Nerd Culture

Best Things to Do This Weekend: Beer Olympics, Hip-Hop Burlesque, Deon Cole

Speak from your heart in English, Spanish, or both.
Speak from your heart in English, Spanish, or both. Lynn Trimble
It's the freaking weekend, Phoenix. We'll drink to that. This weekend you can compete in the Beer Olympics, check out the hip-hop burlesque, and take in the art at “Xico Retrospective: A Celebration of 20 Years." For more things to do, visit New Times' curated calendar.

Beer Olympics
How much do you like beer? Tempe Marketplace and New Times are teaming up to throw one of the sudsiest events of the year, the Beer Olympics.

The brew-fueled event returns on Friday, August 18. Participants can enjoy an evening of 21-and-over games including giant beer pong, flip cup, and cornhole. The event runs from 8 to 11 p.m.

General admission tickets start at $15. If you want to compete as part of a team, you and your pals can register as a group of four or more for $70. Tickets are available at TicketFly. Visit New Times' Beer Olympics website for more information. Lindsay Roberts

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Bump n’ Grind — A Hip Hop Burlesque Spectacular will move you.
Courtesy of Stateside Presents
Bump n’ Grind — A Hip-Hop Burlesque Spectacular
Name generators have gotten out of hand — although the one that gives you your NPR correspondent name is eerily perfect. But before we had rules for things like our porn star names (Freckles Lane), we had homegrown drag names and their near cousin, stripper — uh, burlesque performer — names. So fun!

Hence our delight to discover that Irma Gherd, along with several other performers, will uncover, shake, and wiggle at Bump n’ Grind — A Hip-Hop Burlesque Spectacular on Friday, August 18, at Crescent Ballroom. Diamond Femme Productions combines your favorite hip-hop tracks with steamy, undulating women for a memorable evening.

At 308 North Second Avenue, doors will open at 7 p.m. to let you enjoy some music before things warm up. Admission’s $10 in advance, $15 at the door, and limited to folks 21 and older. Reserved tables are already sold out. Call 602-716-2222 or visit the Crescent Ballroom website. Julie Peterson

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Goth, fetish, and drag encouraged.
Melissa Fossum
Forget the single-serving dessert. Cupcake! is a south Scottsdale monthly fetish-themed dance party.
The elektro, industrial, EDM, darkwave, and bass-heavy party features resident DJs Self.Destrukt, Betty Blackheart, and ///she/// — as well as a themed photo booth, roaming photography and video, a best-dressed contest, a no-pants dance-off, go-go dancers, giveaways, and drink specials. Fetish, drag, goth, or just dark clothing in general is encouraged.

Darkness rules from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Friday, August 18, at The Rogue Bar, 423 North Scottsdale Road. Entry is $6 or free before 10 p.m. with a RSVP from the Facebook Event page. Call 602-733-3208 for more information. Lauren Cusimano

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Ironing Las Guayaveras II by Frank Ybarra.
Courtesy of Xico Arte y Cultura
Xico Retrospective: A Celebration of 20 Years"
With careers spanning two decades in the Valley’s creative scene, artists Martin Moreno and Joe Ray are in a league of their own. But they’re also part of Xico Arte y Cultura, 1008 East Buckeye Road, Suite 220. The multidisciplinary arts group was founded by Native American and Chicano artists in 1975.

See work from the group’s permanent collection during the free opening reception for “Xico Retrospective: A Celebration of 20 Years,” which takes place from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, August 18. The show includes diverse print media from serigraphs to woodcuts, with works that explore politics, pain, heritage, and understanding.
Featured artists include Damien Charette, Baje Whitethorne, Randy Kemp, Larry Yanez, and Dora Hernandez, to name a few. Visit the Xico Inc website. Lynn Trimble

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Laugh with Black-ish actor Deon Cole
Ashley Brown
Deon Cole
Considering how well a bet worked out for comedian and actor Deon Cole, you might wanna lean toward responding affirmatively the next time someone proposes, “I’ll give you $50 if you …”

In his case, a friend offered to pony up that amount if Cole — known for keeping his pals in stitches — would take the stage at an amateur comedy night. In addition to earning a chunk of pocket change, the comedian started a career that has led to some pretty big gigs, like appearances on popular comedy TV shows Black-ish and Angie Tribeca.

Cole gives his take on personal and universal issues during shows at 7:30 and 10 p.m. on Friday, August 18, at Stand Up Live, 50 West Jefferson Street. Admission is $22 for the 21-and-older event. Seating is first-come, first-served. All tickets require a two-drink minimum. Call 480-719- 6100 or visit the Stand Up Live website. Amy Young

Will and Grace
 Trivia Night

Can’t wait for the new season of Will and Grace? Get an early fix at Kobalt Bar, 3110 North Central Avenue, when the nightlife spot hosts Will and Grace trivia night at 6 p.m. on Saturday, August 19. Fans of Karen, Jack, and company can expect a challenge with progressively harder questions, some of which will include video clips.

Kobalt will pay homage to the hit sitcom with special Karen Cocktails, character-themed prize baskets, and T-shirt giveaways. The cost of entry is $15 for teams of up to four people, and $5 for individuals. Proceeds from the event will go to the Omaggio LGBTQ Youth Chorus. For more information, call 602-264-5307 or go the Facebook event page. Laura Latzko

Read on for more of the best things to do in metro Phoenix this weekend, including Poesia en Voz Alta, a Pre-Eclipse Party, and Church.

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Watch the game in all its inconsequential preseason glory on NBC.
Jim Louvau
Arizona Cardinals v. Chicago Bears
Pointing out that the NFL is far and away the nation’s most beloved professional sports league isn’t exactly earth-shattering news at this point. Even the league’s Hall of Fame Game — a meaningless exhibition game that took place earlier this month between the Cardinals and Cowboys — drew better television ratings than the MLB and NBA could dream of under similar circumstances. Couple that information with the fact that there’s no dearth of Chicago transplants living in the Valley (hello, Lou Malnati’s), and the upcoming Arizona Cardinals preseason game against the Chicago Bears on Saturday, August 19, is downright front-page news. Not willing to pony up $41 or more to catch the 7 p.m. game live at Glendale’s University of Phoenix Stadium, 1 Cardinals Drive? No worries, you can watch the game in all its inconsequential preseason glory on NBC, because football. For details, visit the Arizona Cardinals website or call 623-433-7101. Rob Kroehler

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Speak from your heart in English, Spanish, or both.
Lynn Trimble
Poesia en Voz Alta
Calling all bilingual storytellers and poets, Spanish speakers, and lovers of languages.

On Saturday, August 19, the microphone at Palabras will be open to all for Poesia en Voz Alta, or “poetry in high voice.” From 7 to 9 p.m., ven a disfrutar de una noche de poesía y letras or, ahem, come enjoy a night of poetry and storytelling. Tell your story, read your poems, or just listen at 1738 East McDowell Road. Admission is free. For more information, visit the Facebook event page. Lindsay Roberts

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Partial eclipse of the heart.
Gustaaf Prins via Flickr/CC
Pre-Eclipse Party
It isn’t a party without some Corona, right? But don’t expect ice-cold cervezas with a wedge of lime at the Pre-Eclipse Party at the Arizona Museum of Natural History. The corona at this party refers to the outer atmosphere of the sun, which will be visible during the total solar eclipse taking place on Monday, August 21. The family-friendly celebration on Saturday, August 19, will prepare you for this rare celestial event. The museum is working with Arizona State University to put together some festivities that are out of this world. You can learn about telescopes, pinhole-camera viewers, and life in alien worlds. And you can make your own model eclipse.

This educational and interactive event starts at 1 p.m. at 53 North Macdonald in Mesa. The party is free with the price of museum admission, which is $12 for adults. For more information, visit the Arizona Museum of Natural History website. Jason Keil

Get into an Altered State.
Melissa Fossum
Altered States
For some, a sensory deprivation tank means going to one of those floatation spas for a closed-in, saltwater soak to achieve inner peace. The main character in Altered States, a sci-fi horror flick from 1980, had a more intense experience.

Cinemania is a new monthly series hosted by Dan Stone of the Unfathomable Film Freakout. Stone presents the movie, starring William Hurt as a Harvard scientist who adds LSD to his tank stints to unlock his consciousness. His curiosity leads him down a rabbit hole of physical and psychedelic experimentation that ultimately results in, well — just watch the movie.

Altered States screens at 10 p.m. on Saturday, August 19, at FilmBar, 815 North Second Street. Admission is $9. Call 602-595-9187 or visit the FilmBar website. Amy Young

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James Galanos, Jacket and dress, 1988. Silk crepe and lace with bead embroidery. Gift of Mr. James G. Galanos. Center: James Galanos, Dress, 1955. Silk chiffon. Gift of Mareen Allen Nichols. Right: James Galanos, Dress, 1987. Lace, silk matelassé and silk taffeta. Gift of Mr. James G. Galanos.
Ken Howie

“A Tribute to James Galanos”

Singer Diana Ross and former first lady Nancy Reagan had at least one thing in common. Both women wore dresses designed by James Galanos, a designer born in Philadelphia in 1924 whose parents emigrated from Greece. His other clients? Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Grace Kelly, and Marilyn Monroe.

See more than 40 of his couture-quality, ready-to-wear ensembles and accessories created from the 1950s through the 1990s from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, August 20, at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Avenue. They’re part of a retrospective exhibition called “A Tribute to James Galanos,” which continues through Sunday, January 7, 2018.

Featured pieces come from private collections and the museum’s fashion design archive, which includes more than 7,000 objects, including designs Galanos gifted to the museum in 1990. The exhibition is free with museum admission, which is $18 for adults. Visit the Phoenix Art Museum website. Lynn Trimble

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Swap wedding ideas, and learn calligraphy.
Yara Khalaf of Sincerely Yara
Cocktails + Calligraphy
Getting married? In a bridal party? Really enjoy penmanship? Need a drink? These are all good reasons to attend Cocktails + Calligraphy, an upcoming workshop hosted by They Call Me Spindles, The Marry Mart, and Couple of Bartenders.

This wedding workshop offers up ideas, trends, and techniques for the big day, with a focus on calligraphy projects and creating impressive cocktails. The event is ideal for a morning with the maid of honor, the whole bridal party, yourself, your mom, whomever.

Cocktails + Calligraphy runs from 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday, August 20, at the Gather Estate (an urban backyard-style event venue), 2600 East Southern Avenue in Mesa. Tickets are $5 at the Marry Mart website. For more details, see the Facebook event page. Lauren Cusimano

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Lamar Crushin performing.
Aaron Trujillo
Church doesn’t have to involve hymnals and pews. On the third Sunday of every month, the Sky Lounge hosts Church, a 21-and-over club night for members of the hip-hop scene to congregate, listen to music, and network. The next installment on Sunday, August 20, will feature performances from Marley B, a Tucson recording artist who has opened for E-40, Tech N9ne, and Big Boi, and Valley hip-hop artists Eddie Wellz, Ardy Reapz, and Tru Vonne. Throughout the night, DJ Aaron Michael will keep the energy going with top mainstream hits. Church starts at 10 p.m. at 132 East Washington Street, and admission is $10. For more information, go to the Facebook event page. Laura Latzko
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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.
Jason Keil was the Phoenix New Times culture editor from August 2019 to May 2020.
Contact: Jason Keil
Laura Latzko
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