Home to a bevy of brainiacs, the Phoenix Metro area is rife with super smarties who are constantly sharing their findings -- running the geeky gambit from microbiology and art history to unsolved mysteries and urban planning.
For those jonesing to ramp up their IQs, here are five must-attend lectures hosted by said scholars in March.
5. Solving the Chupacabra Mystery
Phoenix Area Skeptics Society presents this investigative presentation on one of the Southwest's most fabled creatures: the Chupacabra.
Author Ben Radford presents his findings (the result of five years of research) on the bloodsucker, including how he unraveled the mystery.
4. Inside Prefab: The Ready-Made Interior
Pratt Institute Associate Professor of Interior Design Deborah Schneiderman discusses the history, contemporary use, and recent revival of prefabricated interior elements due to their sustainable nature.
3. Talk the Talk, Walk the Walk
Driving around downtown when it's not First Friday often means there are few to zero people walking around. Dan Burden would like to change that.
Burden is an expert on pedestrian and cycling programs, and at 9 a.m. on Thursday, March 15, he'll discuss how Phoenix can transform itself into a more walkable city -- or at least a less clogged, car-centric one.
2. Tales from the Haute Seas
Fashion curator Dennita Sewell gives an Aaron Sorkin-esque walk 'n' talk through Phoenix Art Museum's latest exhibition in the Ellman Fashion Design Gallery, "The Sea." It's a collection of nautically-inspired garb ranging from 1800s bathing costumes to seaside sportswear and modern oceanic couture.
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See the exhibition and hear Sewell's explanation of its maritime contents for free on March 21 at 7 p.m. See more here.
1. Lightweight Backpacking
Ever wanna jump ship, sell all your worldly belongings, and take off into the wilderness? REI's backpacking class will give you the basics on how to harness your inner Christopher McCandless (minus that whole dying in Alaska part) and stuff shelter, food, water, and, well, anything else you might need into a backpack that won't make you tip over.