Peach, plum, and apricot trees are in bloom.
Peach, plum, and apricot trees are in bloom. Airi Katsuta
TGIF, right? This weekend, you can attend a live taping of the Small Town Murder podcast, witness a smackdown at the Arizona Wrestling Federation, or celebrate spring at the Japanese Friendship Garden. For more things to do, visit Phoenix New Times' calendar.

John Mulaney
John Mulaney knows the art of the rebound. You can find the former Saturday Night Live writer and erstwhile network sitcom star on Netflix with Nick Kroll. The pair star in the adult animated comedy Big Mouth and Oh, Hello On Broadway, in which they play disturbing and hilarious seniors with a public access show titled Too Much Tuna. Mulaney and Kroll have hosted the Film Independent Spirit Awards twice now. And this year, they made headlines taking digs at Harvey Weinstein and Brett Ratner.

Mulaney is currently touring his show Kid Gorgeous, which mixes hilarious personal stories from the comedian’s life with bits of topical humor. Showtime is 8 p.m. on Friday, March 23, at Comerica Theatre, 400 West Washington Street. Tickets are $38.50. For more information, visit the Comerica Theatre website. Jason Keil

Markus Schulz
The Valley’s nightlife scene has produced its fair share of superstar DJs over the years. Besides old-school cats like Z-Trip and Eddie Amador, both of whom were staples of local clubs back in the ’90s, there are more recent success stories like Mija, Bijou, and Ghastly.

Markus Schulz, however, tops ‘em all. Long before the trance mixmaster became one of the highest-paid DJs in the world and a regular at high-profile festivals like Electric Daisy Carnival and Ultra, he was honing his craft at raves and club gigs around town (including a residency at the old Scottsdale nightspot The Works).

On Friday, March 23, Schulz returns to the Valley for a gig at Maya Day & Nightclub, 7333 East Indian Plaza in Scottsdale, in support of his latest album, Dakota: The Nine Skies. Doors open at 10 p.m. and local DJs Danny Stephen and Munition will open. Admission is $10. See the Steve LeVine Entertainment website. Benjamin Leatherman

click to enlarge Joshua Murphy plays Hotspur (a.k.a. Sir Henry Percy) in Henry IV, Part I. - LAURA DURANT
Joshua Murphy plays Hotspur (a.k.a. Sir Henry Percy) in Henry IV, Part I.
Laura Durant
Henry IV, Part I
William Shakespeare knew enough to throw us a bone by giving fictional characters with distinctive names. In the histories, though, accurate names are obligatory, giving us multiple dudes named Edward. Or Richard. Or Henry. That’s one of many reasons you should see the works staged live — for example, Southwest Shakespeare Company’s production of Henry IV, Part I through Saturday, April 7.

No two of the cast members share so much DNA that you’ll have trouble telling Henry the king from Henry his son or Henry their enemy. And unlike nowadays, numerous people craved the throne of England, so the story’s action-packed and conflict-ridden. The play also introduces Falstaff, the young prince’s hedonistic wingman and one of the great characters of the English drama.

Showtime on opening night, Friday, March 23, is 7:30 p.m. at Mesa Arts Center, 1 East Main Street. Tickets are $29 to $47 at the Southwest Shakespeare Company website or 480-644-6500. Julie Peterson

2018 American Indian Student Art Show & Sale
Show your support for young emerging artists from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, March 23, when the Heard Museum Guild presents a free public preview for its 2018 American Indian Student Art Show & Sale. The event features traditional and fine art made by students in grades seven through 12. All hail from Native communities, primarily in Arizona and New Mexico.

“Many schools don’t have art programs, so this gives kids an avenue for making and showing artwork,” guild volunteer Jane Przeslica says. “Several past participants have become established artists who show and sell their work at Heard Museum fairs.”

Sales start the next day and run through Monday, March 26, at the Heard, 2301 North Central Avenue. Visit the Heard Museum website. Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge Downtown Chandler hosts barbecue, beer, and live music on March 24. - COURTESY OF THE GREAT AMERICAN BARBEQUE & BEER FESTIVAL
Downtown Chandler hosts barbecue, beer, and live music on March 24.
Courtesy of the Great American Barbeque & Beer Festival
Great American Beer and Barbecue Festival
You’ll have plenty of saucy, chewy items to sink your teeth into when more than 40 pit masters convene to showcase signature barbecued meats. Those carnivorous delights are only one component of the annual Great American Beer and Barbecue Festival. Beer is the other, obviously.

But boozy drinks won’t be limited to the hops-oriented. This year, spirits like vodka and bourbon are in the mix. Country music acts will serve up entertainment on two stages. The headliner is Rodney Atkins, known for his No. 1 hit “Yours.” Bands Honeygirl and Pick and Holler also will keep the festival crowd revved up.

This saucy party runs from noon to 10 p.m. on Saturday, March 24, at 178 East Commonwealth Avenue in Chandler. Tickets are $10 to $20. Kids 12 and younger get in free. A VIP pass is $175. Visit the Chandler BBQ website. Amy Young

Michael Rincon/
Phoenix Rising v. OKC Energy
Given the impressive manner in which the Phoenix Rising finished last season, the team has some lofty goals for 2018. The team have an ambitious preseason, including games against MLS teams. That’s only served to galvanize an already formidable USL team — and lend some daunting credibility to their “championship or bust” mentality.

There’s a lot to like about the Valley’s premier soccer team. Here’s hoping their moniker continues being more prescient than predictable. Catch the Rising’s home opener against the OKC Energy at 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 24, at Scottsdale’s Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex, 751 North McClintock Drive. Tickets are $17 and up. Visit the Phoenix Rising website or call 602-900-0083 for details. Rob Kroehler

Peach, plum, and apricot trees are in bloom. - AIRI KATSUTA
Peach, plum, and apricot trees are in bloom.
Airi Katsuta
Haru in the Garden
At the Japanese Friendship Garden, spring is a time of renewal, when colorful peach, plum, and apricot trees are in bloom. Celebrate the season during Haru in the Garden, an Asian fusion cultural festival that runs from 6 to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 24.

Expect pink and white lanterns scattered throughout the garden, 1125 North Third Avenue, and an installation of flower art resembling cherry blossom trees. The festival will highlight different styles of music and dance, including jazz, flamenco, taiko drumming, and traditional music on Chinese string instruments. The tea garden will offer matcha cappuccino, Shakuhachi flute music, and an antique Chirimen doll exhibition.

Tickets cost $25 to $30 for general admission, $5 for children 3 to 12, and free for children younger than 3. For more information, see the Japanese Friendship Garden website. Laura Latzko

click to enlarge Join the pride stride. - COURTESY OF PHOENIX FRONTRUNNERS
Join the pride stride.
courtesy of Phoenix Frontrunners
Pride Run Phoenix
Race season is quickly coming to a close in the Valley. But don’t fret. It’s not too late to sign up for Pride Run Phoenix. Whether you choose the half-marathon, 10K, or 5K distance, there will be entertainment and refreshments waiting for you when you cross the finish line at the Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Avenue.

Dan Shabra of Phoenix Frontrunners, which puts on the race, describes it as an event where “everyone can come together in a setting free of bias that fosters camaraderie, positive experiences, and builds lasting friendships across communities.”

Lace up on Saturday, March 24. Starting points vary, depending on course length. For more information, visit the Pride Run Phoenix website. Jason Keil

click to enlarge We wouldn't want to mess with R-Three. - BENJAMIN LEATHERMAN
We wouldn't want to mess with R-Three.
Benjamin Leatherman
Arizona Wrestling Federation
Dom Vitalli is an absolute jerk. The local pro wrestler is a pompous, vicious, and downright dastardly villain who considers fans of the Arizona Wrestling Federation “pieces of trash.” (And he told them as much last October after becoming the AWF’s current heavyweight champion.) In other words, he’s totally in need of a comeuppance, which he might get this weekend from the heroic Mike Camden.

The two are scheduled to face off in a title match that will headline the AWF Showdown on Saturday, March 24, at the AWF Arena, 14202 North 73rd Avenue in Peoria. It’s the latest event from the local indie wrestling promotion. It will feature six other bouts, including a matches starring R-Three, Nick Tendo, Jack Jameson, and Sinn Bohdi. Bell time is 6:15 p.m.

General admission is $10 in advance, $13 at the door, and VIP tickets are $15 to $18. See the Arizona Wrestling Federation Facebook page. Benjamin Leatherman

Get the scoop on chicken coops. - TEDD ROUNDY
Get the scoop on chicken coops.
Tedd Roundy
Tour de Coops
Urban farming has been on the rise over the last decade. And plenty of city folk have been growing and showing everything from vegetables and chickens to fruit and flowers. The annual Tour de Coops is a self-guided tour of area hen houses to see what’s clucking. If you’re interested in building your own chicken coop, it’s a great way to get a firsthand look at how Valley dwellers make it work.

Visit some local feathered friends from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 25. Check-in starts at 11:30 a.m. at Blooming Ranch, 25626 North Seventh Avenue. Tickets are $18 to $30, and free for kids 12 and younger. Visit the Facebook event page for complete details. Amy Young

click to enlarge Murder meets comedy. - ADAM SHEEHY
Murder meets comedy.
Adam Sheehy
Small Town Murder
Murder mystery meets comedy on the Small Town Murder podcast. Each episode of the goofy true-crime show focuses on two comedians who research a small town, what makes it tick, and a murder that took place there.
Hosts James Pietragallo and Jimmie Whisman come to Stand Up Live at 7 p.m. on Sunday, March 25, or a live taping of the podcast.

There’s a two-drink minimum for the show at 50 West Jefferson Street. Admission is $20 via the Phoenix Stand Up Live website. Lindsay Roberts

click to enlarge See Joe's Posse by David Manje in "Art of the Ride" at Sky Harbor Airport. - PHOENIX AIRPORT MUSEUM
See Joe's Posse by David Manje in "Art of the Ride" at Sky Harbor Airport.
Phoenix Airport Museum
“Art of the Ride”
In the “Art of the Ride” exhibition at Sky Harbor Airport, Mesa creative David Manje shares a memory alongside an original oil painting.

“I was 14 when my father bought my first motorcycle,” Manje writes. “It ended up a wreck. Yet, I was still lured to the powerful pleasure of the ride and beauty of the machine.”

See that work — alongside others inspired by motorcycles — at the art gallery located on the third floor of Terminal 4, 3400 East Sky Harbor Boulevard. The free exhibition runs through Monday, May 28, and gallery hours are 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Visit the Sky Harbor website. Lynn Trimble

DJ Kim E Fresh
There are only a handful of things better than brunch. As if the bottomless mimosas weren’t sufficient to get us out of bed, Mowry & Cotton’s take on the late-morning meal also includes DJ Kim E Fresh.

From 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 25, she’ll mix funk, disco, hip-hop, and reggae like it’s child’s play at 6000 East Camelback Road in Scottsdale. Food and beverage costs vary, but there’s no cover. See the Mowry & Cotton website for details or call 480-423-2530. Melina Zuñiga
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Jason Keil was the Phoenix New Times culture editor from August 2019 to May 2020.
Contact: Jason Keil
Rob is a Phoenix native, husband, dad, and an active member in the local music scene. He's written original songs for feature films.
Contact: Rob Kroehler
Laura Latzko
Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.
Julie has written for the Night & Day events calendar section since 2005. As a student at Arizona State, she received the Glendon and Kathryn Swarthout Creative Writing Award and the Theatre Medallion of Merit.
Contact: Julie Peterson
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