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Needle Exchange

For some people, the body is a temple. For others, it’s a temple in need of serious redecorating. Hence the many newbies who’ll attend this weekend’s AZ Tattoo Expo hoping to get some ink injected into their virgin flesh.

“It’s an opportunity to get tattooed or pierced by the best of the best without the travel expenses,” says event producer Sage O’Connell, owner of Urban Art Tattoo in Mesa. “A tattoo is a big decision, so choosing the right person for the job is crucial.”

From national names such as Jack Rudy and Bob Tyrrell to locals like Paolo Acuna, the show boasts more than 150 skin scribes. There will also be more than 25 tattoo-related contests, tons of merch, live music, and libations for like-minded ink fans. And while permanent makeup seminars and suspension performances are new this year, celebrity sightings shouldn’t be. Previous years’ celeb guests have included the likes of Arizona Cardinal Darnell Dockett and former Korn member Brian “Head” Welch.

Tour the tats at the AZ Tattoo Expo from noon to 11 p.m. Saturday, May 21, and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, May 22, at the Mesa Convention Center, 201 North Center Street.

Sat., May 21, 12-11 p.m.; Sun., May 22, 12-8 p.m., 2011


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