Barbie Blowout: In conjunction with the opening of the Health 'n' Home store at Arrowhead Towne Center, 75th Avenue and Bell Road in Peoria, Ruth Handler, inventor of the Barbie doll, makes a personal appearance and autographs her popular creations from 1 to 2 p.m. Sunday. A limited number of Barbies featuring Handler's signature will be on sale for $20 each, or Handler will sign your own dolls for $10 each (limit three per person); all proceeds benefit breast-cancer research. Admission is free. For details call 787-5800.
arts and minds
"A Child Is a Gift": Works by artists-in-training from South Mountain Magnet Arts High School, Coalition of Black Artists (COBA), and the ArtWeb program of Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Phoenix are displayed in this exhibit, which continues through January 2, 1996, at Symphony Hall, 225 East Adams. Viewing is during scheduled events only. For details call 954-8182 or 262-7272.
"Dick and Jane See Spot Run": This exhibit, featuring drawings and prints "about kids and dogs and stuff" by artists Frank Ybarra and Roberta Hancock, continues through November 24 at MARS Artspace, 126 South Central, in Luhrs Office Center. For details call 253-3541.
"Taste of Art": Tempe Arts Center, located at Tempe Beach Park, First Street and Mill, off old Salt River Bridge, hosts this series of introductory art classes for children ages 7 to 11. Sessions are slated for 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, November 18 and December 9. This time, kids learn how to make patchwork pictures and metal frames to put them in. The fee is $15, $12 for members. For details call 968-0888.
Fishing Demonstration and Festival: "Pathway to Fishing," a 12-step introduction to angling aimed at children, is scheduled for 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday in the parking lot at Phoenix Sports, 7500 South Priest in Tempe; participation is free. From 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, kids can try out their new skills at a free festival featuring clinics by Arizona Game and Fish Department, plus loaner poles, gratis bait, contests and more; the scene is the lake at Kiwanis Park, 6111 South All America Way in Tempe. For details call 345-1043.
at the wingding
Way Out West Bird Expo: Billed as Arizona's largest avian extravaganza, the WOW show features about 300 vendors displaying their flapping, squawking wares. It's slated for 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday in Exhibit Building at Arizona State Fairgrounds, 19th Avenue and McDowell. Tickets are $4, $2.50 for seniors, $1.50 for kids ages 5 to 12. Fairgrounds parking is $3 per vehicle. For details call 973-9282.
at the museum
"Bear With Us": This exhibit at Arizona Museum for Youth, 35 North Robson in Mesa, features multimedia representations of bruins of all shapes, sizes and sorts by Joe Baker, Carolyn Lavender, Anne Coe, Linda and Don Asakawa, Tom Franklin, Alonzo Jimenez, Ree Nancarrow and Dick George, plus interactive games and learning activities. It continues through February 2, 1996. Regular hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and 1 to 5p.m. Sundays; the museum is open from 10a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. Admission is $2, free for kids under 2. Call 644-2467.
"The Great Russian Dinosaurs": Mesa Southwest Museum, 53 North Macdonald, presents this major touring exhibition co-sponsored by City of Mesa and Paleontological Institute of Moscow. It features 24 full skeletons, as well as remains of dino nests, eggs and hatchlings, 50 skulls and dozens of other specimens collected this century from sites in Russia and Mongolia, many of which have never before been displayed in the West. The American premiere of the installation continues through February 4, 1996. Expanded hours are in effect throughout the "Dinosaur" exhibit's run: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and noon to 6 p.m. Sundays. Admission is $5, free for kids age 2 and under. Call 644-2230.
"Take It Apart" and "Science in the Sky": The former includes curiosity-sating explorations of the innards of home appliances, like televisions and toasters; it's scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Arizona Science Center, 147 East Adams, and participation is free with regular admission. The latter is a class focusing on astronomy. Two sessions featuring one-adult/one-child teams are planned on Sunday: 12:30 to 2 p.m. for children ages 7 to 10 and 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. for kids ages 5 and 6; the fee is $30, $25 for members; registration is required. Center hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. Usual admission is $4.50, $3.50 for kids ages 4 to 12 and seniors, free for kids age 3 and younger. For details call 256-9518 or 258-7250.
on the stage
Annie: Gilbert Fine Arts Association presents final performances of the musical at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 2 p.m. Saturday at Mesquite Junior High School, 130 West Mesquite in Gilbert. Tickets are $5 and $8. For details call 821-1356.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in Peoria: Playhouse Theatre presents Roald Dahl's fun fable about young Charlie Bucket and eccentric chocolatier Willy Wonka. Performances are at 7 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 7 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays, through November 19, in community room at Arrowhead Towne Center, 75th Avenue and Bell Road. Tickets are $4, $3 for kids age 12 and under; group rates are available. For details call 245-1566 or 979-6599.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in Phoenix: Valley Youth Theatre presents performances at 7:30 p.m. Friday, 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday and 2 and 5 p.m. Sunday at the group's venue at Tower Plaza Shopping Center, 3883 East Thomas. The play continues through November 19. Call 267-3880.
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Charlotte's Web: Desert Stages, Inc., presents its version of E.B.White's barnyard tale about the spider and the piglet. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Fridays, 1 and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays and 1 p.m. Sundays, through November 19, at the group's home, 8473 East McDonald in Scottsdale. Tickets are $6 in advance, $9 the day of the show. For details and reservations, call 483-1664.
Great Arizona Puppet Theater: GAPT, 3302 North Seventh Street, presents performances of the musical The Three Little Kittens at 10a.m. Thursday, 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday and 10 a.m. Wednesday. The production continues through November 22. Puppet-making and sing-along sessions are included. Tickets are $4, $3 for members; group rates are available. Reservations are suggested. Call 277-1275.
the Portrait the Wind the Chair: Childsplay continues its 19th season with this new play by Y York (Afternoon of the Elves). The story concerns sisters Lucy and Terroba, whose fanciful imaginations get the better of them one stormy day. This week's performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Saturday at Tempe Performing Arts Center, 132 East Sixth Street. The production continues through November 19. Tickets are $12.25, $9.25 for students and seniors; group rates are available. For details call 350-8112.