Things to Do

The Best Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Week


You've probably got lots of things planned already for this holiday week, but in case you're looking for more things to do, we've got suggestions, like a fashion exhibit at Phoenix Art Museum, a jam session at The Nash, and more.

Beginning Amigurumi Class

Search for #amigurumi on Instagram and you’ll find more than 12 million images, most featuring the Japanese art form of knitting or crocheting small, stuffed creatures with yarn. Of course, you’ll find plenty of adorable amigurumi animals on Pinterest too, where popular animals include foxes, birds, and hedgehogs. If you want to try making one yourself, you can get great tips during the Beginning Amigurumi class happening from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, December 23, at Tempe Yarn and Fiber, 1415 East University Drive, Tempe. The class costs $25. Who knows? You mind end up with a fabulous new hobby to help bring a bit more whimsy to your life for the new year ahead.

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Look for Jesse Perry's mural just off Main Street.
Lynn Trimble

Self-Guided Art Walk

Sometimes you find yourself with a little bit of free time, but nothing exciting on your calendar. It’s the perfect opportunity to head out and explore the public art in your midst, or branch out to see artworks on view in nearby cities and towns. It’s easily done in Mesa, which has a comprehensive self-guided art walk map online, so you know where to stroll while you’re searching for local murals and sculptures. The map includes more than a dozen mural sites, where you can see works by artists including Lalo Cota, Hugo Medina, Mural Mice, Lauren Lee, and Jesse Perry. The map also includes more than three dozen sculptures inspired by everything from baseball to wildlife. You can check it out anytime on Friday, December 24, when other spaces you frequent might be taking a holiday break.

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Enjoy a Sunday jam session at The Nash.
Benjamin Leatherman

Jazz Jam Session

Roosevelt Row regulars know that The Nash, 110 East Roosevelt Street, offers a steady stream of jazz music by renowned and emerging musicians. Even during the holidays, they’re keeping the music coming, with a lineup that includes their regular Sunday night Jam Session. Head to The Nash at 6 p.m. on Sunday, December 26, to hear pianist and bandleader Ioannis Goudelis lead a jam session where student musicians and singers can join in. The three-hour jam session is open to audience members of all ages, and tickets are $10. Of course, admission is free for vocalists and instrumentalists who lend their talents to the evening.

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Calling all Jane Austen fans...
Arizona Theatre Company

Miss Bennett: Christmas at Pemberley

Playwrights Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon imagined a sequel for the famed Jane Austen novel Pride and Prejudice, creating a new work titled Miss Bennett: Christmas at Pemberley, which is being performed by Arizona Theatre Company at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, December 26. The play is set two years after the events of Pride and Prejudice, and centers around the middle sister Mary Bennett. It’s being performed at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe Street. Tickets start at $50.00. By the way, Sunday’s 2 p.m. performance is an American Sign Language and Audio Description (ASL/AD) performance. Even if you’re not a die-hard Austen fan, you might enjoy a coupleof hours of theatrical escapism amid the holiday season hustle and bustle.

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Hallmark, Rompers, c. 1967. Printed 80% Cellulose and 20% cotton paper. Collection of Phoenix Art Museum, Promised gift of Kelly Ellman.
Image © Phoenix Art Museum

'60s Fashion Exhibit

Some weird things have been made with paper in recent years, from architectural structures to massive piñatas. For fashion nerds, there’s something wonderful about seeing wearable works of art created with paper, which is just what you’ll find at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Avenue. The museum’s new “Generation Paper: Fast Fashion of the ‘60s” exhibit includes more than 80 garments and accessories culled from its own collection, all made with disposable materials including paper, plastic, and laminate. Expect a fun assortment of dresses, bikinis, hats, jumpsuits, and more. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, December 26. The exhibition is included with museum admission, which is $23 for adults. Check it out if you’re looking for fun ways to spend time with friends and family visiting for the holidays.

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When animals meet holiday lights.
Phoenix Zoo

ZooLights

Maybe you love strolling around neighborhoods this time of year, checking out a myriad of Christmas lights. You can take it next level at the Phoenix Zoo, 455 North Galvin Parkway, where the ZooLights extravaganza features millions of twinkling lights, animal sculptures, and light shows on the lake. While you’re there, you can also enjoy a fun mix of art, ride the endangered species carousel, and meet Santa and his elves. General admission is $20 but you can also pay for added experiences while you’re there, from holiday eats to camel ride photos. You might get inspired to create or ramp up your own light displays next year, and find that reconnecting with animals and nature was just the break you needed.

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Add some creative time to your life.
Sunshine Craft Co

Make and Mingle

Television commercials for fine jewelry abound this time of year, but there’s more to life than diamonds and fine gold. You can make some amazing holiday memories at Sunshine Craft Co, 700 West Campbell Avenue, where the Make & Mingle Beaded Bracelets class is a chance to indulge your creative side while spending time with people who share your love for making things. You’ll get to choose from a fabulous bead bar while you make a wrist full of stretchy bracelets with fun colors and text. It’s happening from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 28. The class costs $25, and you’ll love rocking your own handmade creations in the new year.

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Remember to be safe out there.
Ray Stern

Wilderness Survival Class

You might be eager to spend more time outdoors amid cooler temperatures, but it always pays to be prepared in case the unexpected happens. You can find yourself in perilous situations even when it’s not 100 degrees outside, which makes taking a Wilderness Survival Class a good choice any time of year. There’s one happening from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, December 29, at Arizona Hiking Shack, 3244 East Thomas Road. The class includes live demonstrations, hands-on exercises, and Q & A session, and more. Expect plenty of practical tips on water, shelter, sleep, food, fire, navigation, and first aid. The course costs $25 and class size is limited, so don’t delay if you want to make outdoor safety a priority this season.