9 Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Week

New Times picks the best things to do from Monday, July 25, through Thursday, July 28. For more events, see our curated online calendar. 

"A Group Effort"
It’s tough to find exhibitions featuring works by more than 50 artists outside museum walls or the art-festival circuit. But “A Group Effort,” a free exhibition presented by Vision Gallery and the Arizona Art Alliance, a nonprofit comprising members of more than 20 Arizona-based art groups, does just that.
“A Group Effort” includes works in diverse media such as painting, sculpture, jewelry, and glass – which you can see at two Chandler locations from noon to 4 p.m. on Monday, July 25. Vision Gallery is at 10 East Chicago Street, and Chandler Center for the Arts at 250 North Arizona Avenue.

The exhibition, which continues through Saturday, August 27, is a chance to explore art beyond Phoenix’s First and Third Friday arts scene. Visit Lynn Trimble

Legends of Song
Honestly, we would swoon all over the Herberger Theater Center if someone successfully impersonated Johnny Mathis for 50 minutes. T.A. Burrows covers more bases by paying tribute to eight other Legends of Song in his Lunch Time Theater production, including Frank Sinatra, Neil Diamond, and Elvis Presley.
The show is a refreshing break from a workday, with 12:10 p.m. performances continuing at 222 East Monroe Street through Thursday, August 4, but you also have the option of Lunch Time Theater After Dark, an early-evening preview on Monday, July 25. The event features a cash bar (or a $20 bundled admission that includes a drink, snack, dessert, and a parking pass). Doors open at 6 p.m. for the 7 p.m. show. Visit or call 602-252-8497. Julie Peterson

Lounge Bingo
Hip historian Marshall Shore can add emcee to his ever-growing résumé. The quirky personality and exceptional dresser has long played host to hipster game nights, and this week he guides players at The Clarendon Hotel through their chance to yell “BINGO!” — with a vintage grab bag of prizes in tow.

Past prizes have included a ceramic singing frog and escargot set, but free hotel stays and a gift card to its in-house restaurant, Café Tranquilo, are also available for the winning.

Depending on the likelihood of either heatstroke or haboobs, bingo is held on the rooftop sky deck or the lounge at 401 West Clarendon Avenue. (Call 602-252-7363 to confirm.) Free play starts at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 26. Visit for more. Janessa Hilliard

Dr. Who's-Day
The problem with Dr. Who — the longest-running sci-fi show on TV — is that there’s no way to be a casual fan. You could either spend hours discussing the Daleks and arguing which of the 12 incarnations of the Doctor is the greatest, or you’ve never seen an episode. Luckily there’s a place for hardcore Whovians: Dr. Who’s-Day, held every Tuesday at Gotham City Comics & Coffee. Gather with the comics shop hosts to watch new and old episodes, answer trivia questions about the show for fabulous prizes, and bring as many fellow fans as you want. Much like the TARDIS, the store’s bigger on the inside.

Your next chance to partake in the Doctor’s adventures is from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, July 26, at 46 West Main Street in Mesa. Call 480-649-3065 for more. Zach Fowle

Gay Skate Arizona
Dust off an '80s-inspired outfit and gather a pair of sea legs, Gay Skate Arizona is going neon.

The annual summer skate event takes over Great Skate Glendale, 10054 North 43rd Avenue, on Wednesday, July 27, for a night of old-school jams and middle school-era moves. Proceeds from the ride around the rink benefit GLSEN Phoenix (Gay, Lesbian, & Straight Education Network), which works to provide safe school environments for students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Get your skate on starting at 8:30 p.m. The $10 admission includes three hours of skate time, plus rental of skates or roller blades. This is an all-ages, LGBTQIA-friendly event. Not sturdy on wheels? Arcade-style games are available for patrons who wish to remain more stationary, and a snack bar will be open with pizza, hot dogs, candy, and bottled water for sale. Go to for information about future events. Janessa Hilliard

Carnival Day
You don’t need a DeLorean to revisit the past this summer – just take a trip to the Tempe Historical Museum, 809 East Southern Avenue. Every Wednesday for the month of July, you can explore the Museum’s current exhibition “Legend City” to find out what Phoenix was like in the 1960s and '70s and enjoy special crafts and performances for the whole family. The theme for this week is Carnival Day.
Travel through time from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 27. This event is free and open to the public. For more information visit or call 480-350-5100. Katrina Montgomery

The Lawnmower Man
One of many great things about FilmBar is the diversity of the programming that often complements its film screenings: commentary, live music, costume contests, and, on Thursday, July 28, a panel of smarty-pantses discussing 1992’s The Lawnmower Man. It’s part of the History of the Future series co-presented by FilmBar and ASU’s Center for Science and the Imagination.

The cheesy but much-beloved movie follows the (mis)adventures of Jobe, a landscaping guy who has an intellectual disability, and the scientist who gives him great powers — but not great responsibility — through wonder drugs and a virtual reality interface. Directed by Virtuosity’s Brett Leonard, The Lawnmower Man remains almost a blueprint for the way desire and revenge can make a regular person into a supervillain, given the right tools.

The mowing begins at 6:30 p.m. at 815 North Second Street. Admission is $6 and includes your first age-appropriate drink. See Julie Peterson

Hardboiled Discussion Group
Binge-watching all the old-school crime shows available on Netflix and need to get vocal about it? Get off the couch and meet some new pals.

The Hardboiled Discussion Group is the perfect opportunity to congregate with literary-minded folks who share your interest in crime fiction loaded with cynical characters, gritty language, and dark scenarios. This month, discuss The Marauders by Tom Cooper, a mystery set in a working class Gulf Coast town, after the region has been brutalized by the BP oil spill. Desperate times bring together a cast of shady characters. The book blabbing happens from 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 28, at The Poisoned Pen, 4014 North Goldwater Boulevard in Scottsdale. Admission is free. Call 480-947-2974 or visit Amy Young

"Infinite Possibly"
Some works of art are literally jaw-dropping, which is certainly the case for at least one piece featured in “Infinite Possibility: Art of Tomorrow,” an international juried exhibition curated by Claire C. Carter, who serves as contemporary art curator at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art.

Christine Cassano’s mixed-media sculpture titled Jawbreaker – created using found bone, concrete, metal, and moss – clearly fits the bill. It’s one of many works included in the show at Tilt Gallery, 7077 East Main Street in Scottsdale. Other featured artists include James Angel, Alexandra Bowers, Simona Gocan, Pilar Hanson, Sandra Klein, Brooke Molla, Elizabeth Odiorne, and Paula Riff.

See their works from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., as well as 7 to 9 p.m., on Thursday, July 28. Visit Lynn Trimble
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Zach Fowle
Contact: Zach Fowle
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
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