Last night at an intimate ceremony for Andy Ritchie’s family and friends, the folks at Cap City Comedy Club named the small lounge after the late comic. “Andy Ritchie’s Balthazar Lounge” references a favorite bit where Andy described encountering a “lost falcon” poster.
The tables at the club featured candy-filled cell phones atop bowls of candy with small signs that read, “Hell yeah, I want some candy,” another reference to a popular bit. The comic’s King Ding-a-Ling CDs and t-shirts featuring an original drawing of the comic from Kerry Awn were also distributed.
In attendance were Andy’s mom, brother and Ruby Collins, the comic’s fiancée, plus a multitude of comics including Mike MacRae, Martha Kelly, Chris Cubas, Bryan Gutmann and Trey Galyon. The event was organized by Cap City’s general manager and co-owner Margie Coyle and director of operations Chandy Popp Kurweil who worked with the comedian for many years.
Club owner Rich Miller opened the ceremony with a few words about his long relationship with the comic. He spoke of the early days when Andy was one of his assistants (other comics who had the job over the years included comedians John Evans and Isaac Witty) and he remembered Andy excitedly telling him of his weekend plans to watch the new Steven Segal movie over beers with friends. He said the comic had the enthusiasm of a kid at a candy store. He also fondly remembered the lunches that Andy and his mom would take and spoke about what a kind and good-natured person the comedian was.
Next, comedian and friend Chuck Watkins performed some of Andy’s jokes that never made it onto a CD to wild applause. Afterwards, he played a clip package featuring some of Andy’s bits, sketches, and short films culminating with his “Live at Gotham” performance. Finally, the club passed out champagne to the attendees before unveiling the hand-crafted sign announcing the new lounge name. Afterwards, guests hung around and remembered the late Funniest Person in Austin winner and some partook of The Balthazar Combo, a drink special named for the comic that features a shot of Jägermeister (the comic’s favorite) and a Fire Eagle IPA, chosen for it’s relation to the falcon.
Below here are some photos from the event from Instagram.