The Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Week

Bike rides pair well with post-cycling beers.EXPAND
Bike rides pair well with post-cycling beers.
Lynn Trimble
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Get ready film nerds, this week you can see the iconic sci-fi satire Starship Troopers, dress up as your favorite horror movie antagonist at Mad Monster Arizona, or have a chat with Back to the Future's Christopher Lloyd. For more things to do, visit Phoenix New Times' calendar.

“Bikes, Balcony & Beers”
First rule of summer cycling: Avoid the heat by riding late in the day. Second rule: Down a cold one after you finish. It’s easily done with a free community bike ride called “Bikes, Balcony & Beers,” which starts at Crescent Ballroom, 308 North Second Avenue, at 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 12. Cyclists at all levels will head out for a 45- to 60-minute ride through downtown Phoenix, before heading back to enjoy conversation and discounts on cold drinks and hot burritos. It’s presented with Slippery Pig Bike Shop, which promises no pigs get harmed in the process. Visit the Crescent Ballroom website. Lynn Trimble

Check out Tilt Gallery during this week's Scottsdale ArtWalk.EXPAND
Check out Tilt Gallery during this week's Scottsdale ArtWalk.
Lynn Trimble

Summer Spectacular Art Walk
There’s an actual art walk line you can follow on Old Town sidewalks in Scottsdale, but nobody says you have to do it. Instead, just head to Marshall Way or Main Street near East Indian School Road, where you can bounce in and out of galleries in any order you like during the free Summer Spectacular Art Walk, presented by the Scottsdale Gallery Association from 6:30 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, July 12. Expect misted sidewalks, live music featuring a Caribbean twist, Hawaiian shaved ice with adult flavors, and plenty of art in diverse media and styles. Visit the Scottsdale Galleries website. Lynn Trimble

The clean comedian Nate Bargatze.
The clean comedian Nate Bargatze.
Courtesy of Brillstein Entertainment Partners

Nate Bargatze
Marc Maron considers stand-up Nate Bargatze a friend, which is ironic when you think about it. Bargatze is a clean comedian who delivers punchlines with his smooth Tennessee drawl. The notoriously cranky Maron, on the other hand, hosts the popular podcast WTF (guess what the last letter stands for) and can be a little crude. If the frequent The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon guest can soften the heart of comedy’s biggest curmudgeon, then Bargatze might be the funnyman we need in these troubling times.

The show begins at 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 12, at StandUp Live, 50 West Jefferson Street, with additional shows through July 14. Tickets are $22 with a two-drink minimum. For more information, visit the StandUp Live website. Jason Keil

Ah! real monsters.EXPAND
Ah! real monsters.
Benjamin Leatherman

Mad Monster Arizona
In the pantheon of horror films, villains don’t come any more sinister than A Nightmare on Elm Street’s Freddy Krueger or Friday the 13th’s Jason Voorhees. Both are evil personified with a boundless bloodlust and taste for offing teenyboppers.

Thankfully, neither Robert Englund nor Kane Hodder, the respective stars behind the slasher icons, are anything like their characters, which should be good news for attendees of this year’s Mad Monster Arizona. Both actors will be special guests of the three-day convention, which fittingly kicks off on Friday, July 13, and goes through Sunday, July 15, at the We-Ko-Pa Resort, 10438 North Fort McDowell Road in Scottsdale.

The annual event is aimed at fans of the horror genre, as well as all things spooky and scary, with three days of panels, programming, vendors, costume contests, and other freaky fun. Single-day admission is $25-$35 in advance and $60 for the whole “shriekend.” VIP tickets are $199 and photo ops are available for an additional cost. Hours vary. Visit the Mad Monster website for details. Benjamin Leatherman

Panel of Psychics
Experiencing lackluster energy? Feeling anxious about what the future holds for you in terms of love, life, and money? It couldn’t hurt to consult a few of the Valley’s resident psychics. On Friday, July 13, Vision Quest Metaphysical Bookstore is hosting a panel of psychics from 7 to 9 p.m. who can answer your questions about the future and psychic abilities. They’re also offering free healing sessions. Admission is $15 — a small price to pay for spiritual rejuvenation. Your gateway to the metaphysical realm is located at 3114 East Indian School Road. For more info, visit the Vision Quest Bookstore website or call 480-949-1888. Joe Flaherty

Uptown Funk Tribute
Bruno Mars has brought a different flavor by intermixing modern beats with ’80s and ’90s funk, R&B, and pop sounds. On Friday, July 13, at the Marquee Theatre, 730 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, the Uptown Funk Tribute to Bruno Mars band will bring music, looks and choreography inspired by the pop singer. The six-person band, which includes a lead singer who looks and sounds like Bruno Mars, tries to create an authentic, interactive experience similar to a Mars concert. Fans can expect to hear hit songs as well as deep cuts. Local singer-songwriter Jennie Johnson and the School of Rock Sugar Skulls teen band will open the show. The event starts at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $20 to $35. For more information, go to the Marquee Theatre website. Laura Latzko

Christopher Lloyd as Dr. Emmett L. Brown in Back to the Future.EXPAND
Christopher Lloyd as Dr. Emmett L. Brown in Back to the Future.
Courtesy of Mills Entertainment

“Christopher Lloyd Goes Back to the Future”
Last month, geeks everywhere felt jigawatts of glee after word surfaced that a fourth Back to the Future film was (great Scott!) finally being made. Their excitement faded away faster than a McFly family photo, however, when the news turned out to be a hoax.

While it was heavy revelation for BTTF fans, the upshot is that it demonstrated how countless folks are eager to see a souped-up DeLorean travel through time once again. And Christopher Lloyd is one of ’em.

The iconic actor, who portrayed Doctor Emmett L. Brown in the series, says he’s up for another go at playing the eccentric scientist. “I’d love to be in a fourth film, if they could come up with the right idea that extends the story and does it as well as the first three,” Lloyd says.

He’s likely to discuss the subject further during his appearance at the Orpheum Theatre, 203 West Adams Street, on Saturday, July 14, for “Christopher Lloyd Goes Back to the Future,” a geek event featuring a screening of the first film followed by a storytelling session/Q&A with the actor.

Go back in time starting at 7 p.m. General admission is $49-$99 and VIP package, which includes a photo op with Lloyd, is $149. See the Ticketforce website. Benjamin Leatherman

Christmas in July
Even a wool-suited North Pole-guy like Santa Claus deserves a break from ice, snow, and reindeer, especially if it’s to kick off the 12th annual Christmas in July celebration from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 14, in Catlin Court shopping district in Historic Downtown Glendale. Check in for your visit and get an activity list at the “North Pole” setup at Arizona Doll and Toy Museum, 5847 West Myrtle Avenue, then take advantage of all the ops for shopping, sweet treats, and free activities. Don’t forget to have a photo taken with Jolly Old St. Nick — after all, he’s traveling nearly 4,000 miles to bask in Arizona sunshine.

Parking is free throughout the downtown and in the city garage. Visit the Facebook event page or call 623-930-7303 for more information. Deb Van Tassel

Devon Leal Bridgewater
By day, Devon Leal Bridgewater is a mild-mannered, bespectacled history teacher at Arizona State University and Phoenix College. At night, he takes off the glasses and becomes Jazzman, one of the Phoenix scene’s premier hornblowers and fiddle players for the past three decades. The Harvard-trained musician plays trumpet, cornet, flugelhorn, and violin. He has toured internationally and even appeared on FoodNation with Bobby Flay. He’s also working his doctoral dissertation at ASU. Bridgewater and New Nuance, with Eric Bart on guitar and Selwyn Reams on bass, will perform at The Nash, 110 East Roosevelt Street, on Saturday, July 14, at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $10 for students and $20 for everyone who’s not in school. Visit the Nash website. Stuart Warner

See artist Robert Gentile in his element.EXPAND
See artist Robert Gentile in his element.
Lynn Trimble

Grand Avenue Tour
Get a new perspective on historic Grand Avenue, with a guided tour that’ll take you behind the scenes at a trio of artist studios — along with the studio for Fushicho Daiko drumming, where you’ll experience a live performance. It’s happening from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 14. Tickets are $15. The tour starts at Grand ArtHaus, 1501 Grand Avenue, where Robert Gentile creates work influenced by his New York City graffiti roots. Participating artists also include self-taught realist painter Ashwini Bharathula and Amanda Adkins, whose paintings channel folklore and fairy tales. The tour is presented by Artlink. Visit the Artlink website. Lynn Trimble

Catch Marshall Shore sharing Phoenix lore.
Catch Marshall Shore sharing Phoenix lore.
Photo: Miachelle D Photography

History Underground: Obscure Anecdotes of Phoenix Events
Revel in Phoenix lore as Marshall Shore, best known as Arizona’s hip historian, recounts obscure anecdotes from the city’s past. First up is the tale of notorious murderess Winnie Ruth Judd, whose saga inspired the art you’ll see above the bar inside the Rose Room at Valley Bar, 130 North Central Avenue. What comes next is anyone’s guess, during History Underground: Obscure Anecdotes of Phoenix Events. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. for the 6 p.m. event, which will only set you back $5 before drinks. While you’re there, ask Shore what $5 might have bought you back in the day. Visit the Valley Bar website. Lynn Trimble

Up your Arizona music I.Q.
Up your Arizona music I.Q.
Musical Instrument Museum

Experience Arizona Music Weekend
Explore the roots of Arizona’s diverse musical landscape as the Musical Instrument Museum, 4725 East Mayo Boulevard, presents day two of its Experience Arizona Music weekend, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, July 15. It’s free with general museum admission, which is $20. The Sunday lineup includes Native American and Mexican folkloric music performance, talks by artists and the museum’s curator for North America, Arizona songs and stories, performance by local music students, and a make-your-own maraca craft. There’s even a photo booth, complete with costumes and props you can borrow to set the scene. Visit the Musical Instrument Museum website. Lynn Trimble

More skate documentary, less murder on a golf course.EXPAND
More skate documentary, less murder on a golf course.
The Orchard

Blood and Steel: Cedar Crest Country Club
Despite what the title may suggest, Blood and Steel: Cedar Crest Country Club is not about a murder on a golf course. It is a documentary about a revolution that took place during the late ’80s in the woods of an affluent neighborhood in Centreville, Virginia. An underground community grew around a beautiful steel skate ramp as the bands in Washington, D.C., punk scene (Fugazi and Bad Brains, to name a few) would play live to accompany the skaters. It became a worldwide phenomenon, drawing the likes of Tony Hawk and Bucky Lasek.

Jump on your deck and get some air at 8 p.m. on Sunday, July 15, at FilmBar, 815 North Second Street. Admission is $9.95. For more information, visit the FilmBar website. Jason Keil

Parkour Camp
Are your kids bouncing off the walls while trapped indoors by the heat? Unleash their energy on parkour camp for three days and watch those skills take off. Scottsdale Gymnastics and Trampoline offers half-day ($175) and full-day ($225) camp for kids aged 7-17 beginning at 9 a.m. Monday, July 16, through Wednesday, July 18. The price includes three days of jumping, crawling, climbing, strength-building, obstacle-overcoming and other Spider-Man training. Kids are separated by age and skill level. Call 480- 951-0496 or visit Scottsdale Gymnastics website for more information. Ray Stern

Make yarn your new best friend.
Make yarn your new best friend.
Facebook/Tempe Yarn

Learn to Knit Class
It’s been a good six months since you resolved to decrease the stress in your life, right? It’s not too late, especially now that summer is upon us and you can spare a little extra time for a relaxing new hobby. Tempe Yarn, 1415 East University Drive, can help with that. They’ve got a Learn to Knit class happening from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, July 16. It costs $35, and you need to bring your own supplies. If you love it, you can sign up for more classes. That’ll really leave your friends in stitches. Visit the Tempe Yarn website. Lynn Trimble

The Banker’s Wife
When your husband’s plane, bound for Geneva, disappears, cracking into his laptop and client list seems fair game. Annabel Lerner is the one doing some investigating, as the main character in The Banker’s Wife, Cristina Alger’s new thriller set in the world of big finance. It doesn’t take long for her to find out that her hubby had some powerful enemies that may have helped with his demise. Ambitious reporter Marina Tourneau gets involved to uncover more of the scoop.

Grab a copy and get it signed by the author from 7 to 8 p.m. on Monday, July 16, at The Poisoned Pen, 4014 North Goldwater Boulevard, in Scottsdale. Admission is free; books for the signing are $27. Call 480-947-2974 or visit the Poisoned Pen website. Amy Young

Starship Troopers
In an article in The Guardian, director Paul Verhoeven described his film Starship Troopers as “a movie about fascists who aren’t aware of their fascism.” This is why one of the most shocking images in the sci-fi satire does not come from an alien bug exploding, but from Neil Patrick Harris walking onscreen in a costume resembling an SS uniform. But if seeing insects blow up is your thing, the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Chandler will have a Q and A session with one of the film’s visual effects artist, Robert Diepenbrock, after the screening.

Would you like to know more? Sign up at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 17, at 4955 South Arizona Avenue. Tickets are $7.55. Visit the Alamo Drafthouse website for more information. ?Jason Keil

Doesn't everybody write one?
Doesn't everybody write one?
Julian Rosefeldt, Manifesto, 2015 © Julian Rosefeldt and VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

For some people, art rules. For others, not so much. Whatever camp you’re in, you’ll likely find something worth thinking and talking about in the film Manifesto. It’s basically a tour of 20th-century art movements, undertaken with actress Cate Blanchett as she assumes the identities of 13 different people, including a puppeteer, factory worker, choreographer, and school teacher. You’ll leave knowing the difference between Fluxus and Dada, and better equipped to ponder art’s role in society. See the film for $5 at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Avenue, at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18. Visit the Phoenix Art Museum website. Lynn Trimble

'80s music, with a love story for added effect.EXPAND
'80s music, with a love story for added effect.
Lynn Trimble

Valley Girl
If you traveled back to the 1980s, you’d find a new drug called Prozac and the first Mac computer. But you’d also stumble on a film called Valley Girl, which pairs a suburban girl with a boy from the wrong side of the tracks.

Best to stay in the now, perhaps, where you can see how it plays out at FilmBar, 815 North Second Street.
They’ll show the comedy, complete with ’80s lingo and tunes, at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18. Tickets are $10, and part of the proceeds will go to the CO+HOOTS Foundation that fosters equity through entrepreneurship. Visit the FilmBar website. Lynn Trimble

When you need more star power.
When you need more star power.

To the Edge of the Universe and Everything in Between
Ever promised someone the sun, moon and stars? Make good on that deal at the Marston Exploration Theater on ASU’s Tempe campus, where you can check out a 3-D astronomy show at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18.

You’ll find the theater on the first floor of the Interdisciplinary Science and Technology Building, 781 Terrace Mall. Tickets are $7.50. That night, the show is a “live, narrated journey from earth to the cosmic background radiation” titled To the Edge of the Universe and Everything in Between. Fair warning: You might develop a burning desire to buy a telescope afterwards. Visit the ASU Event page. Lynn Trimble

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