Things to Do

The Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Weekend

Joy Young helped launch The Storyline.
Joy Young helped launch The Storyline. Joy Young
Are you looking for a fun way to close out the year? This weekend, you can get competitive at Drag Bingo and Cats, put your 2019 pop culture knowledge to the test at Year in Review Trivia Night, or have a few laughs during Stand Up Science.  For more things to do, visit Phoenix New Times’ calendar.

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Ideal gaming setting.
Robrt L. Pela

Drag Bingo and Cats

In the past, La Gattara Cat Lounge and Boutique has held special events to cater to a variety of feline aficionados, like its evenings of D&D and yoga. But here’s an outing that trumps almost everything: Drag Bingo and Cats. The event itself seems self-explanatory (playing bingo with cats and drag queens, including Freddy Prinze Charming and Felicia Minor). The real magic, then, is in how it all plays out. Quaint and adorable? Likely. Delightfully chaotic? Always a possibility. At least it beats an evening of tax accountant chess with wolf spiders.

The games begin at 7 p.m. on Friday, December 27, at 1301 East University Drive in Tempe. Tickets are $25. Chris Coplan

The Storyline

Are you tired of hearing visiting relatives regurgitate their tales of holidays past? Hear some fresh narratives, told during The Storyline’s next event at Changing Hands Bookstore, 300 West Camelback Road. It’s a story slam hosted by Dan Hoen Hull and Joy Young to foster a spirit of fun in the community. Ten people will have six minutes each to share their best story related to this theme: The End? And five audience members will get to judge their storytelling prowess.

The winner takes home a $30 prize. Everybody else gets the satisfaction of knowing they’re not alone. Imagine the many ways this theme could go. That nasty break-up. A near-death experience. A recurring nightmare about forgetting to end your sentences with a period during grade school. There’s no telling what might come up here, which might be half the fun. You be the judge. Lynn Trimble

It's trivia time at Valley Bar.
Valley Bar

Year in Review Trivia Night

Homelessness is anything but trivial. Even so, trivia buffs can test their trivia prowess while benefiting Central Arizona Shelter Services during its annual Year in Review Trivia Night at Valley Bar, 130 North Central Avenue. It’s happening from 6 p.m. on Friday, December 27 (doors open at 5:30 p.m.).

Teams will compete to answer 20 questions on topics such as pop culture, politics, sports, music, business, film, and newsmakers. You need to be at least 21 to attend. Tickets are $35, with all proceeds benefiting CASS, which operates adult and family emergency shelters. Winning teams get prizes. Lynn Trimble

Cocktail, anyone?
Southwest Gardener

Not Your Mom’s Bloody Mary Mix

If you’ve got 30 minutes and a hankering for some post-holiday Bloody Mary time, sign up for a Not Your Mom’s Bloody Mary Mix class at Southwest Gardener, 300 West Camelback Road. Tanya Chakravarty will be sharing her Bloody Mary recipes and tips on Saturday, December 28. Classes start at 1 p.m., 2 p.m., and 3 p.m.

These are no tomato juice plus generic mix Bloody Marys. Chakravarty makes her cocktails with fresh vegetables and a tomato base. She’ll even show you how to whip up a green Bloody Mary, and send you on your merry way with a quart-size jar of Bloody Mary mix — plus recipes. The class costs $35. Lynn Trimble

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Wine pairs well with painting.
Carrie Curran Art Studios

Van Gogh Vino

By now you’re surely tired of seeing all things Christmas around every turn. Try changing the view over at Carrie Curran Art Studios, 8300 North Hayden Road, Suite A100 in Scottsdale. You can paint your little heart out while you sip wine, then go home with an original work of art that has nothing to do with snowmen or flying reindeer.

The theme for Van Gogh Vino on Saturday, December 28, is Illuminated Desert. Bring your own wine, then get step-by-step instructions to create your own desert-themed painting. The $45 class fee includes a canvas and paint. The studio will lend wine glasses and corkscrews, plus aprons to keep everyone from going home covered in paint. The class runs from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Lynn Trimble

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Good writers read a lot of books.

Creative Writing Workshop

There’s never a wrong time to exercise your writing muscles. Unless, perhaps, you’re spilling all those juicy family secrets that came out over the beef brisket or tamales this holiday season. Maybe now is the time to dive into writing, with all that fresh resolve that comes with the prospect of a new year.

You can give it a go at Bookmans Entertainment Exchange, 1056 South Country Club Drive in Mesa. They’re holding a free creative writing workshop for writers of all experience levels from 4 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, December 29. It’s also a fun way to give a few writing exercises a whirl. The words that spill forth might surprise you. Lynn Trimble

Stand Up Science

Want to take part in an experiment without the risk of chemical burns? Then be sure to hit up Stand Up Science, in which a “mad scientist” (Shane Mauss of the Here We Are podcast) combines comedy and scientific exploration. Expect an evening of stand-up routines featuring “cerebral material” split between presentations by local scientists. It’s like a TED Talk by Jerry Seinfeld, or if Albert Einstein put together a tight 15 minutes.

The show is set for 3 p.m. on Sunday, December 29, at Stir Crazy Comedy Club, 6751 North Sunset Boulevard in Glendale. Tickets are $19. Chris Coplan
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Chris Coplan has been a professional writer since the 2010s, having started his professional career at Consequence of Sound. Since then, he's also been published with TIME, Complex, and other outlets. He lives in Central Phoenix with his fiancee, a dumb but lovable dog, and two bossy cats.
Contact: Chris Coplan
Lynn Trimble is an award-winning freelance writer and photographer specializing in arts and culture, including visual and performing arts
Contact: Lynn Trimble