Arty Girl: Happy International Museum Day

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Did you know there is an International Museum Day?

Well, you could have at least assumed it. I mean, if there's something as idiotic as National Star Wars Day, we had better redeem ourselves by honoring our museums, right?

Mark your calendars on May 18th as International Museum Day and then mark you calendars with the dates that I'm about to list and then mark your calendars for July 13th and send me a present because that's my birthday. Just kidding...man, I'm hilarious.

Anyway, a number of valley museums are celebrating International Museum Day. Only, they all aren't claiming the 18th so you can hit 'em each one of them if you want.

Every Weekend in May: The Arizona Military Museum is open 1-4 p.m. with free admission, 5600 East McDowell Rd in Phoenix, 602-267-2676, www.azguard.gov/museum/museum.htm

This place is teeming with AZ military artifacts from time periods spanning the the Spanish Colonial, Mexican and Arizona Territory, Spanish-American War, WWI, Korean War, Vietnam, Desert Storm and the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. You'll be treated to weapons, uniforms, photos and lots of other fascinating (or depressing, depending on your mood) artifacts.

Wednesday, May 13: Arizona State University Museums and galleries are open 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. with free admission, www.asu.edu/museums
Pop in and out of over 30 art spaces to experience talks and tours of the campus art facilities. Check the website for scheduling.

Saturday, May 16 & Sunday, May 17: Heard Museum & Phoenix Art Museum, 2 museums for the price of 1
Heard Museum, 2301 N Central Ave in Phoenix, 602-258-8848. www.heard.org

Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 N Central Ave in Phoenix, 602-257-1222, www.phxart.org
If you haven't been to either of these museums, allow me to shame you. Both are a must-see for any valley resident and they are right down the street from one another. Just buy a ticket from one museum and present the receipt to the other for free admission. Really, come on...the only way it could get better is if they helicoptered you in.

Saturday, May 16: Pueblo Grande Museum open 9 a.m.-4:45 p.m. with free admission, 4619 E Washington St in Phoenix, 602-495-0901, www.pueblogrande.com
This is one of our Native American sites that is a gem of the Valley. Check out the prehistoric Hohokam's archaeological ruins of the platform mound, ball court and canal systems. You can also see replicated housing and agricultural systems plus three indoor galleries with exhibits about the Hohokam.

Sunday, May 17: Desert Caballeros Western Museum, free admission, 21 N Fontier St in Wickenburg, 928-684-2272, www.westernmuseum.org

This looks like it's a lot of cowboy stuff but I say it's worth it - it's high time us Zonies embrace our penchant for leather chaps and spurs, dammit!

Tuesday, May 19: Deer Valley Rock Art Center open 8 a.m.-2 p.m. with 2 for 1 admission, 3711 W Deer Valley Rd in Phoenix, 623-582-8007, www.asu.edu/clas/shesc/dvrac

If you haven't heard of this, you're not alone. But it actually sounds pretty neat. It's a 47-acre nature preserve, archaeological site and museum. It features the largest collection of Native American rock art in the Valley. Visitors get to experience an "interpretive trail" taking a time warp back to 5000 years ago when the surviving petroglyphs were made.

Saturday, May 23: Cave Creek Museum open 1-4:30 p.m. with 2 for 1 admission, 6140 E Skyline Dr in Cave Creek, 480-488-2764, cavecreekmuseum.com

This has exactly what you would expect: historic artifacts and info about Cave Creek.

Take your pick of the litter, my friends...and happy International Museum Day!

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