Nerd Culture

The Best Things to Do in Phoenix This Weekend

Public art goes big with Reflection Rising at Canal Convergence.
Public art goes big with Reflection Rising at Canal Convergence. Scottsdale Public Art
What are you doing this weekend? Let us show you. Hang out with the viciously funny Margaret Cho, learn about the darker side of Disney during A Public Reading of an Unproduced Screenplay About the Death of Walt Disney, or get an inside look at the homes of the Coronado neighborhood. For more things to do, visit Phoenix New Times' calendar.

Canal Convergence
Light up your night on Friday, February 23, when Scottsdale Public Art launches Canal Convergence. It’s a four-day event filled with light-based art installations along the Scottsdale Waterfront, bordered on one side by the intersection of Scottsdale and Camelback roads. The free Friday night kickoff runs from 4 to 10 p.m., and includes chances to meet participating artists, take part in hands-on workshops, and catch performances.

Highlights will include the launch of Choi + Shine Architects’ ARIZONA! project, which will premiere during the next Canal Convergence in November, and an artist talk with members of the France-based experimental light and design group Collectif Coin. Workshops include creating artifacts with Barter Boat and printing your own merch with Eli Richard. The performance lineup includes music, dance, and storytelling. And that’s just the Friday night short list.

Canal Convergence continues on Saturday, February 24, and the following weekend. See the complete schedules at the Canal Convergence website. Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge Meet the All-American Girl herself. - ALBERT SANCHEZ
Meet the All-American Girl herself.
Albert Sanchez
Margaret Cho
Margaret Cho fans know her stand-up is about as far from Republican Party politics as you can get. But that didn’t stop the Arizona GOP from using a still from the comedian’s groundbreaking 1994 sitcom All-American Girl on its chapter website. According to Vice News, the image was used to illustrate that the party would never single out a particular race for special favors or privileges. The picture was quickly removed after its origins were pointed out.

Luckily, Cho hasn’t gone anywhere. She says her vicious new tour, Fresh Off The Bloat, is about coming back to life after her struggles with drugs, drinking, and attempting suicide.

Laugh along when Cho performs at 7:30 and 10 p.m. on Friday, February 23, at Stand Up Live, 50 West Jefferson Street. Admission is $32, and there’s a two-drink minimum. For more information, visit the Stand Up Live website. Jason Keil

A Celebration of Science and Reason
It’s a night of educated conversation and book signings at A Celebration of Science and Reason. Sam Harris and Lawrence Krauss are two of the night’s three speakers. Both are respected scientists and authors. Joining them is Matt Dillahunty, who hosts the Texas-based call-in show The Atheist Experience. What’s interesting about that, in particular, is that Dillahunty was once a southern Baptist minister, who, via scientific exploration, went down a nonreligious road. Together, this trio will explore topics like how we can all become more scientifically literate.

The sound-off on science starts at 8 p.m. on Friday, February 23, at Comerica Theatre, 400 West Washington Street. Tickets are $28 to $104. Premium tickets allow fast-pass access to the post-show book signing. Call 602-379-2800 or visit the Comerica Theatre website. Amy Young

click to enlarge It's spring training season. - JIM LOUVAU
It's spring training season.
Jim Louvau
Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Colorado Rockies
The Arizona Diamondbacks will enter spring training — which is already here, by the way — with some unanswered questions surrounding the team’s opening day roster. However, the franchise’s rising payroll has made one thing perfectly clear: They want to win now.

Given the somewhat surprising success of last season, the Snakes are all in on building momentum rather than rebuilding. Yet with the price tag on slugger J.D. Martinez being too high, the main question becomes who the team can afford to fill Martinez’ sizable cleats. Regardless, Arizona has enough depth in their pitching rotation and on offense to repeat last season’s play.

Arizona kicks off the Cactus League season with a game against the Colorado Rockies at 1:10 p.m. on Friday, February 23, at Scottsdale’s Salt River Fields, 7555 North Pima Road. Tickets are $21 and up. Visit the Cactus League website or call 480-270-5000 for details. Rob Kroehler

Storme Sundberg as the daughter and Matt Zimmerer as Walt Disney. - CHRISTOPHER HAINES
Storme Sundberg as the daughter and Matt Zimmerer as Walt Disney.
Christopher Haines
A Public Reading of an Unproduced Screenplay About the Death of Walt Disney
“I’m Walt Disney. This is a screenplay I wrote. It’s about me.” So begins A Public Reading of an Unproduced Screenplay About the Death of Walt Disney, written by Lucas Hnath and produced locally by the iTheatre Collaborative. The dark drama portrays the creative genius — who gave us Mickey Mouse and expensive amusement parks — as a drunk, controlling, egotistical executive obsessed with living forever … literally. In other words, do not take the kids.

Check your id at the door. Showtime is 8 p.m. on Friday, February 23, on the Kax Stage at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe Street. Tickets are $12 to $25. For more information, visit the Herberger Theater website. Jason Keil

click to enlarge Mapping Lines by Tiffany Bailey, a host for this year's Ceramic Studio Tour. - TIFFANY BAILEY/LYNN TRIMBLE
Mapping Lines by Tiffany Bailey, a host for this year's Ceramic Studio Tour.
Tiffany Bailey/Lynn Trimble
Ceramic Studio Tour
Typically, people only see the finished product, but creating ceramic art is messy business. Once each year, art lovers get the chance to go behind the scenes during the Ceramic Studio Tour presented by the ASU Art Museum’s Ceramics Research Center.

The two-day event starts on Saturday, February 24, when you can visit more than a dozen studios throughout the Valley between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. It’s a free self-guided tour, so you can set your own pace and visit any or all the open studios. Tour sites also include a trio of venues showing exhibitions.

A dozen artists are hosting studio visits, and others will present demonstrations and discuss their work. Hosts include Tiffany Bailey, who currently has a solo exhibition at Mesa Contemporary Arts Center. For details, visit the ASU Art Museum website. Lynn Trimble

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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