Phoenix, entertainment and good times await. Here's how to spend your off-time this week.
WWE Monday Night RAW @ US Airways Center It's only been eight days since SummerSlam, the WWE's marquee dog-days pay-per-view showdown, but the fed'll be shifting gears from the event's aftermath to ramping up for September's Night of Champions. Monday Night RAW will be a test of which grapplers can extend their SummerSlam heat.
See also: New Times' Calendar of Events
The usual suspects of the WWE's top tier like John Cena, CM Punk, and Alberto Del Rio will be in the house, but one of the more intriguing undercard figures might be Rob Van Dam whose recent return after a six-year absence led to a shot at the US championship belt. Rampaging cultists the Wyatt Family and the always-meddling McMahons will be on hand to stir up the chaos as well.
WWE's Monday Night RAW rattles the US Airways Center, 201 East Jefferson Street, starting at 4:30 p.m. August 26. Tickets range from $20 to $95. Visit www.usairwayscenter.com for more information. -- Jose Gonzalez
Arizona Diamondbacks vs. San Diego Padres @ Chase Field The Arizona Diamondbacks spent nearly all of first half of this season sitting comfortably atop the NL West, and a playoff spot seemed all but assured. Then July happened. There are plenty of explanations for the Diamondbacks' collapse, but perhaps the biggest problem might have been an inability to beat mediocre teams. Perhaps no team exposed this weakness more than the San Diego Padres. The Padres are barely out of the cellar, but they've taken 8 of 12 from the Diamondbacks this year; those 8 games would have been more than enough to have the D-Backs in the thick of the pennant race.F
The D-Backs can't get back into the playoff race (barring a miracle) but they can gain some small measure of revenge when they host San Diego this week at Chase Field, 401 East Jefferson Street. Tuesday, August 27's game will start at 6:40 p.m. Tickets start at $5. Visit www.azdbacks.com or call 602-462-6500. -- Ed Kummerer
Sundance Film Festival Short Films: Best of 2013 @ Phoenix Art Museum While not all of us can make it out to Utah to schmooze with the silver screen's finest at Sundance, we can still take in the most talked about, trendiest, and, in this case, tiniest films from the festival. In this limited screening of Sundance Film Festival Short Films: Best of 2013, movie-lovers can get an inside look at some of the year's most innovative independent films. Offering everything from comedy to drama, animation to documentary, this 93-minute lineup of Sundance award-winning and -nominated shorts will feature eight of the most memorable films: The Date, Whiplash, Skinningrove, Until the Quiet Comes, Irish Folk Furniture, The Event, Jonah, and K.I.T.
Those top short films come to the big screen for one night only on Wednesday, August 28, at Phoenix Art Museum,1625 North Central Avenue. The screening starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $7 for museum members and $10 for non-members. Call 602-257-1222 or visit www.phxart.org. -- Katie Johnson
Rent @ Phoenix Theatre Maybe Hair and The Who's Tommy set the bar way high, or else rock musicals are simply challenging -- they didn't really ignite as a genre on the live stage before Jonathan Larson's 1996 Rent. Perfectly set on Manhattan's Lower East Side as the 1980s blurred into the 1990s, featuring artists, addicts, squatters, and free spirits facing romantic issues, neighborhood gentrification, and the horrifying first decade of the AIDS epidemic, the show echoes Puccini's opera La Bohème.
By now, you might recognize a few songs: "Seasons of Love" (a.k.a. "525,600 Minutes"), "I'll Cover You," and "Out Tonight" (famously caterwauled by Penny on The Big Bang Theory). Though we've enjoyed sexy, high-energy local productions of Rent already, Phoenix Theatre's season-opening version (for mature and worldly audiences), should rock severely, with seasoned thespians who've been in the show before (some as more than one character in different mountings) and exciting new faces. Thursday, August 29's curtain is 7:30 p.m. at 100 East McDowell Road. Tickets start at $30 for performances through Sunday, September 15. Call 602-254-2151 or visit www.phoenixtheatre.com. -- Julie Peterson
Splat Paint & Foam Party @ Arizona Event Center Who needs "good clean fun" when you can get a little dirty? Such is the premise of Splat's annual paint party. This rave spans three stages, each designated for paint, foam, and a "clean" zone. The bash boasts a laundry list of DJs that run the gamut from hardstyle to electro to dubstep, including the talents of Luminox, Freddy Todd, DJ Dali, St8house, and many more. Guests are encouraged to wear white in order to make the paint appear that much more brilliant. (But don't worry; the paint is washable, though you may want to keep your colorful clothes as a souvenir.) VIP ticketholders receive a complimentary bottle of paint, because dousing somebody with hot pink paint isn't a bad way to break the ice.
Get your groove on at Splat's Paint and Foam Party on Friday, August 30, at Arizona Event Center, 1300 South Country Club Drive, Suite105, in Mesa. Doors open at 7 p.m., but the party rages until 3 a.m. General admission tickets are $20, and VIP are $30. Visit www.facebook.com/1vibeofficial or call or text 602-315-9023 for info. -- Melissa Fossum