March marks festival season in metro Phoenix, and there are plenty to choose from in our list this week and weekend. Check out plays, some rough and tumble expos and events, and festivals.
3/24-26: Fountain Hills Fine Art and Wine Affaire
Stroll through elegant art displays while enjoying the town’s famous fountain. In addition to the show, take time to visit the surrounding specialty shops, boutiques, galleries, restaurants and outdoor cafes.
Details: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday-Sunday, March 24-26. 16810 E. Avenue of the Fountains, Fountain Hills. $3 admission, $10 wine-tasting ticket. 480-837-5637, thunderbirdartists.com.
Check out the best things to do in metro Phoenix this weekend, including a visit to Westeros, the Dragon Boat Festival and more.
Through 3/26: 61st Annual Pinal County Fair
The Pinal County Fair features tasty fair fare, vendors, a carnival, exhibits, entertainment, junior livestock, 4-H corner and more. Around 20,000 people make their way to Casa Grande for this annual family-friendly event each year.
Details: March 22-26. 4-10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday; 9 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m.-midnight Saturday; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday. Pinal Fairgrounds and Event Center, 512 S. Eleven Mile Corner Road, Casa Grande. $8 for ages 13 and up, $4 for ages 6-12, free for 5 and under. 520-723-7881, pinalfairgrounds.com.
Through 3/26: International Sportsmen’s Expo
WestWorld will transform into a family-friendly, outdoor enthusiast’s wonderland during the International Sportsmen’s Expo. Now in its 18th year, the event features hands-on activities, boats and RVs and exhibits on gear, guides and services for campers, boaters, anglers, hunters and more. A Watersports Pond with wakeboarding, kayak and SUP demos promises to be a fan fave.
Details: March 23-26. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 N. Pima Road, Scottsdale. $14, free for age 15 and under. $5 per car to park. sportsexpos.com.
3/24: Quadraphoenix single release showcase
Alternative rockers Sunset Voodoo have put together a four-band “Quadraphoenix” compilation disc with the Hourglass Cats, the Sink Or Swim and the Real Fits. All four bands are playing the release show, which features both canvas and digital artists to “create an engaging and interactive multi-media experience.” They’ll also hold a raffle, the prizes of which include a live canvas art piece inspired by the music, merch packages and signed event posters. Proceeds from the raffle will go to a non-profit startup called Unity Through Community that seeks to unite all mediums of the arts to build communities with a strong artistic and cultural base.
Details: 8 p.m. Friday, March 24. Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix. $20; $15 in advance. 602-716-2222, crescentphx.com.
3/25: S’more Sweets Festival
Indulge your sweet tooth at this decadent event, where a variety of desserts, candies and baked goods will be available for purchase. A kids’ zone and toddler zone will provide some fun for the little ones, and there will also be live music and other entertainment.
Details: 1-6 p.m. Saturday, March 25. Founders Park, 22407 S. Ellsworth Road, Queen Creek. $5; free for ages 12 and younger. sweetsfest.com.
3/25: Falcon Field Open House
This free family-friendly event includes aircraft flyovers, food and music, as well as Impala Bob’s Classic Car Show. Children’s activities, educational programs and exhibits will be part of the day’s event. Canned food donations will benefit the United Food Bank.
Details: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, March 25. Falcon Field Airport, 4636 E. Fighter Aces Drive, Mesa. Free. 480-644-2450, falconfieldairport.com.
3/25-26: 14th annual Arizona Dragon Boat Festival
Cheer on your favorite colorfully decorated boats as they zip through the water at Tempe Town Lake. Teams will be on hand from across the U.S. and world, racing and honoring a 2,000-plus year tradition. The event also features live entertainment.
Details: 8 a.m. Saturday-Sunday, March 25-26. Tempe Town Lake Marina, North Shore, 550 E. Tempe Town Lake, Tempe. azdba.org.
3/25: Great American Barbecue & Beer Festival
The eighth annual event will feature 60 pitmasters grilling up some delicious ribs, pulled pork, brisket and chicken. There will be a March Madness lounge, grilling demonstrations, a kids’ zone, backyard beer games and a farmers market. Performers include Easton Corbin, Georgia Chrome and Laura Walsh. New this year is the Corral Pass, which includes a bucket of beers, snacks, front stage access, private seating and bathrooms, and autographs from the headlining band. The VIP pass includes those perks plus six alcoholic beverages; catering from Rudy’s Country Store and Bar-B-Q; and $20 to use toward a Yellow Cab ride.
Details: Noon-10 p.m. Saturday, March 25. Downtown Chandler, 178 E. Commonwealth Ave. $15 for general admission; $75 for Corral Pass; $175 for VIP. chandlerbbq.com.
3/25: Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers
Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers spent 2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of “Fizzy Fuzzy Big & Buzzy,” the Refreshments album Clyne looks back on as they’re sure to revisit a number of that album’s highlights when they play the Pool at Talking Stick Resort on Saturday, March 25. But this year is more about getting the fans some new material in the form of the Peacemakers’ first album since “The Independent” hit the streets in 2014.
Details: 8 p.m. Saturday, March 25. The Pool at Talking Stick Resort, 9800 E. Talking Stick Way, Scottsdale. $30-$100. ticketmaster.com.
3/25: Salsa Festival
Salsa chefs will showcase their skills in the competition, and attendees can enjoy food and spirits, and entertainment by local entertainers. Salsa tasting and voting runs until 6:30 p.m. There will also be kids games and activities in the Little Pepper Zone.
Details: 2 p.m.-8 p.m. Saturday, March 25. Copper Sky Regional Park, 44345 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Maricopa. Free, but there is a parking fee of $5, and $5 for ages 3 or older for unlimited playtime in Little Pepper Zone. Free shuttles are available from local elementary schools. maricopa-az.gov/web/salsa-festival.
3/25: Lewis Black
Lewis Black will bring his Rant, White & Blue Tour to Comerica Theatre on Saturday, March 25. The Grammy-winning comedian/actor/author is among the more prolific and popular funnymen working today, performing more than 200 nights a year to sold-out audiences throughout Europe, New Zealand, Canada and the United States. He has released nine comedy albums, including the Grammy-winners “The Carnegie Hall Performance” and “Stark Raving Black,” in addition to writing three bestselling books: “Nothing’s Sacred,” “Me of Little Faith” and “I’m Dreaming of a Black Christmas.” Black has served as an “ambassador for voting rights” for the American Civil Liberties Union since 2013.
Through 3/25: ‘Native Son’
Crime, punishment and racism are the brooding brew in Stray Cat Theatre’s version of the 1940 protest novel by Richard Wright, whose tragic protagonist, Bigger Thomas, is an icon in African-American literature. The stage adaptation, by Chicago actress and playwright Nambi E. Kelley, premiered in 2014 to widespread acclaim.
Details: Through Saturday, March 25. Helen K. Mason Performing Arts Center, 1333 E. Washington St., Phoenix. $20-$30. 480-227-1766, straycattheatre.org.
3/26-26: Anthem Days
Everyone is welcome at Anthem Days, a family-friendly event that features an egg hunt, food and craft vendors, a business expo, live entertainment, a carnival and more. A petting zoo and pony rides are new attractions this year.
Details: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, March 25 and Sunday, March 26. Anthem Community Park, 41703 N. Gavilan Peak Pkwy., Anthem. Free. onlineatanthem.com.
3/26: ‘Game of Thrones’ concert experience
“Game of Thrones” fans can’t go to Westeros, so Westeros is coming to them — in the form of a “live concert experience.” “GoT” composer Ramin Djawadi (“Pacific Rim,” “Iron Man”) will conduct an 80-piece orchestra and choir, but producers also promise an “immersive” experience with giant wall screens and 3D set design surrounding the arena floor. Concept art for the show depicts multi-tiered castle towers with jets of flame on top.
Details: Sunday, March 26. Talking Stick Resort Arena, Second and Jefferson streets, Phoenix. $34.75-$94.75. 602-745-3000, livenation.com.
Through 3/28: Spring training
Spring in Arizona means perfect weather, day drinking and, of course, baseball. Spring training draws huge crowds each year to one of the 10 statewide stadiums and 15 Major League Baseball teams. Tempe Diablo Stadium, where the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim train, and Sloan Park, home of the Chicago Cubs and Colorado Rockies, are ideal for ASU students on the Tempe campus. One of the most popular venues is Scottsdale Stadium, where San Francisco Giants play, because it’s in the heart of downtown Scottsdale. Most of the stadiums have dirt-cheap lawn or bleacher seats, and it’s even cheaper to go during the week.
Through 3/31: Shamrock Farms Farm Tour
Shamrock Farms offers a one-hour guided tour for guests through its real working dairy farm. In March, additional tour times will be offered throughout the week at 1 and 2 p.m. during the spring break season.
Details: Reservations are required, call for times. Through March 31. Shamrock Farms, 40034 W. Clayton Rd., Stanfield. $9, $6 for children. 480-988-1452, www.shamrockfarms.net.
Through 4/2: Arizona Renaissance Festival
It comes every year, and it’s one of the largest Renaissance Festivals in the U.S. — the Arizona Renaissance Festival. Families can enjoy food, drinks, shows, the festival marketplace and jousting. You can dress up with the many characters roaming around area, or you can watch the festival unfold with its usual color and excitement.
Details: 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturday-Sunday and President’s Day, through April 2. Arizona Renaissance Festival, 12601 E. US Highway 60, Gold Canyon. Online tickets are $23 for adults, $13 for children 5-12, free for 5 and under. Box office tickets are $24 for adults, $14 for kids 5-12, free for kids 5 and under, $21 for seniors 60 and over. 520-463-2600, arizona.renfestinfo.com/?.
Through 4/16: ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’
Arizona Broadway Theatre, the big west-side dinner theater, serves up Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1970 rock opera which tells the Good News through the eyes of the ultimate betrayer, Judas Iscariot.
Details: Through Sunday, April 16. Arizona Broadway Theatre, 7701 W. Paradise Lane, Peoria. Call for prices. 623-776-8400, azbroadway.org.
Through 5/29: ‘Planet Shark: Predator or Prey’
Shark Week’s a thing for a reason. People love sharks. Or to be scared of sharks. Either way, the new Arizona Science Center exhibit promises to be cool, with SENSORY4 Technology for a walking, multi-sensory cinematic experience. “Come face-to-face with the great white shark” and “gain a whole new level of respect for the ocean’s oldest predator.” Oh, and get a look-see at the teeth, the jaws and at fossils as old as 370 million years old.
Details: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, through Monday, May 29. Arizona Science Center, 600 E. Washington St., Phoenix. $11.95 adults, $9.95 for children ages 3-17. azscience.org.
Through 7/16: ‘Samurai: Armor From the Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Collection’
More than 140 suits of armor, helmets and face guards, weapons, horse trappings and other battle gear trace the evolution of the distinctive Japanese warrior culture through exquisite workmanship and design. The pieces come from one of the best and largest collections in the world and will be featured in an illustrated catalog featuring essays by experts in samurai armor.
Details: Through July 16. $18; $15 seniors; $13 students with ID; $9 ages 6-17. Admission is free 3-9 p.m. every Wednesday, 6-10 p.m., on First Fridays and the second weekend of every month. 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 10 a.m.-10 p.m. First Fridays; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Wednesdays; and noon-5 p.m. Sundays. Closed Mondays. Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 N. Central Ave. 602-257-1880, www.phxart.org.
Alison Stanton contributed to this article.
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