On Stage

A Fluffy Affair

Comedy and country in Lynden


What: Gabriel Iglesias

When: 7 pm Sat., Aug. 19

Where: 1775 Front St., Lynden

Cost: $30-$50

Info: http://www.nwwafair.com

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

“The fair is getting Fluffy!” read a recent missive on the Northwest Washington Fair’s website.

Having seen standup comedian Gabriel Iglesias at a gut-busting Valentine’s Day appearance at Bellingham’s Mount Baker Theatre four years ago, I guessed correctly they were talking about the canny comedian known for poking fun at his weight—“I’m not fat, I’m fluffy,” he’s announced to audiences on more than one occasion—and for a personable-yet-insightful stage presence that helps him fill seats at various venues throughout the land.

That wasn’t always the case. Twenty years ago, Iglesias had a steady line of work at a cell phone company in Los Angeles and was doing comedy on the side. But against the advice of his family, he eventually chose standup as his career and quit his day job.

The rewards weren’t without risk, and before finding success onstage he lost his car and was evicted from his house. But he stuck with the ups and downs of the entertainment business, and 20 years later makes his living bringing laughter to the masses—whether it’s via sold-out standup gigs, voiceover work, Comedy Central specials, sketch comedy or movie roles (yep, that was him in Magic Mike XXL).

One thing those in attendance may take note of at the Sat., Aug. 19 Grandstand show at Lynden’s Northwest Washington Fairgrounds is that Iglesias, 41, isn’t quite as “fluffy” as he was the last time he made an appearance in Whatcom County. After being diagnosed with Type II Diabetes, he has since shed more than 100 pounds and adopted a regular workout routine.

But just because there’s less of him to love doesn’t mean he’s lost his comedic edge, as those who attend the stop on Iglesias’ “FluffyMania World Tour: 20 Years of Comedy” will find out.

If you can’t wait until closing night of the fair to get your fill of funnel cake, carnival rides, games, FFA displays, rodeos, demo derbies, local entertainment and all of the associated wonders that the Northwest Washington Fair brings to the area every summer, also consider purchasing tickets to the other Grandstand acts—the hard-rocking ensemble known as Knight Ranger (Aug. 17), and country music star and American Idol winner Scotty McCreery (Aug. 18).

Whether you choose a comedic powerhouse, rowdy rockers, a country crooner or all three of the Grandstand choices, know that the large outdoor venue at the fairgrounds houses one of the best things about the Northwest Washington Fair—a chance to see big-name acts on a small-town stage.

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