9 Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Week

Your last-minute Memorial Day plans? They're right here.
Your last-minute Memorial Day plans? They're right here.
greenmelinda/Flickr Creative Commons

New Times picks the best things to do in metro Phoenix from Monday, May 30, through Thursday, June 2. For more events, see our curated online calendar

Memorial Day Divas Show
Consider it a throwback canteen concert à la The Andrews Sisters — if the World War II-era swing singers had Adam’s apples.

Rather, it’s the return of Kobalt Bar’s annual daytime Memorial Day Divas Show, featuring a handful of the Valley’s drag queens for an afternoon of lip syncing, stand-up, and a whole lot of ball bustin’. Hosted by T.C. Taylor, former Miss Gay Arizona America, the event’s special guests include Payda Parc, Phaedra Fernando, and the reigning Miss Kobalt, Diane Daniels. Thirsty patrons can enjoy Ketel One cocktails and happy hour all day.

The show starts at 1 p.m. on Monday, May 30, at 3110 North Central Avenue. There’s no cover charge for the 21-and-over event. For more Diva details and future shows, click www.kobaltbarphoenix.com or call 602-264-5307. Janessa Hilliard

"Personal Journeys"
The view is looking especially good these days inside one particular room at the Heard Museum, 2301 North Central Avenue. It’s a two-story gallery space housing an exhibition called “Personal Journeys: American Indian Landscapes.”

Forget those dull, generic landscapes you’ve seen hanging in doctors’ offices and your grandma’s dining room. Because this isn’t that.

“Personal Journeys” features works exploring the unique relationship American Indians have with the land. Its many artists use media — including photography, painting, basketry, and pottery — to explore identity, origin stories, cultural teachings, historical events, personal experiences, and spiritual insights.

Heard Museum hours on Monday, May 30, are 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Museum admission is $18 for adults. “Personal Journeys” continues through September 28. Visit www.heard.org. Lynn Trimble

The Mercury rise against the Sun.EXPAND
The Mercury rise against the Sun.
Barry Gossage/Phoenix Mercury

Phoenix Mercury vs. Connecticut Sun
At this point, the Phoenix Mercury are that prep school from uptown that nobody wanted to play because their roster was just too stacked. Penny Taylor, DeWanna Bonner, Candice Dupree, Brittney Griner, and Diana Taurasi? That right there is a starting five of assassins, made all the more terrifying because it’s eerily similar to the group that took home the WNBA championship trophy in 2014. What’s it like to come up against a team so loaded? The Connecticut Sun are about to find out.

The Mercury rise against the Connecticut Sun at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 31, at Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 East Jefferson Street. Tickets start at just $9. Visit mercury.wnba.com for more. Zach Fowle

Because there's no such thing as too much Comicon.EXPAND
Because there's no such thing as too much Comicon.
Mindy Wheeler

Comicon Pregame
Kick off your Comicon autograph hunting and welcome the Valley’s newest comic shop to town as Comic Outlaws hosts a Comicon Pregame. More than a dozen local and national creators will be on hand at the Mesa store, including Alfred Trujillo, Chad Wayne Hardin (Harley Quinn), and Marat Mychaels (Deadpool Corp). AZ Powergirl herself, Cara Nicole, will stop by as well to show off her cosplay.

“Just look for the giant Venom in the window,” says co-owner Mindy Wheeler, who will be signing and sketching her own work as well.

The party runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, June 1, at 930 West Southern Avenue in Mesa. Admission and refreshments are free. Visit comicoutlaws.com for more information. Michael Senft

Head north for a festival of conscious cinema.
Head north for a festival of conscious cinema.
Courtesy of Illuminate

Illuminate Film Festival
Need a getaway? We totally get it — and thankfully, so does Sedona’s artsy set. From 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 1, the red rock city will launch its third annual Illuminate Film Festival with a free-to-attend party featuring a screening of documentary-in-progress Be More at The Collective Sedona, 7000 Highway 179. The festival proper gets going on June 2, with a lineup of features and shorts revolving around the theme of “the best in conscious cinema.” This year’s highlights include Maya Angelou: And I Still Rise and Mantra: Sounds into Silence. Get away — and get a new perspective? Good deal. Screenings, panels, and discussions continue at various locations through June 5. Tickets range from $14 for a single screening to $444 for an all-access pass and are available, along with a complete schedule, at www.illuminatefilmfestival.com. Becky Bartkowski

Phoenix Comicon 2016
The annual entertainment explosion that is Phoenix Comicon has star power beaming from every angle, with Alex Kingston from ER and Doctor Who, Sean Astin of The Goonies and The Lord of The Rings trilogy, and Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Gates McFadden, among many others. In fact, you’ll have to resist asking Ralph Macchio, William Zabka, and Martin Kove to re-enact the final moments of 1984’s The Karate Kid. Cosplay will lean toward anime, video game, and comic-book personas, and sci-fi/fantasy icons, so score bonus points by dressing up as some obscure character. Need more nerd cred? Catch wreck in the Phoenix Ultimate Geek Smackdown trivia tournaments.

Phoenix Comicon takes over the Phoenix Convention Center, 100 North Third Street, starting on Thursday, June 2, when programming begins at noon and the exhibitor hall opens at 4 p.m. The fun continues through Sunday, June 5. Single-day admission is $15 to $40, depending on the day, and a full pass for all days is available for $70. Visit www.phoenixcomicon.com for more information. Jose Gonzalez

Upcoming Events

“You Can’t Kill A Story: The Murder of Don Bolles”
In 1976, a bomb was planted under the car of Don Bolles, a reporter for the Arizona Republic; 11 days later he was dead. Though the circumstances of his death are still somewhat mysterious, the mafia has always been a prime suspect. Forty years later (to the day), those who were there at the scene of the crime are coming together in the same spot for “You Can’t Kill A Story: The Murder of Don Bolles” at the Clarendon Hotel, 401 West Clarendon Avenue. The evening will consist of storytelling and sharing, and will be followed by a reception at the Clarendon.

This once-in-a-lifetime event starts at 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 2, at the Clarendon Hotel. Tickets are $25 each and can be purchased through www.eventbrite.com/e/you-cant-kill-a-story-the-murder-of-don-bolles-tickets-24697877015. Katrina Montgomery

Under the Rug/Debajo de la Alfombra
Rising Youth Theatre, the troupe that puts adult and youth artists together to create theater from, about, and for our communities (most famously, The Light Rail Plays, performed on moving trains and at stations), continues to hone its mission, bringing theater to people who might not be accustomed to it. Yet. Under the Rug/Debajo de la Alfombra is a show made up of three short plays developed with residents of Phoenix’s Garfield and Coronado neighborhoods. The private and personal stories told are those one usually keeps close to the chest, or sweeps under the rug.

The company swoops into Verde Park, 916 East Van Buren Street, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, June 2 and 3. Admission is free. Bring blankets, chairs, picnics, and a meaningful object or memento from your living room to share with the performers. Performances continue at Coronado Park on June 4 and 5. Visit www.risingyouththeatre.org. Julie Peterson

Shemer Art Center, which offers Art Renaissance lectures on artists including Auguste Rodin.EXPAND
Shemer Art Center, which offers Art Renaissance lectures on artists including Auguste Rodin.
Lynn Trimble

Art Renaissance Lecture
You might say French sculptor Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) had a thing for getting stoned. He’s best known for works done in marble, stone, and bronze – including The Cathedral, featuring two intertwined hands. They’re both right hands, by the way.

Ask why during the Art Renaissance Lecture on Rodin, which happens at Shemer Art Center, located at 5005 East Camelback Road, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 2. Michel Sarda, who recently revisited Rodin’s works in Paris, will be talking about Rodin’s sculptures, drawings, and sketches.

The lecture, with free snacks and beverages, costs $5. Make reservations at www.shemerartcenter.orgLynn Trimble

Upcoming Events


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