Nerd Culture

10 Nerdy Things to Do This April in Metro Phoenix

Neil Gaiman discusses his career as a comic book author, novelist, screenwriter, and voice actor at MAC.
Neil Gaiman discusses his career as a comic book author, novelist, screenwriter, and voice actor at MAC. Beowulf Sheehan

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click to enlarge Arizona Scientifica tours some of the Valley's most incredible laboratories. - PHOENIX CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL
Arizona Scientifica tours some of the Valley's most incredible laboratories.
Phoenix Children’s Hospital
Arizona Scientifica
Meet in the parking lot of the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art for Arizona Scientifica, a SMoCA staff-led tour of Phoenix’s laboratories. The tour includes hands-on activities at Stax 3D, demonstrations of mechanized exoskeletons at ASU’s Human Machine Integration Lab, and 3-D-printed hearts at the Cardiac 3DPrint Lab at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. The tour runs from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 8. Lunch and transportation is included in the tour, costing $100 per person or $90 for museum members. Call 480-874-4666 for more details.

click to enlarge Check out the past three years of progress from the ASU Institute of Human Origins at TCA. - COURTESY ASU INSTITUTE OF HUMAN ORIGINS
Check out the past three years of progress from the ASU Institute of Human Origins at TCA.
Courtesy ASU Institute of Human Origins
ASU Institute of Human Origins Science Symposium
As far as symposiums go, the ASU Institute of Human Origins has a pretty good one lined up in the name of science. The Evolutionary Foundations of Human Uniqueness event covers three years of research and projects made possible by a $4.9 million grant to the John Templeton Foundation. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 8, at the Tempe Center for the Arts. Attendees are asked to grab a free, but required, ticket.

click to enlarge The Phoenix Improv Festival has some of the best international improv groups, including Mail Order Bride, at Herberger Theater. - CRISTOBAL CANDELARIO
The Phoenix Improv Festival has some of the best international improv groups, including Mail Order Bride, at Herberger Theater.
Cristobal Candelario
Phoenix Improv Festival
Held at the Herberger Theater Center, the Phoenix Improv Festival is a collection of local and international performers and a series of workshops. Performers include B.E.T.H. from Los Angeles, The Cast from New York, Apollo 12 from Phoenix, and way more stuff — like the Four Pillars Of Improv workshop with Jacob Schneider. PIF 2017 starts at 7 p.m. each night from Thursday, April 20, to Saturday, April 22. Tickets range from $10 to $20. Call 480-389-4852 for general information.

click to enlarge The Official March For Science is ready to show its numbers on Earth Day in downtown Phoenix. - COURTESY OF OFFICIAL MARCH FOR SCIENCE
The Official March For Science is ready to show its numbers on Earth Day in downtown Phoenix.
Courtesy of Official March For Science
Official March For Science
This Earth Day, you can hit the concrete during the Official March For Science – happening throughout downtown Phoenix from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 22. The march begins with a rally at the Cesar Chavez Memorial Plaza at Historic City Hall, followed by the march, and then a Science Fair, speakers, and food trucks. The Phoenix March for Science is free to attend. See their Facebook group for more information.

Independent Bookstore Day
This annual, one-day event celebrates independently owned bookstores across the country. Saturday, April 29, is Independent Bookstore Day, and a couple of locally owned bookshops are celebrating with crafts, literary trivia, tarot card readings, "Shelfie" photo booth stations, Poetry on Demand from Four Chambers Press, an all-day coloring station, and happy hour pricing at First Draft Book Bar all day long. Meanwhile, at Poisoned Pen, they’ll be giving out some small prizes and running a sale, and their partner Libro.fm, will be giving away one free audio book. Both locations of Changing Hands will also be hosting some activities. Call 480-730-0205 for Changing Hands Tempe, and 602-274-0067 for Changing Hands Phoenix.
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Lauren Cusimano was the Phoenix New Times food editor from 2018 to 2021. Joys include eating wings, riding bikes, knowing everyone at the bar, talking too much about The Simpsons, and falling asleep while reading.