13 Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Weekend

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New Times picks the best things to do in metro Phoenix from Friday, October 7, through Sunday, October 9. For more, see our curated calendar of events

The 17th Annual Best of Phoenix A'Fare
Best of Phoenix 2016: Bordertown hit stands a week ago, and that means it’s time to celebrate. The Best of Phoenix A’Fare is just the place. Held at the Westin Kierland Resort & Spa, 6902 East Greenway Parkway in Scottsdale, the soiree will feature cuisine from more than 40 restaurants, a make-your-own Moscow Mule bar, a shoe shine lounge, on-draught Stella Artois, and live entertainment. Cocktail attire is recommended for the 21-and-over party, which runs from 7 to 11 p.m. on Friday, October 7. General admission tickets are $45 and include entry as well as unlimited food samples, cocktails, wine, and beer. Get yours and details at www.bestofphoenixafare.com. Becky Bartkowski

"Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic"
Imagine someone approaching you on the street and saying he wants to paint your portrait. Most people with street smarts would turn away — unless that man was Brooklyn-based artist Kehinde Wiley, whose paintings setting everyday people in scenes from famous artworks will be featured in “A New Republic,” an exhibition opening October 7 at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Avenue.

The exhibition features 60 works, including paintings and sculpture, which span the artist’s prolific 14-year career. Friday’s opening from 6 to 10 p.m. includes live music, pop-up performances, photo booths, live drawing in the galleries, and a DJ set inspired by Wiley’s “The World Stage” series. Museum admission is free that night, but nonmembers pay $5 to see the Wiley exhibition — which explores issues of race, gender, and the politics of representation. The exhibition, organized by the Brooklyn Museum, continues through January 8, 2017. Visit www.phxart.org. Lynn Trimble

Mishka Shubaly and Kristine Levine
Those looking for an intentionally funny match-up of a man and woman going head-to-head on stage ahead of the second presidential debate don’t need to go much further than midtown’s The Rebel Lounge on Friday night.

It’s a battle of wits and one-liners when Mishka Shubaly and Kristine Levine take the stand-up stage during the Bigger and Badder Tour, bringing comedy to the club at 2303 East Indian School Road. Fans of funny might recall Shubaly’s recent appearances at Literally the Worst Show Ever and Bird City Comedy Festival, while loyal Portlandia viewers and die-hard Doug Stanhope fans will recognize Levine from her work with both.

Hosted by Anwar Newton and featuring producer Erick Biez, it’s Shubaly versus Levine (sort of) at 8 p.m. on October 7. Doors open at 7 p.m. for the 21-and-over event. Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 the day of. For details and to purchase tickets, visit www.therebellounge.com and www.ticketfly.com. Janessa Hilliard

Namaste AZ Yoga Festival
Time to finally use that Lululemon gift card, because the first-ever Namaste AZ Yoga Festival will have you stretching it out for three days straight. The inaugural Namaste AZ Yoga Festival starts with classes from 4 to 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, October 6, and flows to Sunday, October 9, at the Camby Hotel, 2401 East Camelback Road. Events include classes like Happy Yoga Hour and Chakra Meditation from Arizona-based and nationally known instructors, plus workshops on how to make a yoga playlist, presenters like Buddhist speaker Gesche Michael Roach, vendors, and more.

Tickets for Thursday are $25 at namasteazyogafestival.com. Prices range from $29 for a single class drop-in to $299 for the whole festival. For further details, call 480-720-1838 or visit www.facebook.com/events/972575432796140. Lauren Cusimano

Fangoria FearCON
Dying to strut your spooky or undead self in front of an audience? Get your chance at the Fangoria FearCON. Twisted Airbrushing’s workshop will help you get all done up like a favorite zombie or horror character for a beauty pageant. Too interactive for you? There’s plenty of other fear-filled fun, including movie screenings, panel discussions, and scary celebrities. This year’s guests include Eugene Clark, zombie Big Daddy in George Romero’s Land of the Dead, and Monique Dupree, who’s been in more than 60 films, including Bikini Bloodbath Christmas. The gory good time happens from 3 to 10 p.m. on Friday, October 7, at Sun Studios of Arizona, 1425 West 14th Street in Tempe. Admission is $30 to $150, and the event runs through October 9. Call 602-399-9500 or visit phoenixfearcon.com. Amy Young

Arizona Dance Festival 2016
More than 10 local dance groups are taking to the stage on Friday, October 7, for the kick-off of the two-night Arizona Dance Festival, happening at Tempe Center for the Arts, 700 West Rio Salado Parkway. Featured performers include professional and student dancers from local dance companies, dance studios, and community college dance programs based in Chandler, Glendale, Mesa, Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tempe.

The festival is presented by Tempe-based Desert Dance Theatre, headed by artistic director Lisa Chow, and the Arizona Dance Coalition, a statewide membership-based organization. Pay $20 for a single night or $30 to see both showings, which feature different performances. Friday’s lineup includes ballet, contemporary, modern, tap, and interdisciplinary dance. Visit desertdancetheatre.org. Lynn Trimble

Puerto Rican Festival of Arizona
It’s a bit of an understatement to say that the U.S. continues to screw over its little island incorporated territory Puerto Rico. As the country dives deeper into an economic pit backed by corrupt corporate interests — ones that recently left the island in a three-day blackout — the federal government denies any culpability and refuses to help. Still, the rich traditions of the port manage to shine through with cuisine, music, and art. To honor those cultural elements, head to Heritage Square Park on Saturday, October 8, for the 10th annual Puerto Rican Festival of Arizona.

Soundtracked by live salsa and reggaton music, the day will host food booths, folkloric dance performances, and more. Kids ages 12 and younger enter free, folks ages 13 to 20 pay $10, and admission for the 21-and-over crowd is $15. The event runs from noon until 10 p.m. See details at www.facebook.com/events/1032220593541536Heather Hoch

Classic Simpsons Trivia
Quick question: who was the skywriter Apu hired to write a romantic message to Manjula in the Simpsons episode “I’m with Cupid”?

If you answered “Fantastic Dan,” bring your Lisa-like brain down to the Coronado on Saturday, October 8, when Classic Simpsons Trivia returns for a night of know-it-all about America’s favorite animated family. The free quiz focuses exclusively on seasons one through 10, so if you’ve been busy tuning in to the 28th season on FOX, it’s time to dig out some box sets. Play starts at 8 p.m. on the patio of 2201 North Seventh Street. Food and drink specials are available — after all, a wise yellow man once said, “alcohol is the cause of and solution to all of life’s problems.” Visit www.flimspringfield.net and thecoronadophx.com for details. Janessa Hilliard

Musical Icon: John Lennon
Celebrate the life and legacy of the bespectacled Beatle as the Musical Instrument Museum hosts Musical Icon: John Lennon from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, October 8.

Now in its second year, the event, which is free with regular museum admission ($20 for adults), features lectures and film screenings about the late Beatle, who was assassinated in 1980. Visitors can take part in trivia contests and see the piano on which Lennon wrote his most famous hit — and imagine the songs that might have come out if it had Mark David Chapman not cut short the artist’s life.

The Musical Instrument Museum is located at 4725 East Mayo Boulevard. For more information and full admission prices, call 480-478-6000 or visit mim.org. Michael Senft

Halloween at Hogwarts
Quick, figure out your Patronus so you have an answer when someone asks at Halloween at Hogwarts, returning to Phoenix Symphony Hall, 75 North Second Street.

Listen as our local symphony takes you to wizarding school at 2 and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 8, with 90 minutes of immediately recognizable music from the Harry Potter movies, plus some seasonal favorites and “a spooktacular dose of magic.” There’s also sure to be a Platform 9 3/4 photo op somewhere.

Costumes are heavily encouraged, be they your favorite Rita Skeeter ensemble, a mean Bellatrix Lestrange, a spooky Sirius Black, a stone-faced Snape, or just your regular clothes with a lightning bolt forehead scar drawn with lip liner.

Tickets range from $48 to $93 at tickets.phoenixsymphony.org or by calling 602-495-1999 or 800-776-9080. For more information, visit phoenixsymphony.org. Lauren Cusimano

Monster Jam
Devastator. Hotsy. Raminator. No one would judge you for assuming these were names of products you might purchase discreetly at your neighborhood Castle Boutique. Close. They’re monster trucks, and they — or other somewhat euphemistically named gas guzzlers — will be rolling through Glendale’s University of Phoenix Stadium, One Cardinals Drive, on Saturday, October 8.

While it’s tempting to turn up a smug nose at a brand of entertainment that features pervasive pyrotechnics, countless sacrificial Geos getting demolished, and — like halibut and a good chardonnay — pairs beautifully with nacho balls, the maneuvers the trucks are able to perform are indeed impressive. It’s not every day that you see a 1,500-horsepower truck with 66-inch tires successfully drive away from a backflip. Monster Jam, the automotive equivalent to SmackDown Live, kicks off at 7 p.m. Gates open at 5 p.m. Admission is $15 and up. Visit www.monsterjam.com or call 602-379-7878 for details. Rob Kroehler

History Underground
One of Phoenix’s most infamous people made headlines back in the 1930s when she got busted on a train to LA with a suitcase containing the dismembered remains of someone she murdered.

Didn’t know that? Well, Phoenix’s hip historian, Marshall Shore, is devoted to keeping you in the loop about such things when he hosts History Underground: Obscure Anecdotes of Phoenix Events. Learn more details about Winnie Ruth Judd, a.k.a. the Trunk Murderess, and also get yourself schooled on other semi-forgotten people and events that are part of the city’s past. Get the scoop on the scandals at 7 p.m. on Sunday, October 9, at Valley Bar, 130 North Central Avenue. Admission is $5 to the 21-and-over event. Call 602-368-3121 or visit www.valleybarphx.com. Amy Young

"Space in Between"
It’s called a triple threat: Renowned Mexico-born artist Margarita Cabrera, the ASU Art Museum, and the Desert Botanical Garden are teaming up to give us “Space in Between” — an event that’s part exhibition and part workshop, where participants create desert plant sculptures out of old Border Patrol uniforms and add embroidered details from personal immigration stories.

The project runs from October 7 to February 12, 2017. Hours for Sunday, October 9, are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Ottosen Gallery at Dorrance Hall within the Desert Botanical Garden, 1201 North Galvin Parkway, where works will also be displayed before heading on a national tour in 2017.

Entrance is included with membership or paid entry, which is $22 for adults. For more information, call 480-941-1225 or visit www.dbg.org. Lauren Cusimano

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