For the average American, polo is a head-scratcher -- along the lines of what people in Yemen must think of pro football. But polo is arguably the most popular sport in the world after soccer. It's also one of the oldest, and the North Scottsdale Polo Club plays the game as it's been played for more than two millennia. Each squad has four mounted competitors who score by driving a ball into the opposing team's goal using a long-handled mallet. Not so tough, huh? Well, you try riding a galloping pony while trying not to get whacked in the skull by a croquet stick on steroids. As a Brit might say, it's bloody good fun, and many corpuscles are left on the turf in an average match. See for yourself when the NSPC has a club scrimmage on Saturday, November 26, and Sunday, November 27, at WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 North Pima Road. Matches begin at 1 p.m. each day. Admission is free. Call 480-835-6796 or visit www.northscottsdalepolo.com. -- Clay McNear
What a maroon (and gold)
Sparky Sun Devil and Wilbur T. Wildcat butt heads again on Friday, November 25, during the annual uncivil war between ASU and UofA. The victor wins bragging rights and the coveted Territorial Cup. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. at Tempe's Sun Devil Stadium. Call 480-965-2381. -- Clay McNear
North Scottsdale Polo Club
Run like a bird
Come get a case of the trots before even sitting down for Thanksgiving dinner. On Thursday, November 24, you can run toward a finish line filled with fowls during the 36th Annual Family Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot 10K at Red Mountain Park, 7745 East Brown in Mesa. A free turkey will be awarded to first-place finishers in each age group and division. For those jive turkeys too cool for the 6.2-mile race, a one-mile fun run and walk begins at 8:15 a.m., with a two-mile version following at 8:30. The 10K starts at 9. The day-of-race fee is $22. See www.GetSetAz.com. -- Steve Jansen
If you think the Pueblo is grande. . .
Before expensive water systems allowed us to do things like build sprawling golf courses in the desert, farming in Phoenix must've been like sleeping in Vegas: almost impossible. But the Hohokam people managed to grow crops in the Salt River Valley area from A.D. 450 to A.D. 1450 by constructing miles of canal systems. See some of the canal ruins during the "Park of Four Waters Tour," which starts at 10 a.m. Saturday, November 26, at Pueblo Grande Museum, 4619 East Washington. Admission costs $1 to $2. Call 602-495-0901. -- Niki D'Andrea
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