Things to Do

The Best Things to Do in Phoenix This Week

The tattoo artists at the latest Body Art Expo will get under your skin.
The tattoo artists at the latest Body Art Expo will get under your skin. Benjamin Leatherman


This year really has flown by. We're already into November, but don't despair: There's still plenty of time to have fun and create some great memories of 2021. This week, you can check out the Body Art Expo in Scottsdale, celebrate 50 years of the Alwun House, learn how to cook noodles, and more.

Body Art Expo

Thinking about getting some ink done? You’re not alone, as it’s estimated that Americans will spend more than $1.65 billion this year on tattoos. This weekend, thousands of locals will exchange their hard-earned cash to get needled during the annual Body Art Expo at WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 North Pima Road. More than 250 tattoo and body-mod artists from throughout the U.S. will be slinging ink and piercing skin at the three-day event, which takes place from Friday, November 5, to Sunday, November 7. If you’re already sporting an amazing-looking sleeve or backpiece, tattoo contests in multiple categories will be held throughout the weekend. Live music and performances by sideshow entertainers are also planned. Hours are 2 to 11 p.m. on Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $19.99 per day or $45 for the weekend. Tickets and more information are available here. Benjamin Leatherman


click to enlarge The Pancakes & Booze Art Show is back. - MICHELLE SASONOV
The Pancakes & Booze Art Show is back.
Michelle Sasonov

Pancakes and Booze

Maybe your paintbrush skills are lousy, but you really excel at using a fork. If so, you’re sure to dig the Pancakes and Booze Art Show coming to The Duce, 525 South Central Avenue, at 8 p.m. on Friday, November 5. It’s a pop-up exhibition with more than 300 artworks by over 75 local artists, where you can get your fill of art and shovel in all the pancakes you can eat. The evening also includes live painting, including body painting, plus DJs spinning vinyl tunes. You need to be at least 18 to attend. Tickets are $15 at the door. The event, which runs until 1 a.m., is part of the Los Angeles-based Pancakes and Booze brand, which has been doing pop-up arts shows around the country for a decade or so. And it’s one of many exhibitions you can see in or near downtown Phoenix during November First Friday. Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge There's a new show opening at Alwun House on First Friday. - JENNIFER GOLDBERG
There's a new show opening at Alwun House on First Friday.
Jennifer Goldberg

Alwun House Exhibit

The offbeat arts venue launched in 1971 as a way to emphasize the “all one” approach to making and experiencing art is celebrating a milestone anniversary this year with a series of events showcasing local talents. The Alwun House Foundation opens its 50th Anniversary Invitational Art Exhibit on First Friday, November 5, when the free opening reception takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. Expect an impressive lineup curated with assistance from Ted Decker, as the gallery highlights artists who’ve had a significant impact on Alwun House and the Phoenix arts community during the past five decades. Head to 1204 East Roosevelt Street to take it all in. The exhibition continues through November 20, with regular viewing hours from noon to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays. Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge See Black Serenity #20 by Granville Carroll at Northlight Gallery. - GRANVILLE CARROLL
See Black Serenity #20 by Granville Carroll at Northlight Gallery.
Granville Carroll

'Naked and the Nude'

Nudity in art might get taken down on social media, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it. Northlight Gallery, 605 East Grant Street, is presenting an exhibition called “Naked and the Nude,” were you can see self-portraits by a trio of contemporary photographers: Granville Carroll, Tarrah Krajnak, and Arno Rafael Minkkinen. Collectively, they explore identity, pandemic isolation, and the body as landscape. Gallery hours are noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 6, and admission is free. The gallery is located at ASU’s Grant Street Studios, where you can also explore an exhibit inside Step Gallery that day. “Naked and the Nude” continues through November 20, and also includes works from the Soleri Foundation Collection by artists including Robert Mapplethorpe, Andy Warhol, and Edward Weston. Lynn Trimble
click to enlarge Attendees of Phoenix Pride in 2019. - JACOB TYLER DUNN
Attendees of Phoenix Pride in 2019.
Jacob Tyler Dunn

Phoenix Pride 2021

When Phoenix Pride returns this weekend, organizers, attendees, and the Valley’s LGBTQIA community will have a lot to celebrate. It will not only be the first time the event has been staged in two years (thanks to COVID-19) but the 40th anniversary of Phoenix’s first Pride march in 1981. As such, this year’s event will feature a mix of history and revelry over two days.


The celebration begins with the Phoenix Pride Parade on Saturday, November 6, which departs from Third Street and Thomas Road at 10 a.m. It will be followed by the Pride Festival at Steele Indian School Park, 300 East Indian School Road, which will run through Sunday, November 7, and offer vendors, multiple stages of entertainment, local and touring drag performers, an art expo, the adult-oriented “Erotic World” area, and more. The main stage’s lineup will include sets by singers and bands like Jody Watley, Neon Trees, and Deborah Cox. Hours are from noon to 9 p.m. on both days. General admission is $30 to $35 daily or $50 for the weekend. VIP tickets are $100 to $150. Full details and a complete schedule can be found on the official website. Benjamin Leatherman


click to enlarge We spotted this artwork by Lalo Cota while exploring murals in the East Valley. - LYNN TRIMBLE
We spotted this artwork by Lalo Cota while exploring murals in the East Valley.
Lynn Trimble

Lowrider Show

You’ll find more than 200 lowrider vehicles in the west parking lot of Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 North Chandler Avenue, Chandler, when the center presents a Lowrider Car and Art Show with Original Street Life. It’s happening from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, November 7. Expect vintage vehicles in 18 classes from trucks to low rods, dating from the 1930s through the 2000s. The show also includes a 20-foot wall of art and photography, plus food trucks and DJs spinning music. Artist Cain Carias and his puppet El Triste will be holding a meet and greet. And artist Lalo Cota, whose lowrider murals dot the metro Phoenix landscape, will be doing a collaborative project with a pop-up barbershop. The event is free, although you do risk getting home to find you have an uncontrollable urge to buy yourself some new vintage wheels. 
Also that night, the band War, whose hits include the 1975 song "Low Rider," will perform during a ticketed concert at the center, where there will be an ofrenda honoring the group's co-founder B. B. Dickerson who died earlier this year. Lynn Trimble

Vintagepalooza 5

If you graduated from the old school or are a firm believer in the old chestnut about how “they don’t make things like they used to,” Vintagepalooza 5 should be right up your alley. Ditto for anyone in the market for some throwback apparel, accessories, or collectibles. The one-day retro flea market on Sunday, November 7, inside the Phoenix Convention Center, 100 North Third Street, will be populated by more than 80 vendors selling vintage clothing, footwear, toys, and various and sundry items for pickers to peruse. Food trucks will also be available. Hours are from noon to 7 p.m. Admission is free. Benjamin Leatherman


click to enlarge One of many lovely views at the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. - MCDOWELL SONORAN PRESERVE
One of many lovely views at the McDowell Sonoran Preserve.
McDowell Sonoran Preserve

If Rocks Could Talk

If rocks could talk, they’d probably have something to say about the recent climate talks in Scotland. Of course, rocks don’t speak, which means we have to rely on geologists and other experts to explain their origins, properties, and significance. Mike Nolan, a steward with the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, will be talking rocks during a free presentation at the Mustang Library auditorium, 10101 North 90th Street, Scottsdale. He’ll focus on how rocks formed in the region and the fascinating history of their evolution over time to become the landscape we see today. If Rocks Could Talk: The Geology of the Sonoran Mountain Preserve takes place from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Monday, November 8. Register online before you attend. Lynn Trimble

click to enlarge Learn how to cook truly amazing noodle dishes. - LAUREN CUSIMANO
Learn how to cook truly amazing noodle dishes.
Lauren Cusimano

Oodles of Noodles

You might have lived off cheap packets of ramen noodles during college, but your tastes have likely grown at least a bit more sophisticated since then. If you’re ready to really dive into the culinary world of noodles, check out the Oodles of Noodles cooking class coming to Sweet Basil Cooking School, 10749 North Scottsdale Road, Suite 101, Scottsdale. The 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. class on Tuesday, November 9, will include making not only homemade ramen noodles, but also vegetable chow mein and five additional dishes from tagliatelle with pancetta and parsnips with homemade pasta to authentic German spaetzle with mushroom sauce. Patricia Ribeiro will be teaching the class, and the cost is $75. Once you've taken the class, you might have a hard time believing you ever settled for those store-bought noodles. Lynn Trimble

Arizona Speaks

Pandemic restrictions opened up a whole new landscape of online and virtual offerings that people are still enjoying today, including talks with various artists and authors. Arizona Humanities is presenting "From "Chief" to Code Talker: Four Profiles of the Navajo Code Talkers" as part of its AZ Speaks series online from 6 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, November 10. It’s being led by Laura Tohe, a Diné poet, librettist, and author whose own father was among the Navajo Code Talkers who had such a significant impact on World War II. She’ll be sharing stories of four members of the Navajo Nation, exploring the ways they demonstrated resilience and self-determination after returning from the war to accolades yet still living in poverty. The talk is free and you should register online if you’d like to participate. Lynn Trimble
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