Alternative Black Friday Vintage Market
Planning on waking up before daybreak to find some deals at a big box store? Avoid the mob (and the mundane) and head over to CityScape to find unique gifts from local vendors. The Alternative Black Friday Vintage Market will feature over 30 local makers, artisans, and vintage stores selling truly special presents for everyone. There will also be live music and holiday-themed drinks to help you fly through that shopping list.
Shop till you drop from noon to 7 p.m. on Friday, November 23, at 1 East Washington Street. This is a free event. The first 100 shoppers will receive a souvenir tote bag. For more information, visit cityscapephoenix.com. Jason Keil
Charity Pie Night
Pie lovers, take note. You can shop and indulge your slice cravings on Friday, November 23, between 7 and 9 p.m. That’s when Practical Art, 5070 North Central Avenue, is holding its next charity pie night, with proceeds going to a nonprofit called Girls Who Code that’s working to end the technology gender gap. For $10, you can get unlimited slices of homemade pies, in traditional and more adventurous flavors. You can shop works by well over 100 artists while you’re there, with 10 percent of sales going to the charity as well. And you’ll get some fabulous pie ideas to try at home this holiday season. Visit practical-art.com. Lynn Trimble
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in Concert
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the third installment of the multibillion-dollar film franchise was originally scored by John Williams and was nominated for Best Original Music Score at the Academy Awards. Over the weekend of Friday, November 23, through Sunday, November 25, the Phoenix Symphony is putting on Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in Concert, a screening the film with live music from the orchestra, at the Phoenix Symphony Hall, 75 North Second Street. Even though the Harry Potter series doesn't technically count as holiday films, engaging in nostalgia is a typical way to spend the Thanksgiving through Christmas time period. If you want to partake in watching this classic, tickets range from $25 to $93. For more information, go to phoenixsymphony.org. Angelica Cabral
It’s not lost on the residents of our desert metropolis that outdoor ice skating is virtually impossible in our warm climate, but CityScape has somehow harnessed the power to give downtown Phoenix an open-air rink to enjoy for the holidays. The grand opening of CitySkate will feature the debut of the new 30-foot tall Unity Tree sculpture with an interactive light display.
Illuminate the holiday season starting at 6 p.m. on Friday, November 23, at 1 East Washington Street. Admission to skate is $15 and $10 for members of the military, seniors, and children 8 and younger. Skating sessions continue through Sunday, January 6, 2019. For more information, visit cityskatephx.com. Jason Keil
Walk away from the tweetstorms for a night, so you can enjoy political satire set to song. It’s happening at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 East Second Street, at 8 p.m. on Friday, November 23, when a D.C.-based troupe called Capitol Steps returns for a side-splitting dose of humor inspired by current events. Odds are, you’ve spent much of the last two years wondering whether you should laugh or cry. That’s an easy call when Capitol Steps rolls into town, because they’re all about poking fun with a political twist at all sides, and making sure laughter out-polls tears. Tickets to their Make America Grin Again show start at $49. Visit scottsdaleperformingarts.org. Lynn Trimble
Annual Ornament Marketplace
Everyone’s hangups seem to multiply over the holidays, but that’s not a problem over at the Heard Museum Shop, 2301 North Central Avenue, where hundreds of unique holiday ornaments hang on festive trees during their annual ornament marketplace. Get there on Friday, November 23, when the shop is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. That’s the first day of the free three-day event, which means you’ll have the best selection to choose from — including ornaments from elegant to whimsical, created with diverse materials such as metal, wood, fabric, and beads. There’s even a limited-edition sterling silver and turquoise ornament by featured Navajo artist Kee Yazzie. Visit heard.org. Lynn Trimble
The Phoenix Flea market returns to Heritage Square, 113 North Sixth Street, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 24, which means you can take a bite out of your holiday shopping list while supporting Small Business Saturday. Five dollars cash gets you into the festive marketplace, where more than 175 vendors will be plying their wares — including fine art, fashion, vintage goods, culinary finds, and more. It’s a chance to shop local without running all over town, while you revel in good company and that fabulous Phoenix no-snow glow. Bring extra coin for food trucks and vendors, such as Waffle Love and Honey Bear’s BBQ. Visit Phoenix Flea on Facebook. Lynn Trimble
Saturday Morning Bird Walk
Odds are, you won’t encounter any turkeys during the free Saturday Morning Bird Walk, happening from 8 to 9 a.m. on November 24 at Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, 3131 South Central Avenue, so you won’t have to look one in the eye and explain how you feasted on its kin just two days before. Instead, you’ll spot birds that are native to the desert habitat along the Rio Salado Habitat Restoration Area, marveling at the lush landscape tucked under the freeway where nature’s calm is a welcome contrast to hectic holiday pursuits. Turns out, more than 200 types of birds call the region home. Visit riosalado.audubon.org. Lynn Trimble
David Spade is probably best known for his movies Joe Dirt and Tommy Boy, but even when he was a part of the cast of Saturday Night Live (“buh-bye” was his signature catchphrase), he was taking shots at the celebrity lifestyle with a mocking tone and a snide point of view. Now the comedian, who grew up in Scottsdale, is bringing his sardonic wit to the stage with a set that pokes fun not only at the ridiculousness of celebrity but also at himself.
The laughs begin at 7 p.m. on Saturday, November 24, at StandUp Live, 50 West Jefferson Street with an additional show at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $45 with a two-drink minimum. For more information, visit phoenix.standuplive.com. Jason Keil
Cholo Goth Night
Goths have been making a comeback in a big way. Crescent Ballroom, located at 308 North Second Avenue, is leaning into the trend with their Cholo Goth Night on Saturday, November 24 from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. The event will have a DJ set from Dave Parley, one half of the San Diego Chicano electronic rock duo Prayers, whose music examines street life. Recently, the band has played at Coachella and won for Best Alternative Band at the San Diego Music Awards. Tickets are $5 and the event is 21 and up. Visit crescentphx.com to learn more and see other upcoming events. Angelica Cabral
The Rural Route Film Festival Shorts Program contains an unusual warning: “Scenes of farm/rural practices and animated violence are realistically depicted and may be upsetting to some audience members.” But that’s how life is outside of the city, and this collection of films takes an unabashed look into that lifestyle. There are tales of UFO sightings, poachers, and stories that explain the impact global warming has on farmers. Alan Webber, who is the founder and director of the festival, will be answering questions via Skype after the screening.
The program begins at 1 p.m. on Sunday, November 25, at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts’ Virginia G. Piper Theater, 7380 East Second Street in Scottsdale. Tickets are $14. For more information, visit scottsdaleperformingarts.org. Jason Keil
The musical Fun Home tells the story of Alison Bechdel’s life and how she discovered her sexuality, came to terms with her gay father, and everything in between. If that last name sounds familiar, it’s because the Bechdel test has long been used as a measure for female representation in media.
This current production of her musical, based on the graphic novel of the same name, is being held at Phoenix Theatre, 1825 North Central Avenue. The show runs through Sunday, December 2, and tickets are priced at $36 to $86. To buy tickets and get more information, you can go to phoenixtheatre.com. Angelica Cabral
Despite some controversy about whether or not she stole jokes and her recent arrest during a protest against Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination, Amy Schumer remains on the up and up. In 2018 alone, she starred in a film, started a podcast, and was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play. To round off the year, she’s on a two-month long tour, which is stopping at Comerica Theatre, located at 400 West Washington Street, on Sunday, November 25, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $53 and go up to $128.50. You can find out more at amyschumer.com. Angelica Cabral