Pittsburgh Native Brings Laughter to the Masses in Southern Chautauqua County

Jamestown has made a name for itself as a destination for fans of comedy, thanks to the annual Lucille Ball Comedy Festival, along with the opening of the National Comedy Center in 2018.  

But it wasn’t comedy that first brought Paul Clemente to the Jamestown area.  

“I moved here in 2001 from Pittsburgh,’ he explains. “I was essentially running away from the area and moved to Jamestown with a friend.” 

Paul admits he wasn’t very impressed with the small city in Southern Chautauqua County, coming from an area that is much larger and diverse in population.  

“I lived in Pittsburgh during my younger years. There was no shortage of events and art to enjoy. Anything you were interested in – no matter how fringe – there was a representation of it somewhere. So when I first moved to Chautauqua County I hated it here. There was no variety, no art, and nothing but the same copy of the same bar.  I was very closed-minded with limited experience with what this area had to offer at the time,” he admits.  

Still, Paul made the most of his new home and eventually found his own community – with a group of local and regional residents who enjoy making other people laugh. With the help of some friends and support from local businesses, he formed Karate Sleepover, a stand-up comedy and improve Comedy Troupe that would perform special shows and host open-mics on a monthly basis. He would also emcee various events in the greater Jamestown community, while also performing across the region in both nearby Northwestern Pennsylvania as well as other parts of Western New York, including Buffalo. He’s also changed his tune about Chautauqua County and Jamestown and says the people here are his favorite part.  

“I love the fact I can walk down 4th Street in Jamestown and wave at (and hug) people I know and respect. Everyone here is so special and talented. This community embraced me and lets me be genuine and to me that is invaluable,” he says. 

When not making people laugh, Paul focuses on his “other job” – working as a business consultant, graphic artist, DJ, and also an entertainment producer for various businesses and organizations in the area. He also volunteers his time and hosts a weekly radio show on Jamestown’s local Low Power FM radio station, WRFA. 

Paul currently lives in nearby Lakewood, a village on Chautauqua Lake that is part of the greater Jamestown region, with his wife Amanda and three kids – Lexi, Vinnie and Vinny along with four cats – Tink, Poof, Violet and Daisy.  

When not working or spending time with his family, Paul enjoys spending time at one of the many destinations in downtown Jamestown.   
“I will seek out local events to support, enjoy or even volunteer for them to help them be successful,” he explains.

Paul also offers some friendly advice for others making their way to the area.  

“Chautauqua County is incredibly special in the way that there is beautiful art, people, and interests but you have a dig a little harder to find them.”

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