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GOINGS ON SANTA BARBARA : Guffaws in Goleta : Two comics from Seattle bring laughs to the coast in a new club with a name you better not pronounce.


Newlywed comics Vicki Howie and Erik Allan were residing in Seattle when they entered a drawing and won a trip to four major comedy cities. Goleta was not one of them.

Los Angeles, however, was on the itinerary. While the couple were in California, they decided to take a trip up the coast. "We decided to drive up because we knew we wanted to live somewhere close to Los Angeles, but not in it," Howie said.

After checking out Santa Barbara County, they decided to move there. And after discovering what they considered a dire need for a serious comedy club in Goleta, they decided to open one.

P. Yopansz Comedy Funhouse (which, if pronounced correctly and slurred a bit, barely qualifies for printing in a family newspaper) opens tonight in a room on the north side of Alex's Cantina in Goleta.

Tonight's lead performer will be Tom McGillen, who does a mean rendition of a poorly dubbed "Godzilla" movie. He will be joined by Chris Raine and Greg Berhendt. Each week, the club will bring in a different trio of comedians. Look for Thousand Oaks resident Bruce Baum to be the lead act April 9 to 12.

Howie said she is trying to book comedians who will attract people who aren't stuffy. "The comedians may offend people who are stuffy, but they won't be a Sam Kinnison," she said. "We're picking people who have a wide appeal."

There will be shows at 8 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays, and 8 and 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Admission will be $8. There also will be a Wednesday night amateur/professional show, with admission $3. Alex's Cantina and P. Yopansz are at 5918 Hollister Ave. Call 683-6630 for reservations.

Bluegrass musician Ralph Stanley will be joined by the Clinch Mountain Boys in a performance tonight at the Victoria Street Theater in Santa Barbara. The program will also include performances by the Gap Tooth Mountain Ramblers and the Masked Marvel. Show time is 8 p.m. Admission is $14 and $12. Call 963-0761 or 963-7868. The theater is at 33 W. Victoria St.

Locals have been doing plenty of sky watching these past couple of weeks, what with the unusual weather. So the sky-gazing programs being put on by both the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History and the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden should fit right in.

There will be two separate programs Friday night.

At the botanic garden, astronomer Richard Reed will present a slide show of nebulae, pulsars, quasars and black holes. Then the telescopes will be trained on the Winter Hexagon, Pegasus and Orion, with accompanying celestial mythology. The program will begin at 7 p.m. General admission is $11 per person or $19 per family. The garden is at 1212 Mission Canyon Road. Call 563-2521.

The Museum of Natural History will put its large Shipman telescope to use for viewing the Orion Nebula. Other telescopes will be focused on the Pleiades, the Betelgeuse star and other clusters. For planet-lovers, Jupiter will also make an appearance. General admission is $2 for adults and children, with a $5 maximum per family. The program will begin at 7 p.m. and will be repeated Saturday at the same time. The museum is at 2559 Puesta del Sol Road. Call 682-3224.

Each year, the Marlboro Music School and Festival in Vermont holds a summer program for gifted musicians from around the world. And each year, the best of these musicians go on tour.

UC Santa Barbara will present a group of Marlboro's string musicians in a concert Friday at Campbell Hall. The four violinists, two violists and two cellists will perform Mendelsshon's "Octet in E flat Major, Op. 20," Shostakovich's "Two Pieces for String Octet, Op. 11" and Mozart's "String Quintet in C Major, K. 515." Show time is 8 p.m. General admission is $16, $14 and $10. Call 893-3535.

Wondering what to do on Leap Day on Saturday? Why not check out the Flying Leap Storytelling Festival in Solvang.

The 11 a.m. to midnight event will feature the multicultural yarn-weaving of Johnny Moses, Robin Williamson, Olga Loya and Santa Barbara County residents Michael Katz and Nadja Forest.

It will kick off at 11 a.m. with a free presentation by Loya at the Royal Scandinavian Inn ballroom. From 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., there will be a free story swap involving all the storytellers at Solvang Park. Then it's back to the inn for a 2:30 p.m. show by Moses, a 4 p.m. show by Williamson and a 7:30 p.m. presentation by the participants. There will be another free story swap, this one for adults, from 11 p.m. to midnight at the inn.

Festival passes are $20 adults and $12 children. Individual tickets for the 11 a.m., 2:30 and 4 p.m. shows are $6 adults, $4 children. Admission to the 7:30 p.m. show is $10 adults, $6 children. The inn is at 400 Alisal Road. Solvang Park is at Mission Drive (California 246) and 1st Street.

For reservations and information, call 688-9533.

Seven faculty members of UC Santa Barbara's department of music will practice what they preach in a chamber music concert Sunday.

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