Star Wars cosplayers, including the best Kylo Ren we saw at Phoenix Comicon.
Star Wars cosplayers, including the best Kylo Ren we saw at Phoenix Comicon. Benjamin Leatherman
Phoenix gets nerdy with it this week. Geek out this week by attending Phoenix Comicon, a stand-up performance by the unofficial nerd king Brian Posehn, or an exploration of butterfly species. For more things to do, see our curated calendar of events.

Phoenix Comicon
Phoenix Comicon is back, ready to fill downtown’s streets with cosplayers and general nerdy hoopla. Before retiring indoors for the summer season, the convention offers opportunities to connect, dress up, and geek out from Thursday, May 25, through Sunday, May 28, at the Phoenix Convention Center, 100 North Third Street.
Attendees can choose from a boatload of panels, vendors, escape rooms, celebrity guests, parties, exhibitors, and events like the Masquerade Costume Contest, the Film Festival, and Talk Nerdy to Me: A Byte of Burlesque. Guests include Dick-freaking-Van Dyke, Alan Tudyk (Firefly, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, and the voice of the Niles Crane-esque K-2SO in Rogue One), Danny Trejo, Curtis Armstrong (a.k.a. Booger), and Anthony Michael Hall.
Tickets range from $20 to $299. Hours for opening day are 9 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Visit the Phoenix Comicon website for the full schedule and lineup. Lauren Cusimano

click to enlarge Nominal exploitation eventually leads to a happy ending in My Man Godfrey. - CHERYL SCHARR
Nominal exploitation eventually leads to a happy ending in My Man Godfrey.
Cheryl Scharr
My Man Godfrey
So far, plays and movies are mostly immune from that whole “no writers” thing that turned TV into a reality-show wonderland during and after the 1988 writers’ strike. Hollywood’s had more than one Golden Age, and a prime example of throwing a Pulitzer-winning author at a movie and watching him stick is Morrie Ryskind’s 1936 screwball comedy My Man Godfrey, in which a homeless dude is scooped up by an heiress for a scavenger hunt, and high jinks ensue, as usual.

Eric K. Hatch’s stage version is presented by Don Bluth Front Row Theatre through Saturday, June 24, at 8670 East Shea Boulevard, #103, in Scottsdale. Showtime is 7 p.m. for the performance on Thursday, May 25, and tickets are $25 at 480-314-0841 or the Don Bluth Front Row Theatre website. Julie Peterson

Old School Skate
Nostalgia alert. During Great Skate Glendale’s Old School Skate, you can relive some of your favorite roller rink memories. DJ Rob Slick will supply the old-school hits, while you attempt to avoid falling while grooving along. The 18-and-over skating night costs $7 per person and takes place at 10054 North 43rd Avenue on Thursday, May 25, from 7:30 to 10 p.m. To find out more, visit the United Skates website. Laura Latzko

All-American Weekend
America’s the land we love for a lot of reasons. There’s the barbecue, the beer, and, of course, the parties. Speaking of which: Hotel Palomar’s Lustre Rooftop Bar will host a downright red, white, and blue Memorial Day bash dubbed the All-American Weekend. From May 26 through 29, the 21-and-over crowd is welcome to sip Tito’s vodka cocktails next to the rooftop pool, chow down on barbecue, and enjoy jams selected by a DJ. So pack those star-spangled bikinis, and get yourself to 2 East Jefferson Street at 11 a.m. on Friday. There is no cover for this weekend bash. Land of the free, indeed. Visit the Lustre Rooftopo Bar website for more information. Lindsay Roberts

click to enlarge Duane Daniels and Doug Waldo call fowl in The Duck Variations. - AMY CARPENTER
Duane Daniels and Doug Waldo call fowl in The Duck Variations.
Amy Carpenter
The Duck Variations
Before moving into the collective consciousness as creator of Glengarry Glen Ross, David Mamet had been churning out plays and screenplays for decades. His first produced work was a double bill of Sexual Perversity in Chicago and The Duck Variations, the latter of which continues through Sunday, May 28, at Space 55 Theatre.

The classic “two guys on a park bench” one-act was presented this time last year, when you might’ve missed it, so celebrate its return at 8 p.m. on Friday, May 26, at 636 East Pierce Street. Stars Duane Daniels and Doug Waldo share their characters’ takes on the forces of nature without scorching your delicate sensibilities with profanity-laced tirades. Tickets are $12 to $15. Visit the Space 55 website. Julie Peterson

click to enlarge See works by Jamie Cordelier, Emily Longbrake, and Lauren Copley at Vision Gallery. - COURTESY OF VISION GALLERY
See works by Jamie Cordelier, Emily Longbrake, and Lauren Copley at Vision Gallery.
Courtesy of Vision Gallery
“Thin Air II: Art from Tech Shop”
What comes to mind when you hear the word “artist”? After seeing this new exhibition in Chandler, it’ll probably be lasers. Artist Lauren Copley uses a computer-guided laser to draw on metal. Emily Longbrake uses lasers to cut paper and wood. Like sculptor Jamie Cordelier, they’re members of a fabrication workshop and studio called TechShop Chandler.

Check out works by all three artists in a free show called “Thin Air II: Art from Tech Shop.” You’ll see Cordelier’s use of geometric forms to explore various cultures, Copley’s alien- and robot-inspired figures, and Longbrake’s take on landscapes and patterns within nature.

It’s happening at Vision Gallery, 10 East Chicago Street, through Friday, June 2. Gallery hours on Thursday, May 25, are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit the Vision Gallery website. Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge Meet puppets. - COURTESY OF PAN PRODUCTIONS
Meet puppets.
Courtesy of Pan Productions
The Goblin King’s City
Remember the 1986 movie Labyrinth? It’s a musical fantasy about a teenage girl navigating a maze to find her brother. It starred David Bowie as Jareth, the Goblin King, and was directed by Muppet master Jim Henson, who also included some of his puppet creations. This isn’t that — but it’s close. The Goblin King’s City is a live musical adaptation of that film, done Phoenix-style.

Pan Productions is at the helm of this reimagined show. They’ve tackled other known musicals, like The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Each leading role is shared by two performers who alternate nights. Local bands Jerusafunk and We Are Hologram perform a version of the score that also includes an original song by area musician and New Times contributor Serene Dominic. Get caught up in this twisty tale at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 26, at The Pressroom, 441 West Madison Street. Admission is $15. Visit the Pan Productions Facebook for information. Amy Young

click to enlarge The Phoenix Caribbean Carnival’s downtown street parade features dancers and bands in traditional clothing. - CARIBBEAN AMERICAN PHOENIX CARNIVAL CULTURAL ASSOCIATION OF ARIZONA
The Phoenix Caribbean Carnival’s downtown street parade features dancers and bands in traditional clothing.
Caribbean American Phoenix Carnival Cultural Association of Arizona
Caribbean Carnival
A single style of music, dance, or dress can’t be used to describe the Caribbean. But Phoenix’s Caribbean Carnival will celebrate the diverse sights and sounds of the islands. The celebration of cultures kicks off on Friday, May 26, at 10 p.m. at Club Palazzo, 710 North Central Avenue, with the International Flag Party, an event where attendees showcase flags from around the world. The festivities will continue at 9 p.m. on Saturday, May 27, at Michael’s at Park Central, 3110 North Central Avenue, with the All White Masquerade Affair featuring live music from “Queen of Soca” Alison Hinds. On Saturday, May 27, people of all ages can experience the flavors of the Caribbean during a street parade with bands, dancers, and spectators decorated in paint and powder. The parade runs from Third Street and Thomas Road to Steele Indian School Park, 300 East Indian School Road. Also slated for Saturday is a Carnival Village at the park, featuring performances from stilt walkers, fire breathers, and Latin and steel drum bands.

Tickets for the All White Masquerade Affair cost $25 at the door, and admission for the Carnival Village is $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and up, and free for children under 12. For more information, go to the Phoenix Carnival website. Laura Latzko

click to enlarge Check out the new location for Roosevelt Growhouse during the next Garden Volunteer Day. - COURTESY OF ROOSEVELT GROWHOUSE.
Check out the new location for Roosevelt Growhouse during the next Garden Volunteer Day.
Courtesy of Roosevelt Growhouse.
Garden Volunteer Day
Ever wish your skill set included gardening? Try learning by doing at Roosevelt Growhouse, 1025 North Second Street, where you don’t need a green thumb to make good things happen. Join fellow volunteers for Garden Volunteer Day between 8 and 11 a.m. on May 27.

It’s a great excuse to play in the dirt while helping beautify a formerly vacant lot. In case you missed it, the Growhouse recently moved to the grounds of the historic Leighton G. Knipe House.

Saturday’s lineup includes spreading mulch and watering plants. And there might be some painting, too. While you’re there, check out a new mural by Isaac Caruso, whose giant sunflowers grace the nearby monOrchid building. Visit the Roosevelt Growhouse Facebook page. Lynn Trimble


In addition to creating a ton of ridiculously killer music in his many years as a celebrity, Prince managed to keep facets of his life out of the public eye. His deep affinity for the color purple, however, was not even close to a secret. The Purple Rain artist often was clad head to toe in the color. So it makes perfect sense that an event honoring his talents would pay homage to his signature shade. The Automatic Response Performance Company’s production Purple tells stories about the musical legend through the art of dance. Performers include Krista Barker, Kaitlyn Conley, Ricky Maalouf, Jose Soto, and Jayar Fernandez. Shows take place at 1 and 7 p.m. on Saturday, May 27, at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Admission is $20. Call 480-499-8587 or visit the Scottsdale Center for Performing Arts website. Amy Young

Read on for more things to do on and around Memorial Day 2017.
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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.
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
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
Michael runs the Sci-Fridays Book Club at the Poisoned Pen, and volunteers at local pop-culture conventions. He can be found at the occasional prog-rock concert.
Contact: Michael Senft
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