After six endless weeks of endless hype, treacly commercials, and non-stop carols, we're only 48 hours or so from the arrival of Christmas morning. But you don't have to wait until then to get your presents, as Up on the Sun is presenting y'all with 10 inexpensive activities to be had from tonight through Sunday.
Despite the fact there's no work, your friends and co-workers (the luckier ones, at least) have jetted off to destinations around the world, and many local businesses will be closed, there's plenty of holiday fun to be had (and we're not referring to sitting around sucking down eggnog while watching maudlin movies on the boob tube), including plenty of nighttime naughtiness.
We've made up our list (and checked it twice) of some of the cheap thrills you can experience during the five-day Christmas weekend. Have a look-see for yourself.
Naughty & Spice at Afterlife (Thursday):
In case you haven't heard, today is the final day y'all can legally purchase synthetic marijuana (a.k.a. spice) before the substance becomes verboten. Old Town after-hours establishment Afterlife is marking the occasion with an all-out affair celebrating spice and will serve $10 pre-rolled joints, $10 grams of various blends, $15 hookahs, and other delights. Body-painted elves, DJs, and other holiday hi-jinks will take place. 10 p.m.; $10 for girls, $15 for guys. (4282 E. Drinkwater Blvd., Scottsdale)
Eastside Records Christmas Eve Eve Memorial (Thursday):
"Though Eastside Records' Christmas Eve Eve Memorial ushers the demise of one of the best old school record shops in the Valley, it's a pretty badass way to go out. After nearly 25 years in business, co-owners Steven Gastellum, Michael Pawlicki, and Ben Wood are pulling the plug on the iconic institution. For the shindig, they've invited former employees John Minardi and Ryan O'Sullivan to host and spin records for the shop's last get-down..." (read more) 5 p.m., free. (217 W University Dr., Tempe) -- Jose Gonzalez
Funk Your X-Mas Eve at Sail Inn (Friday):
Feeling a little funky? The cats taking the stage at the Sail Inn tomorrow night most definitely will be when they bust out with bouncing rhythms and entertain a holiday crowd with plenty of soulful musical stylings. In addition to performances by Funk Box, DJ Stowner, and the Dead Rabbit Gang, The Zen Lunatics will conduct their weekly rockaroke session. This being the holiday season, there will also be plenty of twinkling lights via an LED light show by Pyrokinesis Esoteric. 8 p.m.; $4 with a canned food donation, $5 without.
Uncensored Friday's Night Before Xmas Party at Club Trinity (Friday):
The folks at VIP Enterprises are betting that plenty of peeps will be out and about tonight, which is why they're staging a Night Before Xmas Party. The event coincides with their weekly Uncensored Fridays 18-and-over dance night at Club Trinity and will feature hip-hop and Top 40 tracks laid down by DJ Shadow. (read more) 9 p.m., $5 for those who bring their school IDs or sign up on VIP Enterprises' guest list. (1420 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale)
Carvin Jones at Tim Finnegan's (Friday):
"Eric Clapton once called Carvin Jones "the next up-and-coming blues player," and Jones has just kept on coming, holding down multiple gigs per week at local venues like Tim Finnegan's, where he wails out blues standards and classic rock covers with aplomb. This man's finger's are fast and flashy, and he never misses a note." 9 p.m., free. (9201 N 29th Ave.) -- Niki D'Andrea
Blues Christmas at Rhythm Room (Saturday):
The holidays are all about getting together with your nearest and dearest, which is why Bill Tarsha and the rest of the Rocket 88s are gathering a few of their friends for an evening of down-home tunes on Christmas night at the Rhythm Room. Guitarist Johnny Rapp and bassist Paul Thomas will also participate. 8 p.m., $7. (1019 E. Indian School Rd.)
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Pitch and Moan at Lost Leaf (Saturday):
The arty establishment will be bumping with both beats and beer as a collection of DJs and hip-hop artists and DJs demonstrate their mad mic and mixing skills. The lineup includes Lakai, Optimal, Jack the MC, The S.H.I.T., Spit Suicide, and special guests. Giveaways will also take place and drink specials include $2 PBRs, Old Style, and Schlitz. 9 p.m., free. (914 N. 5th St.)
Deck The Balls 2 at SideBar (Saturday):
P-Town party promoter Jen Deveroux apparently loves putting on inappropriately-named holiday parties at SideBar. First it was Turkey Tits last Thanksgiving Night, and now its the second annual Deck the Balls on Christmas night. Lovely. As before, the event features DJ time by Tricky T, William Fucking Reed, and a special guest spinster (in this case, Jane Vanderbilt). 9:30 p.m., free. (1514 N. 7th Ave.)
A Flathead Christmas at Yucca Tap Room (Friday):
Chances are incredibly likely that if you're reading this then you're a fan of the Yucca Tap. Which means you'll probably be heading down to the Tempe tavern for a wee nip or on Christmas night. Since you're gonna be there anyways, the members of Flathead are planning on serenading you with their array of Americana-style rock songs. The Charlie Shooter Band and Tucson's Al Perry will also perform. 9 p.m., free. (29 W. Southern Ave.)
Paisley Yankolovich at The Secret Place (Sunday):
"While Yankolovich's perspective is Christian-based, his music is nothing near what you'd hear in the halls of the Trinity Broadcast Network. Rather, Yankolovich delves deep into his personal life to bring to light stories of personal redemption and weathering rejection, even from those claiming the same beliefs. With a showman's stage presence, Yankolovich's Rocky Horror-style calls out to the masses, mainstream and outcasts alike, with a message of acceptance and love beyond mere tolerance..." (read more) 7 p.m., free (1527 W. Briles Rd.) -- Jose Gonzalez