9 Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Weekend

First Friday takes to the alleys of downtown Phoenix.
First Friday takes to the alleys of downtown Phoenix.
Dustin Youso/Courtesy Kharli Mandeville

New Times picks the best events and things to do in metro Phoenix from April 1 through 3. 

"Alley Art"
The First Friday art scene has a habit of overflowing from galleries to doorsteps and stoops, and eventually into streets and vacant lots. Now a new monthly show, “Alley Art,” has tackled the final frontier in art space: the alley.

Created by Kharli Mandeville, the DIY-style show is lit and hung in the between-businesses alley connecting Fifth and Sixth streets, just off Roosevelt Row. This month’s “Alley Cats” exhibition is a knowing nod to its unconventional gallery and its typical inhabitants, featuring work from Dustin Youso, Jacki O, and Hector Fernando, among others.

Look for the art (and maybe watch your step) from 7 to 10 p.m. on First Friday, April 1, behind Lawn Gnome Publishing, 905 North Fifth Street. The event is free. For details, visit www.facebook.com/events/1308518729175252. Janessa Hilliard

Nathalie Cadieux as Snow, David Nelson as Charming in Nearly Naked's latest production.EXPAND
Nathalie Cadieux as Snow, David Nelson as Charming in Nearly Naked's latest production.
Laura Durant

Wonderland Wives
Sometimes a world première just emphasizes, sadly, why no one has done the play before. But you can count on Nearly Naked Theatre and playwright Buddy Thomas (Devil Boys from Beyond), whose Wonderland Wives takes its funny, shocking, kinda-dirty baby steps right here in Phoenix, to make you glad you got in on the ground floor.

It’s a reality show the way it should be: A handful of rapidly aging fairytale princesses act out and complain of insensitive husbands, literally monstrous children, and insufficient alcohol. Belle, Snow, and other favorites are on hand. And many of the roles have been cast genderblind, so you get to enjoy some drag along with your comic sexy times.

The show previews at 8 p.m. Friday, April 1, at Phoenix Theatre, 100 East McDowell Road, and continues through Saturday, April 23. Call 602-254-2151 or visit tickets.phoenixtheatre.com for tickets, which start at $19 to $24. Julie Peterson

Get in on the event formerly known as the Great Arizona Bicycle Festival.EXPAND
Get in on the event formerly known as the Great Arizona Bicycle Festival.
Kowit Phothisan/Flickr Creative Commons

Despite metro Phoenix’s recent efforts to reduce traffic and encourage alternative means of transportation — namely the ever-expanding light rail and the recently implemented Grid Bike Share — two-wheeling aficionados continue to list our fair city as one of the least bike-friendly places in the nation. The CycloMesa Bicycle Festival would beg to differ. Previously known as the Great Arizona Bicycle Festival, the three-day event celebrates all things bicycle and includes both the Criterium and El Tour de Mesa races (a BMX freestyle show), an extreme sports zone, a beer garden, and a splash zone for the kiddos. CycloMesa kicks off in downtown Mesa on Friday, April 1, at 3 p.m. It’s a free, family-friendly event. Visit www.cyclomesa.com or call 480-890-2613 for details. Rob Kroehler

Even if you didn't get home tour tickets, there's a ton to do.
Even if you didn't get home tour tickets, there's a ton to do.
Photo courtesy of Miles McDermott

Modern Phoenix Week 2016
More often than not, Modern Phoenix Week offers a new way to discover the driven-by, and with a Central-y located focus on Uptown Plaza and the Central Avenue Corridor, this year is no exception. Even though (unsurprisingly) the Modern Phoenix Home Tour through the Marlen Grove and Northwood homes from Ralph Haver and Fred Guirey has already sold out, many of the mid-century focused lectures, mixers, and exhibitions that precede it are available to attend.

Numerous events are sprinkled throughout the 10-day “week,” beginning at 6 p.m. on Friday, April 1, with a free reception for the MOD-AZ group showing of mid-century architecture, design, and community at Chartreuse Gallery, 1301 Grand Avenue. Other oughta-sees: the free Insider Tour of Uptown Plaza on Saturday, April 2, and the Ultimate Tour of the Hotel Valley Ho ($19.56) on Sunday, April 3. Admission varies per event. Plan outings and snatch up tickets at www.modernphoenix.net/hometour. Janessa Hilliard

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