Things to Do

The Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Week

The Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Week
HDE Agency

Get ready for the best week ever. You can craft a greeting card at Holiday or Any Day Star Cards, get inspired at Felt Wreath Class, or sample delicious Asian cuisine at Kung Food Fest. For more things to do, visit Phoenix New Times’ calendar.

Documentary Video Film Festival
Documentary filmmakers are in our midst, and there’s an easy way you can get to know their work. Head to Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, 7374 East Second Street in Scottsdale, at 7 p.m. on Thursday, November 29, when ASU professor Muriel Magenta will introduce an intriguing lineup of four-minute excerpts of 10-minute films created by students in her video art class. One student chronicled the life of a Vietnamese family, and another created a character study of a Honduran immigrant. Others tackled diverse topics from the ASU marching band to the MECHA movement. The Documentary Video Art Festival is free, but seating is limited, so don’t be late. Visit Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge LAURA DUFFY
Laura Duffy
Holiday or Any Day Star Cards
Step into any Hallmark store and you’ll find loud and frilly greeting cards devoid of any personality. Instead of settling for a card that plays “Macarena,” let local artist Laurie Blackwell teach you how to craft a greeting that will show the recipient how much you care. Holiday or Any Day Star Cards is a two-hour class that will give you the skills and supplies you need to tell that special someone “Happy Holidays” or “Thank You” with a little more character.

Learn to send someone the very best at 6 p.m. on Thursday, November 29, at Rosson House at Historic Heritage Square, 602 East Adams Street. This workshop is $22. For more information, visit Jason Keil

The Greatest Generation
If you were like most sci-fi geeks of a certain age, you hid your love of Star Trek: The Next Generation from the world, slightly ashamed that you spent your weekends obsessively following the adventures of Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise. Benjamin Ahr Harrison and Adam Pranica know the feeling. Their comedy podcast, The Greatest Generation, discusses each episode while the hosts reopen those childhood wounds inflicted from being a nerd in the late 1980s. This live taping of the podcast is for non-fans and Trekkies alike.

Boldly go where no one has gone before at 8 p.m. on Thursday, November 29, at Valley Bar, 130 North Central Avenue. Admission is $25. For more information, visit Jason Keil

S#!tfaced Shakespeare
The world is inundated with modern retellings and takes on the Bard, but S#!tfaced Shakespeare promises to combine the old with the drunk in a new way. Depending on the night you choose to attend, you might see one of three plays: Romeo and Juliet (R&J), Hamlet (Half Baked Hamlet), or Macbeth (Macbooze). If you’ve ever wondered what the famous “To be or not to be” soliloquy sounds like after a few shots of whiskey, now’s your chance. Showtime on Friday, November 30 is 8 p.m., and the production runs through Sunday, December 30, at the Phoenix Theatre located at 1825 North Central Avenue. For more information and to buy tickets, which range from $34 to $47, visit Angelica Cabral

click to enlarge Tackling hate with love, and film. - MANGO SKIES
Tackling hate with love, and film.
Mango Skies
You Racist, Sexist, Bigot
Conceived and filmed in Arizona, a 65-minute documentary called You Racist, Sexist, Bigot explores the roots of discrimination in viewing people who are different as the “other,” and assuming that’s a bad thing. Filmmakers talked with a delightful diversity of people, reinforcing the ways differences enhance the collective experience of being human. The world premiere happens at FilmBar, 815 North Second Street, where general admission for the 9 p.m. screening is $25. Spend $50 on a VIP ticket, and you’ll get photos with the directors, a film poster, a download of the film with photos and soundtrack, and free popcorn. Visit Lynn Trimble

All Puppet Players Presents Die Hard: A Christmas Story
Odds are you’ve seen or at least heard of the famous Christmas film Die Hard, and what better way to experience this timeless yuletide tale than in puppet form? That’s exactly what you’ll get at All Puppet Players Presents Die Hard: A Christmas Story at the Playhouse on the Park at Central Arts Plaza, 1850 North Central Avenue. Don’t be fooled by the felt, however; just like the movie, the show, and all other shows by the troupe, is for mature audiences, and only people 17 and over will be allowed in. The show runs from Friday, November 30 to Saturday, December 29, with all the shows at 8 p.m. To learn more, go to Angelica Cabral

click to enlarge Look for Kyllan Maney's art chair in downtown Tempe. - LYNN TRIMBLE
Look for Kyllan Maney's art chair in downtown Tempe.
Lynn Trimble
Tempe Festival of the Arts
Get your fix of fall colors, and the rest of the rainbow, during Tempe Festival of the Arts, which opens on Friday, November 30. Head to Mill Avenue between Third Street and University Drive in downtown Tempe between 10 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. to explore artworks from around the country, live music on two stages, chalk art, street performers, and a community art project with Kyllan Maney. Look for booths with Arizona artists including Karolina Adams, Jake Early, Aileen Frick, Lisa Olson, Melody Smith, and many more. The festival is free, but bring cash for food truck or beer and wine garden fare. The festival continues through Sunday, December 2. Visit Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge Release your inner crafter. - PRACTICAL ART
Release your inner crafter.
Practical Art
Felt Wreath Class
Even if crafts typically aren’t your thing, you can walk away with an impressive wreath if you spend a couple hours with Chelsea and Ben from Bad Craft. They’re teaching a felt wreath class at Practical Art, 5070 North Central Avenue, from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, December 1. They’ll bring the felt, you bring your sunny disposition. For just $35, they’ll help you make a holiday-themed wreath complete with winsome botanical designs including poinsettia, eucalyptus, and holly. They’ve even got mistletoe designs for you romantic types. Once you’ve done the class, you’ll feel inspired to try making more wreath designs on your own, which means you can keep the felt fun going every season of the year. Space is limited, so register online. Visit Lynn Trimble

Kung Food Fest
The Kung Food Fest will bring together over twenty restaurants and food trucks serving up the finest Asian cuisine in the Valley. Sample the stir fry and pad Thai, or grab a pair of chopsticks and try the sushi. If your palate craves something a little more adventurous, sink your teeth into some fusion tacos.

Prepare to get bowled over from noon to 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 1, at Heritage Square, 113 North Sixth Street. Admission is $10 online and $15 at the gate. Food and drinks are sold separately. Children 12 and under are free. For more information, visit Jason Keil

Arizona Asian Festival
Ever wanted to learn more about the diverse cultures of your neighbors from Asia? One way to do that is to attend the Arizona Asian Festival, now in its 23rd year. Authentic ethnic cuisine from the 18 Eastern countries participating will be served. There will also be a traditional fashion show, cultural performers, activities for children, a tea garden, and a new exhibit highlighting the immigrants who have served in our military.

The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both Saturday, December 1, and Sunday, December 2, at Scottsdale Civic Center Park, 3839 North Drinkwater Boulevard in Scottsdale. This is a free event. For more information, visit Jason Keil

First Annual Latino Pride Festival
The First Annual Latino Pride Festival was originally supposed to coincide with Hispanic Heritage Month in the early fall, but the weather made it difficult to put on a show. Better late than never, right? The Latino Pride Alliance is putting together the largest gathering of the Latinx LGBTQ+ community in the state. There will be two stages featuring local and national acts, a party tent that will have 12 DJs spinning music throughout the day, and an art tent that will inspire and empower.

Show your pride from 11 a.m. to midnight on Saturday, December 1, at Corona Ranch and Rodeo Grounds, 7611 South 29th Avenue in Laveen. Admission is $15. For more information, visit Jason Keil

Cruise the Canals kicks off here. - LYNN TRIMBLE
Cruise the Canals kicks off here.
Lynn Trimble
Las Noches de las Luminarias
Watch the Desert Botanical Gardens light up with holiday cheer this month at Las Noches de las Luminarias. From 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 1 through Monday, December 31, with a break on December 23, 24, and 25, the gardens will shine with the power of 8,000 hand-lit luminaria bags and thousands of white twinkle lights. There will also be a presentation called “Electric Desert: A Light And Sound Experience from the Klip Collective.” This is their second garden installation and it will feature light and video projections. The gardens are located at 1201 North Galvin Parkway. Tickets to the event range from $29.95 to $39.95, depending on membership. More information can be found at Angelica Cabral

Cruise the Canals
Maybe you’ve forgotten the finer points of science lessons on the water cycle. Turns out, you can cycle you way to a better appreciation of Arizona’s waterways during Cruise the Canals, a seven-mile bike ride exploring parts of the Arizona Canal with local water experts. It kicks off at the South Bridge of the Arizona Canal in Old Town Scottsdale, 4420 North Scottsdale Road, at 9 a.m. on Saturday, December 1. It’s a chance to learn about the intersection of art, history, and technology at Arizona Falls, plus water conservation and rainfall harvesting. The free event ends at O.H.S.O. Brewery, where you can buy brews made with Arizona water. Visit Lynn Trimble

Try Curling Class
Since it became a medal sport in the 1998 Nagano games, curling has captured the imagination of Winter Olympics fans. Known as “chess on ice,” players try to get as many granite stones as they can closest to the circular target on the other end of the ice. Sweepers can slow down or speed up the rock by changing the state of the ice in front of the stone. Seems easy, right? To learn more about the game, the Coyotes Curling Club will put on a Try Curling class. Participants should wear warm, comfortable clothes.

Break out your brooms from 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, December 2, at 2202 West Medtronic Way, #101, in Tempe. The class is $30. For more information, visit Jason Keil

click to enlarge COYOTES CURLING CLUB
Coyotes Curling Club
Arizona Filmmaker Showcase
God destroys society after a rough encounter with technology. A woman takes a second look at life after a diagnosis. Two detectives interrogate a husband-and-wife team. These are all stories you can see at this month’s Arizona Filmmaker Showcase on Sunday, December 2 at 6 p.m. The screening takes place at FilmBar, 815 North Second Street. FilmBar is the quintessential location for the indie side of film, and what’s more indie than local artists? Who knows, you might even find the next Steven Spielberg — everyone has to start somewhere. Tickets are $9.95 online plus a booking fee. You can find out more at Angelica Cabral

Jingle Bash
Local radio station Live 101.5-FM is known for playing all the hits, so consider the Jingle Bash their gift to fans of Top 40 radio. The lineup is stacked for this event: Former Fifth Harmony vocalist Camila Cabello (“Havana”) will be headlining. DJ Dillon Francis is behind the boards getting the crowd moving. Lauv, the singer-songwriter behind the single “I Like Me Better,” will also take the stage, and Cheat Codes and rapper Bryce Vine will start things off.

Kick out the jams at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, December 3, at Comerica Theatre, 400 West Washington Street. Tickets range from $38.50 to $75. For more information, visit Jason Keil

Phoenix Suns
We’re entering the third month of the NBA season and it doesn’t look like this will be the Phoenix Suns’ year. The team is residing all by its lonesome in the bottom of the Western Conference standings. It didn’t help that guard Devin Booker was out at the beginning of the season due to injury, but on the bright side, his absence from the court has given the rookies on the team a chance to shine. They won’t make it easy for the Sacramento Kings, who are currently doing slightly better than the Suns, to leave Phoenix with a win.

It’s nothing but net at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, December 4, at Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 East Jefferson Street. Tickets range from $10 to $1600. For more information, visit Jason Keil

click to enlarge Checking out ceramics for the art sale at Phoenix College. - COURTESY OF ERIC FISCHL GALLERY
Checking out ceramics for the art sale at Phoenix College.
Courtesy of Eric Fischl Gallery
Holiday Art Sale
Haul out the gift wrap, and get ready to shop for artist-made wares as Eric Fischl Gallery at Phoenix College, 1202 West Thomas Road, presents its holiday art sale. Head to the second floor of the fine and performing arts building between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Wednesday, December 5, to shop art made by students, faculty, and staff. There’s no cost to attend. Typically the sale includes works in multiple media, such as jewelry, ceramics, painting, photography, and more. It’s a fun way to support local artists while shopping for unique, affordable gifts for family and friends, and the holiday office party where giving a store-bought mug won’t cut it. Visit Lynn Trimble

The original Heathers is such a classic that it was recently remade and premiered in October, although the last two episodes never aired. If you’re not interested in yet another remake and are nostalgic for the original, you can catch the 1988 film on Wednesday, December 5, at 7 and 9:30 p.m. at FilmBar, located at 815 North Second Street. The showing is a part of their Big Gay Classic series, in which costumes are encouraged and wine specials flow. The screenings are in partnership with ION AZ, an LGBTQ magazine, and part of the proceeds go to an LGBTQ charity. Tickets go for $14, plus an online booking fee. Those can be bought at Angelica Cabral
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Jason Keil was the Phoenix New Times culture editor from August 2019 to May 2020.
Contact: Jason Keil
Lynn Trimble is an award-winning freelance writer and photographer specializing in arts and culture, including visual and performing arts
Contact: Lynn Trimble