Five Things to Eat and Drink this Weekend in Metro Phoenix

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Looking for something to put in your mouth this weekend? We've got you covered. Check out what's on our plate.

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Arizona Matsuri

Break out the Hello Kitty chopsticks and dry-clean that kimono because Arizona Matsuri, the 29th Annual Festival of Japan, is returning to Historic Heritage Square this Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Celebrating all things native and notable to Japan, the two-day festival will feature omochi (rice cake) pounding demonstrations, Japanese lion dances, Japanese swordsmanship, karaoke, cosplay, karate, a ramune drinking contest, Japanese tea ceremony demonstrations, and more. The festival also will have plenty of food vendors on site, including: Arai Pastry, Asahi Bakery, Blue Fin, and Roka Akor. For more details and a full schedule of events, visit Arizona Matsuri online.

Battle of the Bartenders at Crescent Ballroom

Forget the Oscars; here's a competition you can really drink to this weekend. The Fourth Annual Battle of the Bartenders, presented by Devour Phoenix and Arroyo Vodka, will be happening this Sunday at Crescent Ballroom from 4 to 6 p.m. It's a mixology showdown featuring some of Phoenix's finest bartenders, including Bruce Heimbuck (Crescent Ballroom), Matt Tobey (District American Kitchen), John Hopkins (Hula's Modern Tiki), Jane Davidson (Maizie's Cafe), Joshua James (Parlor Pizzeria), Kyle Landry (Shady's Fine Ales and Cocktails), Zachariah Gillespie (St. Francis), and Matt Farrow (The Windsor). Admission is $10 and can be purchased online. For more information visit the Fourth Annual Devour Bartending Competition on Facebook.

Eating Alabama Screening at Arizona Science Center

Turn up the Lynyrd Skynyrd and head over to the Arizona Science Center this Saturday at 5 p.m. for a screening of Eating Alabama. Part of the Science Center's ongoing series, Chew on This!, Eating Alabama is a documentary about a young couple who reclaims their roots in Alabama with the goal of eating food in the style of simpler times -- locally and seasonally, that is. Suffice it to say, discoveries are made and lessons are learned as the film shines a light on topics of community, the South, and sustainability. Admission is free and local slow food advocates Natalie Morris (Good Food Allies) and Maya Dailey (Maya's Farm) will lead a Q&A session after the show. For more information, visit the Arizona Science Center online.

Cooking Wild Game with Scott Leysath at the International Sportsmen's Expo

Calling all adventurous eaters, the Phoenix International Sportsmen's Expo is in Glendale through Sunday at University of Phoenix Stadium. Offering a show floor of hunting, fishing and travel based-goods, the main attraction at this weekend expo will be Dead Meat host and "Sporting Chef" Scott Leysath, who'll be hosting seminars (Friday at 4:30 p.m. and Saturday at 12:30 p.m.) on cooking wild game and discussing some of his most adventurous dishes, such as elk, wild boar, and rabbit-rattlesnake sausage. Admission is $12. For a full listing of exhibitors, seminars, and more, visit the Sportsmen's Expo online.

Songbird Saturday Concert Series

Local music meets local restaurants in Songbird Coffee and Tea House's new monthly event, Songbird Saturday Concert Series. This Saturday from 6 to 10 p.m., enjoy free live music from Phoenix and Tucson-based acts Russian Arms & Optics, Bear State, Steff Koeppen & The Articles, and Good Friends Great Enemies in the lot between Second and Third streets, off Roosevelt Row. While you're there, grab some grub from Luncha Libre food truck or stop by participating businesses Angel's Trumpet Ale House and Carly's Bistro for food and drink discounts throughout the night. All you need to receive a discount is your stamp from the show. For more information, including restaurants specials and the performance schedule, visit the Songbird Saturday Concert Series on Facebook.

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