VAN WERT – For the third year in a row, the Van Wert County Humane Society will be offering up laughs as part of their annual “Raise the Woof” comedy night fundraiser which is set for March 29. Proceeds from the event will benefit the new shelter fund.

Comedian James Uloth, who is also the founder of Raise the Woof, travels the United States and Canada putting on the show to help shelters raise money. Uloth noted that he’s often found that residents think shelters are government funded when most of the time they are not; they rely on community donations.

“We work with rescues across Canada and the US; we’re probably getting close to raising $2 million in total,” said Uloth. “We’ve become a lot of rescues primary source of funding.”

Raise the Woof, currently in its eighth season, has been a success in helping shelters raise much-needed funding. Uloth, who loves making a difference in the lives of animals, said that as long as there is a need, he will help.

“People want us back year after year,” said Uloth. “I’m such a big animal lover, and the more you look into it and investigate it, you see the awful life that a lot of animals have, and the only people standing in the middle are these animal rescues.”

“It really helps that I’m working with people that make a difference in the lives of animals,” he continued.

Uloth has been doing stand-up comedy for 16 years. In addition to the Raise the Woof tour, he also does comedy tours to raise money for cancer, and he performs at corporate events. After raising money for cancer, many rescues were reaching out to him to see if he could help them. Uloth began to research the work that rescues and shelter do and felt called to help.

“Unfortunately, we need a lot more people on board,” said Uloth of animal rights. “We need a lot more people spaying and neutering their pets. People still don’t realize that you have to end a generation of unwanted pets just to help the ones that are still around.”

Raise the Woof will be held at the Wassenberg Art Center. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and there will be a 50/50 drawing. Tickets to the show are $30 ahead of time ($35 day of the show) and include appetizers provided by Black Angus on Main Street which start at 7 p.m. A cash bar will also open at 7 p.m. The comedy show begins at 8 p.m.

“When people come out and support these, and when they support the raffles and silent auctions that these rescues have, it really goes a long way,” said Uloth. “Even if you’re not an animal lover or you just want to see a great night of comedy, come out to the show. You’re going to have a great night of comedy, and hopefully, you’re comforted in knowing how much you’re helping.”