Phoenix, your weekend plans are here.
PoeFest @ Hotel San Carlos Arizona Curriculum Theater is getting old school with its scare tactics as it brings back the fifth annual PoeFest. By now a Halloween tradition, this month-long series celebrating the gothic literature of Edgar Allen Poe takes signature stories and poems -- including Annabel Lee, The Raven, The Cask of Amontillado, and The Tell-Tale Heart -- to the stage. Much more than just readings, these literary classics get a creepy makeover as performed by characters in a 19th century asylum for the criminally insane.
PoeFest will run at 8 p.m. every Friday and Saturday from October 4 through the 26 at Hotel San Carlos, 202 North Central Avenue. A special Raven Finale will be presented October 31 at Rosson House, 115 North Sixth Street. This final Poe rendition will run in 20 minute intervals from 7:30 to 9: 30 p.m. Hotel San Carlos tickets are $20; Rosson House tickets are $10. For more information, visit www.poefest.org or call 1-888-343-4228. -- Katie Johnson
First Friday Zombie Walk @ Revolver Records Zombies get a bad wrap. Sure they're undead, but they do have some redeeming qualities. After all, they only want you for your brains, unlike tvampires, who are all about looks. Sure, there isn't exactly a storied history of zombie heroes, but that's the fun of it. Bruce Campbell and his fistful of boomstick can't slow down the annual Zombie Walk, which takes over downtown Phoenix in search of brains, blood, and guts. In spite of the mayhem, this is a family-friendly event that features live rockabilly music, a costume contest, face painting, and more.
Join the walking dead on Friday, October 4. The walk begins at 5 p.m. outside of Revolver Records, 918 North Second Street. This all-ages event is free, though attendees are encouraged to bring canned food donations for St. Mary's Food Bank. Call 602-348-7179 or visit www.azzombiewalk.com. -- Melissa Fossum
Rapture Horror Expo @ Double Tree It's a horror show you'll want to see.
The Rapture Horror Expo returns for a spook-tacular weekend. Just in time for Halloween, the convention presents workshops about the paranormal, surviving zombies, make-up tutorials, and costume and couture fashion shows. United Blood Services will be on hand to take your blood during its second annual blood drive, while ladies and high-pitched gents alike can scream bloody murder during a Scream Queen contest.
Daily film showings include local pieces Night of the Sea Monkey and The Frankenstein Syndrome, and a 10-year anniversary screening of Rob Zombie's House of 1000 Corpses -- complete with a panel hosted by actor Sid Haig (Corpses, The Devil's Rejects).
The fright fest starts at 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, October 5 and 6, at the DoubleTree Hotel, 2100 South Priest Drive in Tempe. Single day and weekend passes are $30 to $70. Admission is free for children 10 and younger. Visit www.rapturehorrorexpo.com. -- Janessa Hilliard
Bill Burr @ Celebrity Theatre Bill Burr is one busy guy. Between his is increasing presence in movies like The Heat and his reccurring role as Kuby in AMC's recently finished Breaking Bad -- and let's not forget his weekly MondayMorning podcast -- it's a marvel how this comedian manages to deliver anywhere from 25 to 200 shows a year. Known around the humor circuit as a "comedian's comedian," Burr brings his unapologetic views on women, bankers, and being an asshole to the stage in comedy albums like Emotionally Unavailable, Why Do I Do This?, Let It Go, and his most recent, You People Are All The Same.
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Bill Burr brings his fresh material and is not-so-fresh attitude to Phoenix on Saturday, October 5, at Celebrity Theatre, 440 North 32nd Street. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show starts at 8. Tickets are $35. Visit www.celebritytheatre.com or call the box office at 602-267-1600. -- Katie Johnson
The Mighty Vandals @ Theater Works The second Celebración Artística de las Américas (CALA Festival) will spend the next month sprinkling Arizona with cultural delights celebrating the contributions of Latino heritage to our vibrant life in these Americas. New Carpa Theater Company's The Mighty Vandals, an official CALA event, tells a gripping story of Arizona's 1951 high-school basketball champions, a team of mostly Mexican-American kids from the mining town of Miami who beat the odds (and beat the brilliant team from segregated Carver High) under the leadership of Ernie Kivisto, a Marine-vet coach who allegedly imported the fast break to the Grand Canyon State from his playing days at Marquette.
Theater Works hosts the closing performance at 2 p.m. Sunday, October 6, at Peoria Center for the Performing Arts, 8355 West Peoria Avenue. Tickets are $12 and $16 at 623-815-7930 or www.theaterworks.org. Find deets on other culinary, performance, educational, and art events comprising the fest at www.calaalliance.org. -- Julie Peterson