The Laugh Tract — who's bringing the funny

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If you want to see comedy this weekend, you could go a few different ways. You could go with the traditional mic-and-stand comedians, you could go with puppets, you could go with crazy voices or you could go with the witty story-telling of a comedy vet with a half-century in the business under her belt.

Whichever way you go, there are plenty of laughs to be had. Here are the best options:

Theaters

Lily Tomlin at Tampa Theatre. Nearly 50 years after her first television appearance, Tomlin is still on tour and visits Tampa Theatre on Thursday. Her stage show includes plenty of trademark characters, stories and the wit that's made her a comedy favorite with audiences for most of her life.  Showtime is Thursday at 8 p.m. 711 N. Franklin St., Tampa. Info: tampatheatre.org or 813-274-8981.


Comedy Clubs

Brad Williams
  • Brad Williams

Brad Williams at Tampa Improv. Yes, Williams is a dwarf. And if you can't find the humor in that, don't bother coming to one of his shows. Williams has a high-energy, no-holds-barred approach to comedy, with his disability being just one topic in his witty arsenal. Showtimes are Thursday at 8 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m. 1600 E. Eighth Ave., Tampa. Info: improvtampa.com or 813-864-4000.

John DiCrosta at Snappers Grill & Comedy Club. If you're looking for a calm, mild-mannered comedian this weekend, DiCrosta is not your man. The energetic performer uses different voices and plenty of enthusiasm to put exclamation points on his punchlines.Showtimes are Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. 36657 U.S. 19 N., Palm Harbor. Info: snappersgrill.com or 727-938-2027.


Chris Barnes at Coconuts (St. Pete Beach). Barnes is an expressive comedian with nearly 35 years of stage experience. He uses that veteran presence to showcase his view of the world in a lively, animated way. Showtimes are through Saturday at 9:30 p.m. 6200 Gulf Blvd. at the Beachcomber Resort, St. Pete Beach. Info: coconutscomedyclubs.com or 727-360-5653.

Michael Palascak
  • Michael Palascak

Mark James at Jack's Joint. James has become something of a regular in the Tampa Bay area, with frequent stops at comedy clubs. His style of ventriloquism and audience interaction with his team of puppets resonates well with area crowds. Showtime is Saturday at 8:30 p.m. 2950 Gulf To Bay Blvd., Clearwater. Info: tampabaycomedy.com or 727-741-8014.

Michael Palascak at Side Splitters. Palascak looks like he could be a classic underachiever or a recent college grad who's still at home trying to figure out what they want to be when they grow up. And while a lot of his material reinforces that image, it's really a vehicle for his sharp sense of comic timing and clever observations about everyday life. Showtimes are Thursday at 8:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m., Saturday at 6 p.m., 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m. 12938 N. Dale Mabry, Tampa. Info: sidesplitterscomedy.com or 813-960-1197.

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