The "POW! Comic Book & Sequential Art" opens July 2.
The "POW! Comic Book & Sequential Art" opens July 2.
Jim Mahfood

"POW" Wows

The folks at downtown's Trunk Space Gallery are mining comic value -- in the most literal sense. A portion of proceeds from "POW! Comic Book & Sequential Art" -- a monthlong exhibition and sale opening Friday, July 2 -- benefits the ACTOR Comic Fund, a nonprofit aiding comic book creators in need. Produced in partnership with Samurai Comics, "POW!" spotlights works by nationally recognized comic artists as well as local self-publishers. "The artists showing, many of them are celebrities in the comic book world," says the Trunk Space's JRC.

A month's worth of parties pimp the exhibition. On opening night, DJ Red Bird spins a soundtrack for two live art shows: Blue Coble and David Bessent promise to "weave mural magic," and Rob Osborne and Albert Martinez are on tap to "give the crowd another shot of painting calamity."

On Saturday, July 3, local cartoonist and guest host Brandon Huigens reads his poetry and performs with the Galapagos Improv troupe, and "Drag Diva Vera Las Vegas" and friends hit the runway for a drag show.

Later in the month, a veggie hot dog barbecue and live music draw more comic lovers to The Space, 1506 Grand Avenue. Visit for details. --Jill Koch

Art Mobile

Dvorák and Beethoven serenade the Phoenix Art Museum

Thu 7/1
The halls are alive with the sound of music this Thursday, July 1, when a foursome from the Phoenix Symphony gigs at the Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central. The July installment of the Downtown Chamber Series gets under way at 7 p.m., with compositions by Dvor‡k (American String Quartet in F Major, Opus 96) and Beethoven (String Quartet, Opus 18). Call 602-254-1491 for tickets, $10. --Jill Koch

Ring Around the Caller

Gay square dancers do the 'wave

If your idea of square dancing equals blue-hairs do-si-doing at hoe-downs, set your worldview, er, straight at "Remake the Heatwave," the annual convention of the International Association of Gay Square Dance Clubs, from Thursday, July 1, through Monday, July 5, at the Arizona Biltmore, 2400 East Missouri. More than 1,200 will swing their partners (gay, hetero or otherwise) to callers Mike DeSisto, Randy Dougherty and Tony Oxendine during specialty "tips" (two-song dance sets). While most participants wear the requisite Western shirts and crinolines (traditional dresses) along gender lines, a few go drag or let loose in leather gear or go bare-chested. Fabulous. Admission is $200 (meals included), and registration is required. See --Benjamin Leatherman

Myths Guided

Legends will be made at ConKopelli

Hey, speculative-fiction authors, does your 5,000-word tome on El Chupacabra -- in a word -- suck? Head to "Westercon 57: ConKopelli" from Friday, July 2, through Monday, July 5, at the Wigwam Resort, 300 Wigwam Boulevard in Litchfield Park, for some new blood. "The Mythology of the Southwest" is the theme of the four-day affair, which includes a lecture on the celebrated goat-sucker, plus seminars on everything from rocketry to meditation. There's even a reading of The Very Secret Diaries of Lord of the Rings, "an alternative-lifestyle look at the LOTR characters, done in the style of Bridget Jones's Diary," says event publicist Lee Whiteside. Weekend admission is $85 for adults and half-price for children 7 to 12. Call 623-935-3811 or see --Benjamin Leatherman


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