Mar 212012
 
Authors: Jason Pohl

What happens when you bring someone to CSU who has starred on Animal Planet, worked with Steve Irwin, been a stand-up comedian and taken life-changing advice from Rolling Stones legendary guitarist Keith Richards?

Well, nobody really knows, but students are about to find out.

At 7 p.m. Thursday in the LSC Main Ballroom, nationally recognized comedian, veterinarian and CSU alumnus Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald will speak of his wildest experiences as a Denver-based vet while bringing in the little elements of daily life people often overlook during an hour-long comedy routine.

“I think that nobody laughs enough,” Fitzgerald said. “I think people should come out because they owe it to themselves.”

The event is free and open to the public. No RSVP is required.

While Fitzgerald said being an animal comedian wasn’t always his dream, humor was always one of his strengths. As a kid, he said he wrote jokes for other comics and submitted some to famous acts including Johnny Carson.

But education was important too.

For years, he put himself through school as a bouncer for bands like the Rolling Stones and The Who before finding his comedy and animal roots after a conversation with Stones guitarist Keith Richards, who pulled him aside one day and said he needed to plan for the future since the band likely wouldn’t be around forever.

Well, while the Stones continue to play sold-out stadiums, Fitzgerald found a way to blend the best of both worlds in his comedy and profession.

“When Keith Richards says you better get a grip, well, you better get a grip,” he said.

Fitzgerald graduated from CSU’s veterinary medicine program in 1983 and has been practicing for nearly three decades at Alameda East Veterinarian Hospital in Denver, blending stand-up comedy and being featured on national programs along the way.

He starred on the Animal Planet show Emergency Vets for 10 years, showing what life was like in an emergency animal hospital while working with colleagues including the late “Crocodile Hunter”
Steve Irwin.

Thursday’s event is being brought to campus by ASAP in partnership with the zoology and pre-vet club.

“We wanted to bring something different to campus,” said Ally Kozeny, a senior equine science major and comedy coordinator for ASAP. She explained that, as an agriculture-based school, this will reach out to a broad audience in a way that “has never been done before.”

Kozeny said the cost to bring him to CSU was around $2,300, and the logistics worked out well with him being just down the highway and a university alumnus.

“It’s nice to bring that lighter side to a very serious and difficult program to go through,” she said. “This is a great, great program and overall a great person to bring to CSU.”

“He really fit the bill,” Kozeny added.

Fitzgerald was reminiscent of his time at CSU and said he hopes people are able to make it and take a break from their often hectic lives for a night of real world humor where no topic is off limits.

“I think it’s time to get up off the couch and get out, spend an hour, restore the burners and get a little energy,” Fitzgerald said. “We’re going to have some fun.”

Senior Reporter Jason Pohl can be reached at news@collegian.com.

Who: Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald
What: Nationally recognized animal comedian coming to CSU
When: 7 p.m. Thursday
Where: LSC Main Ballroom
Cost: FREE. No RSVP required.
For more information, visit www.drkevinfitzgerald.com

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