Nerd Culture

20 Best Things to Do This Week in Metro Phoenix

Patrons of Bikini Lounge.
Patrons of Bikini Lounge. Benjamin Leatherman
You know that saying about killing two birds with one stone? Well, it could be applied to plenty of events in metro Phoenix this week — including Jazz meets Poetry, Pumpkin Days and Corn Maze, or Pancakes & Booze. Two awesome things in one event. The choice is yours. For more things to do, visit Phoenix New Times' curated calendar.

Calling all Browncoats! Serenity, the cinematic continuation of Joss Whedon’s beloved sci-fi series Firefly, is hitting the big screen again for an out-of-this-world party. (It’s okay to be late to the game. Like the show it’s based on, no one saw the movie the first time around.)

The ragtag crew of the titular spaceship, led by comic-con favorite Nathan Fillion, gets into trouble when they bring aboard a passenger with psychic powers, making them the target of a government tracker who will do anything to capture her.

Aim to misbehave at 7 p.m. on Thursday, September 28, at Alamo Drafthouse Chandler, 4955 South Arizona Avenue. Admission is $12.94 and includes cap guns for you to aim at the screen and your own Serenity ship to navigate. For more information, visit the Alamo Drafthouse website. Jason Keil

Arizona Opera will perform Das Rheingold as part of its 2017-18 season. - CORY WEAVER/MINNESOTA OPERA
Arizona Opera will perform Das Rheingold as part of its 2017-18 season.
Cory Weaver/Minnesota Opera
The Story of Opera in Wine
Wine is, like, the ultimate partner. Obviously, plenty of folks enjoy it on its own, but it often becomes part of a union.
The Story of Opera in Wine will pair vino with education, which can only make you a smarter, happier, and slightly more drunk person. Attendees will tour through opera’s history while enjoying a curated selection of red and white wines from different European wineries. Expect to start the evening by hearing about the origins of opera and Italy, and continue your informational journey from there.

Operatic knowledge is uncorked at 7 p.m. on Thursday, September 28, in the Arizona Opera Atrium, 1636 North Central Avenue. Admission is $20. Call 602-266-7464 or visit the Arizona Opera website. Amy Young

click to enlarge Jazz up your poetry game at The Nash. - LYNN TRIMBLE
Jazz up your poetry game at The Nash.
Lynn Trimble
Jazz Meets Poetry
Some of the Valley’s premier performance poets are taking the stage at The Nash, as part of a new series blending poetry and jazz. It’s a new creative platform for Leah Marché, co-founder of BlackPoet Ventures, who’s working with the Roosevelt Row music venue to explore diverse voices, talents, and styles.

First up for the Jazz Meets Poetry series is a tribute to renowned jazz musicians Miles Davis and Dizzy Gillespie. It’s happening at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 28, at The Nash, 110 East Roosevelt Street. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 the day of the show. Visit the Nash website. Lynn Trimble

Mummy dearest awaits you at Haunted Attractions. - THE CRYPT HAUNTED ATTRACTIONS
Mummy dearest awaits you at Haunted Attractions.
The Crypt Haunted Attractions
2017 Nightmare Edition
If you scare people for a living, it’s important to convince them that this year will be the scariest yet. And although The Crypt Haunted Attractions is great at both being increasingly horrifying and seeming that way, we tell you what, those ghouls and so forth will have to go pretty far if they wanna scare us more than this year has.

Catharsis is healthy, so screaming it out in an appropriate venue sounds almost comforting. However, it won’t be — muah ha ha — as you experience the 2017 Nightmare Edition through Tuesday, October 31, featuring the Crypt, the Asylum, and Chaos Maze, at the possibly actually haunted Fiesta Mall, 1445 West Southern Avenue in Mesa.

Hours on Friday, September 29, are 7 to 10 p.m. Admission is $8 to $35, depending how much you can handle and whether you want to wait in line. Buy advance tickets or ask questions at the Haunted AZ website. Julie Peterson

click to enlarge Who's going to take home the coveted improv prize? - JOSE GONZALEZ
Who's going to take home the coveted improv prize?
Jose Gonzalez
Cerberus Cup
September has five weekends this year. And that can only mean one thing: The local improv community will once again compete for the coveted Cerberus Cup. The tournament begins with three teams made up of three performers skilled in the art of spontaneity battling each other for laughs and your vote. Those with the most votes at the end of the three bouts will duke it out the next night for a cash prize and Cerberus Cup Championship glory.

Cast your vote starting at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, September 29, at The Torch Theatre, 4721 North Central Avenue. Admission for each bout is $10, and a pass for all three bouts for $15. For more information, visit the Torch Theatre website. Jason Keil

click to enlarge High jinks ensue in She Loves Me. - COURTESY OF  DON BLUTH FRONT ROW THEATRE
High jinks ensue in She Loves Me.
Courtesy of Don Bluth Front Row Theatre
She Loves Me
After Sleepless in Seattle, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan starred in You’ve Got Mail. It features two people falling in love on AOL. Old school! The storyline has a rich pedigree, starting with a 1937 Hungarian play, Parfumerie, and evolving through enough stage, screen, and musical versions to choke a horse. The tale of two pen-pal lovers who don’t know they know each other in real life also might have inspired “Escape (The Piña Colada Song).”

The very popular musical version She Loves Me is presented by Don Bluth Front Row Theatre through Saturday, November 4, at 8670 East Shea Boulevard, #103, in Scottsdale. Showtime is 7 p.m. for the performance on Friday, September 29, and tickets are $23 to $25 at 480-314-0841 or the Don Bluth Front Row Theatre website. Julie Peterson

click to enlarge Sometimes a face is the best canvas. - PANCAKES & BOOZE ART SHOW
Sometimes a face is the best canvas.
Pancakes & Booze Art Show
Pancakes & Booze
The flapjacks will be flying again this year, when the Pancakes & Booze art show returns to The Duce, 525 South Central Avenue. It’s a chance to satisfy both your eye for art and your culinary cravings, while mixing it up with fellow Phoenicians.

Event organizers put out the call for local artists, but they haven’t revealed whose work they’re showing. So at this point, there’s no telling what sort of artistic gems you might stumble on during this year’s gathering. Expect live performances, too.

Tickets for the age 21-and-over event start at $7 (for early birds), and the pancakes are free. The show starts at 8 p.m. on Friday, September 29, and runs until 2 a.m. Visit the Pancakes & Booze website. Lynn Trimble

Salvage Yard
During junking excursions, nothing is more exhilarating than finding a piece to complete a project or add to a collection. During the Salvage Yard at Rusty Saturday on Saturday, September 30, you can become a picker like Mike Wolfe or Frank Fritz.

The monthly sale, held in a warehouse behind the store, has a variety of rustic, vintage, industrial, antique, and repurposed items, including furniture, home decor, and spare project parts.

Founded by three self-proclaimed “junkers,” the warehouse sale caters to homeowners working on DIY projects and shoppers looking for vintage items to decorate with.

The monthly event runs from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 12815 North Cave Creek Road. For more information, visit the Facebook event page. Laura Latzko

Newbie Night
Just because Phoenix New Times has teamed up with Tempe’s Coyotes Curling Club, 2202 West Medtronic Way, for the upcoming Newbie Night doesn’t necessarily mean that getting a perm is officially back in style. No, this is the other type of curling. Not the kind you do at the gym — the other, other type of curling.

It’s the sport that may or may not inadvertently have been invented when a bunch of drunk medieval Scots discovered that it was safer to slide large stones, rather than attempt to hurl them, over bodies of frozen water. Now, curling is an Olympic sport, and the Valley’s premier curling club is inviting you to put your stones on ice, so to speak.

Give it a shot at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 30. The 18-and-over event is $20. Visit the Coyotes Curling website or call 480-447-4559 for details. Rob Kroehler

Paul Rodriguez and Joey Medina
Paul Rodriguez and Joey Medina changed the comedy scene by giving voice to the Mexican-American experience on an international level. Their appearances on The Original Latin Kings of Comedy special helped cement their position as two of the top Latino comedians in the stand-up world.

The veteran comedians will perform on Saturday, September 30, as part of the Return of the Latin Kings of Comedy show at Comerica Theatre, 400 West Washington Street. The star-studded lineup will also feature Willie Barcena, a regular on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno; Johnny A. Sanchez, a former cast member on MADtv; and Dennis Gaxiola, a top-tier clean comic.

Tickets start at $25 for the 8 p.m. show. For more information, call 602-379-2800 or visit the Comerica Theatre website. Laura Latzko

Read on for more of the best things to do in metro Phoenix this week.

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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
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