Saying it’s the first time such an action has been taken in its 48-year history, the famed Comedy Store on the Sunset Strip announced Friday it is suspending all performances through the end of March due to coronavirus issues.

“During the best of times and the worst of times, the Comedy Store’s mission has always been to provide a forum for comedians to thrive and for audiences to laugh,” according to a message sent to patrons by the club, 8433 W. Sunset Blvd. “But we are currently at an unusual and challenging moment, and we believe strongly in doing what is best for the health and safety of our staff, performers and patrons.”

Club officials said the venue was already taking precautions to protect patrons, and while the venue is closed, the club will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.

“This is the first time in our almost 48-year history we have done anything like this — and we do not take this decision lightly,” according to the club. “When it comes to helping to protect the health and safety of our community and beyond, however, this choice is simple. By suspending our comedy, we can all help to avert a tragedy.”

As of Friday afternoon, the Laugh Factory comedy club at 8001 Sunset Blvd. remained open, with performances still scheduled through the weekend. According to the Laugh Factory website, efforts are being made to protect against coronavirus, most notably by limiting audience sizes to 200, “which will allow for ample space between guests.”

The Laugh Factory is also eliminating some shows to “give our staff more off-time between work and also to allow for staff members who are unable or prefer not to report to work.”

“We fully believe that for most things laughter is the best medicine, but at the same time, we request that all of our patrons follow the same vigilance and take seriously the responsibility to not come to our locations if you’re even suspicious of being ill.”

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