Santa Barbara Offers Alternatives to Partying


Samantha McMullen
Arts and Review Editor

By choosing this campus you have already heard various facts about UCSB, such as that it is literally on the beach and that everyone rides bikes. You also might have heard that our party reputation is enough to make your parents call you every Friday night, ask what you are up to, and tell you to be safe. If for whatever reason you don’t want to party in Isla Vista all weekend, have no fear.  Partying may seem like the only name of the game, but there are lots of other exciting things to do on the weekend that normally don’t involve alcohol or the chance of waking up in someone else’s bed or even worse, in jail.

Instead of getting your drink on, try putting your bowling shoes on.  Zodo’s Bowling Alley in Goleta offers some sweet discounts on Wednesday nights, and on Thursday nights they show classic films like Zoolander and Tropic Thunder from 9:30-1:30 while you bowl. They also play music, usually a live DJ from a local radio station, and have an awesome light show. Why are you telling me about Thursday nights, you may ask? Well, in IV the weekend party spree starts on Thursday night, or Wednesday nights for the die-hards. But partying on school nights isn’t exactly the best way to make sure you make it to morning classes, so giving something other than a shot a try will help you get off to a great start at school.

And you can always go to the movies.  Too boring?  Well, if you brought a car to campus, then the West Wind Drive-In theater in Goleta is the perfect evening site to view two films for an outstanding price. And if you didn’t bring a car, then now is your opportunity to make a friend who DID.  The double-features start at 8:40 and only cost about seven dollars per person, with prices decreasing to about five dollars on Tuesday nights. Fill your car with friends, pillows, blankets and lots of snacks and enjoy the double feature just like it was a huge screen in your living room.

Want to stay in this weekend but still want to meet new people and hang out with your friends?  Living in the dorms gives you some great options you should put to use. One thing to do is reserve the Rec Room of your dorm and makes posters for a movie or game night. Plan a Star Wars marathon and ask people to come dressed up, on Saturday morning make pancakes in the kitchen, or invite people to come watch old cartoons or the Simpsons with you. Remember, all those kids are in the same new situation that you are in and normally most of them are eager to start new friendships and try new things. So take advantage of that and have some fun!

But what else is there to do?  Check out the Arts and Lectures Website to see what events are happening around campus. Tons of guest speakers visit our campus. Last year Bill Nigh the Science Guy and Karl Rove came to speak, drawing large crowds and the community’s attention. Film marathons and documentaries also play often. During the school year there is always something entertaining and normally educating going on, from musicals to comedic performances. So don’t be afraid to explore.

Friday night kicks off the weekend with Improvability. For just three bucks you get to see some of UCSB’s finest comedians, and they really are entertaining. The fun spills over into Saturday night with Laughology in Embarcadero Hall around 8, and though it is a student run comedy club that starts out with local acts, it ends with a bang by showcasing famous comedians from Comedy Central and Hollywood clubs. It’s free, and laughter is a great ab work out, so show up early to get good seats and enjoy the show.

The best thing about UCSB’s campus is its diversity. Explore the billboards around campus that tell about the various campus clubs and events. Walk around town with your friends and explore this new world. Every day you have the possibility of finding free food and free events around IV So save some cash and keep your eyes peeled. And, oh yeah, be sure to go to the beach, because it’s pretty much in our backyard.

Photos By: Eddie Ferry and Rosana Liang