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Actor and comedian Mike Epps is probably best known for his lighter side, having co-starred in movies like “Next Friday,” “Friday After Next,” “The Honeymooners” and “The Fighting Temptations,” where he appeared alongside Cuba Gooding Jr. and Beyonce.
But Saturday afternoon, people will have an opportunity to see Epps’ more serious side when he speaks with young people from 1 to 3 p.m. in the Frank E. Merriweather Jr. Library, 1324 Jefferson Ave.
During the free event, Epps will talk about the violence that plagues inner-city communities. His motivational speech will be directed to local youth.
Talking seriously to young people is nothing new for Epps. He and his actress wife formed the Michael and Mechelle Epps Foundation to expand opportunities in the arts, culture and sports to help at-risk youth reach their potential.
In his appearance at the Merriweather Library, the Indianapolis native will speak about his life, nonviolence, bullying, staying in school and the importance of voting.
The session is sponsored by Stop the Violence Coalition, Y.O.U.T.H. Organization, and Men Against Destruction Defending Against Drugs & Social Disorder (MAD DADS). Clarence C. Bryant, a member of Epps’ management team, and Buffalo comedian Carl C. White also will make presentations to youth at the library event.
The Merriweather appearance precedes Epps’ performance of his stand-up comedy routine, the “I’m Still Standing Tour,” at 7 p.m. Saturday in Shea’s Performing Arts Center.
Epps also is famous for his roles in the movies “Sparkle” and “The Hangover,” as well as co-starring roles in other movies, including “All About the Benjamins,” “Resident Evil: Extinction” and “Soul Men,” which marked actor and comedian Bernie Mac’s last film performance before his death in August 2008.

email: dswilliams@buffnews.com