivery turns out to be a ruse. This Colorado-based performer has some morbid thoughts, epsecially when it comes to campers who complain about bear attacks. After all, aren't tents just to-go bags for our four-legged friends?
Caitlin Peluffo takes no prisoners in an on-stage persona that suggests Chris Farley's Motivational Speaker after a bad date. The New York-based comic was so merciless on people in the front row, I would have gone up and given them a hug -- if I wasn't laughing so hard.
Add Usama Siddiquee to the list of new comics embracing their faith in Islam -- and mining great jokes out of it. The former Texan has some fine material that has nothing to do with being a Bengali-American, most notably during his take on the politically incorrect lyrics in house music. But he's at his best when he re-lives the nightmare of maneuvering airports with a first name that sounds a lot like one used by an infamous terrorist.