Splash Down

Head south toward Tucson and, as you come upon Maricopa Road, you'll encounter a body of water that laughs out loud when you call its next-door neighbor, the I-10, a freeway. It's known to locals as Firebird Lake, and this weekend boats that know nothing about sailing and everything about flying will prove that it's all about the fast lane at the IHBA Coors Light World Finals, Thursday, November 18, through Sunday, November 21, at Firebird International Raceway, 20000 South Maricopa Road in Chandler. More than 13 different classes of jet-powered boats skim the surface at breakneck speeds as high as 230 mph for the season-ending event that also includes a midway with manufacturers' displays and IHBA merchandise, and a Kids Zone featuring interactive displays, inflatables, and water games. Gates open at 7 a.m. Friday through Sunday. Advance tickets are $10 to $31, with children 12 and under free. Call 602-268-0200 or visit -- Craig Wallach

Aw, Shoot

Go ahead, make your day

C'mon, hit 'em with your best shot -- courtesy of the government. That's right, the government. The Hunting and Shooting Sports Showcase at Ben Avery Shooting Facility is a two-day free clinic to treat anyone plagued with the shooting bug, sponsored by the Arizona Game and Fish Department. This Saturday, November 20, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, November 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., test-fire the latest guns, bag tips on animal behavior, and review the rules of firearms and hunting safety. Admission to the showcase is free, and the $5 parking fee bags a future pass to the range. Ben Avery Shooting Facility, where we gun nuts take a powder from tedium, hunkers down at 4044 West Black Canyon Boulevard (on the north side of Carefree Highway, just west of I-17). For more information, call 623-582-8313 or visit -- Kim Toms

Birdies for Birdies

Get it in the hole at the 500 Club

Sat 11/20
We sympathize with a nasty golf addiction. But does all that pristine desert and precious water consumed by the links bother you more than a missed four-foot putt? Attempt to absolve your sins by playing in the second annual Fore the Wildlife Golf Tournament, on Saturday November 20, at the 500 Club, 4707 West Pinnacle Peak Road. The $100 entry fee benefits Arizona Game and Fish's Wildlife Center, which rehabilitates injured wildlife. Some of the center's exhibit animals will be on display at the tournament, which may be the closest most players come to seeing an eagle all day. Most important, the tournament's scramble format allows your errant golf shots to be quickly forgotten. Tee time is 8 a.m. Call 623-582-9008 or see -- Douglas Towne

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