It’s a weekend of cars, fashion and art around the Phoenix metro area.And a good place to begin is at the free Spark! Mesa’s Festival of Creativity at Mesa Arts Center in Mesa on Saturday and Sunday.

There will be an exhibit of 16 art cars, live music, dance performances, live art making, demonstrations, hands-on experiences and more.

“It is always our hope that people will find the Spark! Festival both engaging and entertaining, but also that they walk away feeling curious and inspired to explore their own creativity,” says Casey Blake, Mesa Arts Center director of public relations.

See cars and motorcycles as art in the grand arrival of the art cars and cycles at 11:30 a.m. Saturday.

Festival-goers will be able to add to one of the art cars that is all about the flora and fauna of the Sonoran Desert. The exterior of the car will be covered with cactuses and succulents created out of metal, glass and paint. The interior will be the work of visitors to the festival.

Patrons will also be invited to participate in the community still-life in clay. Guests will be given colorful clay and be asked to make food that they associate with family tradition. The clay foods will be added to a clay dining table. By the end of the festival the table will be piled high with colorful dishes.

Aerial dancers will perform in the courtyard with several of the featured art cars, and a Night Garden with an illuminated landscape will be created for guests to walk through.

Those attending this event can try a one-hour studio art class ($10) led by Mesa Arts Center teaching artists. Workshops will include ceramic plates, raku ceramics, flame-worked beads, fusing glass tile, watercolor, improv, enameling on metal and acrylics.

Details: Noon-11 p.m. Saturday, March 17; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, March 18. Mesa Arts Center, One E. Main St., Mesa. Free.

Goodguys Spring Nationals

If you didn’t get your fill of interesting cars at Spark!, check out Goodguys ninth Spring Nationals for all things vintage.

Held at WestWorld of Scottsdale Friday through Sunday, this event will have more than 2,500 hot rods, customs, classics, muscle cars and trucks through 1987.

The event is more than just a car show. Along with vendor and manufacturer exhibits, there will be a swap meet where shoppers can get hard-to-find auto parts, memorabilia or even a vehicle. There will be gauges, tires, wheels, vehicle frames, fenders, shop signs and even vintage auto toys.

The Kids Zone will feature free arts and crafts, games and prizes. Check out the model and pedal car show or let your kids partake in the free Revell model car make-and-take station.

Enjoy music from The JJs Band and The Instant Classics or have a meal at AutoCross Bar and Grill.

Complimentary guest shuttles are provided from the spectator parking lot. Parking is $5 per vehicle.

Details: March 16-18. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday. WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 N. Pima Road. $20, $6 for ages 7-12, free for age 6 and younger.

Artlink Art Detour

Get your art fix at the free community celebration Artlink Art Detour, which takes place throughout downtown Phoenix Thursday through Sunday.

The event will feature open studios and galleries, where guests can meet the artists while they give talks and demonstrations. There will also be self-guided trolley tours, street art, pop-up galleries, hands-on activities for families, live performances and more.

Art Detour aims to highlight the influence of the arts in developing downtown Phoenix. More than 100 studios, galleries and other venues will be on the tour for guests to enjoy. 

Children can take part in the Kids’ Detour, which highlights family-friendly activities.

Thursday night is the Art d’Core Gala featuring acclaimed Phoenix artists and an auction.

Friday through Sunday is the detour through Roosevelt Row, the Warehouse District, Central Arts District, Historic Grand Avenue and the core of downtown Phoenix.

Trolleys will be available to shuttle visitors among the neighborhoods, or feel free to explore on your own.

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Details: March 15-18. 6-9 p.m. Thursday, 6-10 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 6-10 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday. Throughout downtown Phoenix. Free.

On Central Fashion and Art Weekend

The On Central fashion weekend event coincides with the Artlink Art Detour in downtown Phoenix. Running Friday through Sunday, On Central will take place at CityScape and showcase the most talented fashion designers, artists and trendsetters in Phoenix.

Presented by The Garment League, On Central will allow event goers to explore fashion collections from nationally and locally recognized designers. Relevant and affordable emerging brands will be available for savvy consumers. There will be pop-up shops and live music.

The event will feature children’s and adult fashion shows, live art, photography exhibits and dance performances.

The Garment League will honor Angela Johnson with its Fashion Humanitarian Award for her efforts in bringing fashion education, design, manufacturing and fabric resources to Arizona. Johnson is the founder of Label Horde and co-founder of FABRIC, Tempe’s fashion incubator.

Proceeds from the event benefit Amanda Hope Rainbow Angels, whose mission is to bring dignity and comfort to those suffering with childhood cancer.

Details: Friday-Sunday, March 16-18. CityScape, 1 E. Washington St., Phoenix. $25-$150.


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