8 Free Things to Do in Metro Phoenix, December 2 to 4

Bust your budget on gift-giving this season? No sweat. Here are eight things to do for a grand total of free this weekend in metro Phoenix. (Though, we admit, you'll have to put your window-shopping glasses on for a few.) If you're feeling spendy, see New Times' curated online calendar for more events.

Crafeteria 2016
Black Friday may be the first hint that the holiday hustle and bustle is here, but it doesn’t quite feel like shopping season until the night of Frances’ annual Crafeteria, which takes over the Medlock Plaza parking lot from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, December 2.

Now in its 11th year, the shop-till-you-drop marketplace at 10 West Camelback Road features 40 local vendors and their handmade, Pinterest-worthy products. Frances regulars will recognize plenty of boutique staples among them, like holiday-scented creations from Standard Wax candles, cheeky and desert-themed pins from Jar of Buttons, Iconic Cocktail’s crafty collection of mixers (just add alcohol!), and nature-inspired jewelry from Ashley Weber. Browse to live music from the Henry Co., re-energize with bites from Short Leash Hot Dogs, Mustache Pretzel, and Urban Cookies, and head home with a finished list — and the kind of clear conscience that comes from shopping local. See or call 602-279-5467 for details. Janessa Hilliard

First Friday Comedy Hour
In the final month of arguably the worst year that ever was, there’s not much we can do but laugh before wishing 2016 good riddance. And there will be plenty of chances to do just that during the First Friday Comedy Hour starting at 10 p.m. on Friday, December 2, at Lawn Gnome Publishing, 905 North Fifth Street. Low-key dubbed #TheNightOfTwoDanas, this edition of the totally free and hilarious show will feature Rob Maebe, Dana Bersch, Tristan Bowling, the spunky Dana Whissen, Shapel Lacey, and Paul Goebel, who you might know from the time he fully dominated on @midnight. With that all-star lineup, you may doubt this show is actually free. But we promise it’s no evil 2016 trickery. The Facebook event even says so: Evie Carpenter

"Tiny Works | Tiny Dances II"
Some serious downsizing is happening at {9} The Gallery, 1229 Grand Avenue, during “Tiny Works | Tiny Dances II.” It’s an exhibition of small-scale works by 100 or so artists, which includes sculptures, paintings, photographs, drawings, collages, and mixed media. None measures more than 12-by-12 inches, or costs more than $300.

Participating artists include William Barnhart, Swapna Das, Pete Deise, Kyllan Maney, Rembrandt Quiballo, Onna Voellmer, and Danielle Wood.

The free opening, from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, December 2, includes dance performances on 4-by-4-foot stages, presented by CONDER/dance. Featured choreographers and dancers include Elisa Cavallero, Liliana Gomez, and Nicole L. Olson. Performances take place at 7:30, 8:30, and 9:30 p.m.

The exhibition continues through Friday, December 16. Visit Lynn Trimble

Superstition Review Launch Party
Discover new voices in fiction, art, and nonfiction as ASU’s online literary journal Superstition Review hosts a launch party for its Fall 2016 issue. On Thursday, December 1, the 18th issue will be published. Founding editor Patricia Colleen Murphy welcomes readers to meet and greet the creators behind the new issue.

The journal, which was launched in 2009, contains more than four dozen works in various media, including short fiction, poetry, and art, from new and established figures like award-winning author Sherril Jaffe and arts critic Debbie Hagan.

The party runs from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing, 450 East Tyler Mall on Arizona State University’s Tempe campus. Admission is free. For more information, visit Michael Senft

Read on for a black light party (really!) and a zine store's comeback.
ToXin black Light Party
Back in the ’70s, having a black light in your bedroom allowed its purple glow to enhance your cool factor. Nowadays, these lights aren’t so common as household décor, but shindigs boasting the ultraviolet luminescence do abound.

The ToXin Black Light Party is such an event that lets you have an entire night of glow-in-the-dark fun. Dance to live music and DJ sets, all for hours. There are also drink specials, craft beers, and a variety of games, from arcade fun to billiards. Sport your best white and neon duds for maximum illumination from 8 p.m. on Saturday, December 3, until the clock strikes 2 a.m. at The Grid: Games and Growlers, 525 South Gilbert Road, #A-7, in Mesa. Admission is free. Call 480-621-8088 or visit Amy Young

The World Bazaar & Phoenix Community Market
’Tis the season for local shopping events. But this year, one local market has a special international flair. The World Bazaar & Phoenix Community Market at 19th Avenue and Camelback Road features vendors from the local community of refugee artists and craftsmen. The market showcases a variety of crafts from around the world, from African beadwork to Middle Eastern jewelry, with international food and beverages to sample, too. There will be a special kids’ zone with face painting, hair braiding, and other hands-on activities.

The market is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 3, at the 19th Avenue and Camelback Road Light Rail stop. Admission is free. This event is co-sponsored by Local First Arizona, the International Rescue Committee, Valley Metro, and the City of Phoenix. For more information, visit Katrina Montgomery

Wasted Ink Zine Distro Grand Re-Opening
Marna Kay and Charissa Lucille have turned a notice of rental termination into a new lease on life — or at least their business.

When the duo behind Wasted Ink Zine Distro found themselves (and their store) booted from their Tempe location earlier this fall, they packed up their extensive zine library and headed for a new home. Now they’re setting up shop across the Valley at the Hive Gallery, 2222 North 16th Street, and are celebrating with a grand re-opening party.

Flip through hundreds of titles and cozy up with some good paper product during the free launch event starting at 7 p.m. on Saturday, December 3. The party features zinesters Native Zinestress, Pity Party Zine, and Queer Indigenous Girl, along with live poetry from Joy Young and Trejon Dunkley, music, and refreshments.

Visit for store and celebration details. E-mail [email protected] to submit a zine or for distribution inquiries. Janessa Hilliard

Art and Objects Studio Sale
Chances are, you still need to find a few bits and pieces to finish up (or start) your holiday shopping. Head to Patricia Sannit’s free-to-attend Art and Objects Studio Sale, happening from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, December 4, at 2631 East Cortez Street.

You’ll find art, adornments, and gifts created by Sannit and 13 additional artists, who work in diverse media such as painting, ceramics, photography, sculpture, textiles, and jewelry. Participating artists include Lexie Bowers, Chris Jagmin, Christy Puetz, Lisa Olsen, and Sherrie Zeitlin.

Sannit’s sale is a chance to meet local artists and shorten your gift list while sampling Sannit’s take on a Scandinavian hot, spiced wine called glogg. Shop for yourself, too. Your secret is safe with Sannit. Visit Lynn Trimble
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Becky Bartkowski is an award-winning journalist and the arts and music editor at New Times, where she writes about art, fashion, and pop culture.
Contact: Becky Bartkowski
Evie Carpenter is a visual journalist. Using photography, videography, design, and sometimes words, she tells stories she hopes make a bit of difference in the world, even if those stories are in list form and include GIFs.
Contact: Evie Carpenter
Janessa is a native Phoenician. She joined New Times as a contributor in 2013. You can connect with her on social media at @janessahilliard, and she promises you'll find no pictures of cats on her Instagram — but plenty of cocktails.
Contact: Janessa Hilliard
Katrina Montgomery
Michael runs the Sci-Fridays Book Club at the Poisoned Pen, and volunteers at local pop-culture conventions. He can be found at the occasional prog-rock concert.
Contact: Michael Senft
Lynn Trimble is an award-winning freelance writer and photographer specializing in arts and culture, including visual and performing arts
Contact: Lynn Trimble
Amy Young is an arts and culture writer who also spends time curating arts-related exhibits and events, and playing drums in local bands French Girls and Sturdy Ladies.
Contact: Amy Young