guide to keeping busy in the Old Pueblo.
Nature & Plants
Desert Cacti Garden Workshop
. Embrace the heat already and turn your backyard into a desert wonderland! Join Catalina and Green Things for a free class to learn how to make a cacti garden. Bring a pot (or purchase one there) and learn the dos and don'ts of how to keep a cactus alive. This free class will only pay for supplies used during the demonstration, the rest is all up to you. RSVP on their Facebook event so the crew knows how much supplies to provide. 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 20. Green Things, 3384 E. River Rd. Free but bring money to buy more materials after the class.
Reid Park Zoo Summer Safari
. After-hour summer fun is returning to the zoo. Yessir! You'll dig live music, family friendly animal features, special dining options and discounts in the gift shop. Bring a blanky and enjoy the outdoor concert (there’ll be beer or wine for purchase, but no drinking with the monkeys). Among other activities, you’ll be able to chat with zoo keepers and encounter cool animals—but remember, animals who want their evening privacy may be in for the night, while others will be out and about. It all starts this week with music by The Just Intervals as the zoo walks us through "The Bear Necessities." The festivities begin Friday, May 19 and continue every Friday through Aug. 4. 6-8 p.m. Reid Park Zoo, 3400 Zoo Court. $3-$25.
International Museum Day
. Into going on a safari? Tucson is a little low on savannas and jungles for you to traverse, but you can get a similar (and slightly more ... dead) vibe up on the west side. Take advantage of International Museum Day with all-day free admission to the International Wildlife Museum! 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. Thursday, May 18. International WIldlife Museum, 4800 W. Gates Pass Rd. Free.
Beautiful Beneficial Bean Trees
. There’s food all around us—do you know where to find it? Meet the mesquite, ironwood and palo verde trees. These trees create rich environments under their canopies where both plants and animals survive and thrive. Head down to the Co-Op to learn more about the wonders of those tasty pods. 6-8 p.m. Monday, May 22. Food Conspiracy Co-Op, 412 N. Fourth Ave. $10. Register online with 24 hours notice.
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
. Summer in the desert means a lot of things—but mainly, it means avoiding the outdoors until after sunset. Every Thursday through August, head over to the Tucson Museum of Art in the evening for some cinematic delight courtesy of Cinema La Placita. Bonus: Cafe a la C'Art will be open, offering a special menu for movie night. This week, watch Paul Newman and Robert Redford deal with life on the run after a series of robberies. “The future's all yours, you lousy bicycles!” 7:30 p.m., May 18. Tucson Museum of Art, 140 N. Main Ave.
Girlfriend From Hell
. The Loft’s Mondo Monday series is always worth attending, but the cinema has perhaps outdone itself celebrating the return of Twin Peaks and it’s star’s ridiculous early films. This Monday brings us the story of a shy young woman, possessed by the devil and forced to seduce men and steal their souls. See Dana Ashbrook (Your Bobby Riggs) ‘Chasing’ down Liane Curtis’ Maggie in this silly, less the subtle comedy-horror film.
Fun in General
Cars, Karts and Coffee
. Who says Go Karting ain’t for adults? A little competition is always a good thing—and going fast is hella fun. If you haven't hit up Autobahn Indoor Speedway yet, you're missing out. Enjoy a reduced price of $24 for two races around the track and fuel up with a warm cup of coffee before you hit it! 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Sunday, May 21. Autobahn Indoor Speedway and Events, 300 S. Toole Ave. $24.
4th Annual Summer Reading Kick-Off with Pima County Library
. Summer reading is important, especially here in Tucson where you can only spend an hour outside before suffering dehydration and a serious sunburn. Get the kiddos excited to tackle their library stack when you bring the whole family for a free children's book giveaway and tour the library's Bookmobile. Your youngsters will even get a visit from a famous monkey, Curious George! 7 p.m. - 9 p.m. on Saturday, May 20. Tanque Verde Swap Meet, 4100 S. Palo Verde Rd. Free.
Band of Horses
. Sweet-voiced bandleader Ben Bridwell pens tunes that effortlessly blend elements of The Band with soaring pop of, say, Big Star, and some good-old southern rock like Marshall Tucker Band (yes, the MTB!) But they sound wholly up-to-the-moment, as they should. Bridwell recently told Tucson Weekly what he remembers about his formative teen years living in Tucson in the mid-'90: "Fucking outrunning trains with my car while delivering pizzas on mushrooms. I got the cops called on me and they drew their shotguns when I shut down the fratbar's power every night." So now you have an idea what to expect if you didn't already know that Band of Horses songs "Casual Party” and "Larado" are two of the ten best pop songs released in the last decade. Truth. Let's hope that two recently departing band members won't diminish the band. (See the music feature
in this week’s ish.) Tuesday, May 23, at the Rialto Theatre. $30-$35. All ages.
. Since 1991, Osaka, Japan's Shonen Knife has blended the hard riff rock of Thin Lizzy and The Runaways with simple Ramones-y melodies, added dollops of Shirelles/Ronettes girl-group magic, and kneaded it all into an infectious rock 'n' roll din, while (re)defining how women, particularly Asian women, are viewed in rock 'n' roll and in society. Yes, these women advanced rock 'n' roll as a female cultural force and have not received the respect they deserve. Now, a full 20 studio albums later, they are still kicking ass but not taking names because, well, they don't need to know your name. You just need to know theirs. Tuesday, May 23, at 191 Toole.
Food, Booze, and Food Business
Arizona Food and Finance Forum
. Tucson is a great place to eat—but every restaurateur has to take a moment to put their recipe book down and think about their business. Everyone who contributes to Arizona's local food system are invited to gather, network and learn new skills at this event. Nationally-recognized speakers will be presenting on critical topics such as: farming, food system development, local food marketing, building local and living economies, bridging the gap between farmers, local food entrepreneurs and access to capital. Get growing! 8 a.m. Thursday to 1 p.m. Friday. Thursday, May 18 - Friday, May 19. University of Arizona Institute of the Environment, ENR2 Building, 1064 E. Lowell St. $59-$99.
Coloring and Beer Nights
. Adult coloring books are not—I repeat, NOT—a trend. They’re here to stay. They’re a useful tool for calming down and flexing those artistic muscles your boring office job completely ignores. Every Tuesday, grab a beer at Casa’s film bar, and bring an extra $5 for a desert-themed coloring book and a little peace of mind. The bar provides the crayons, and won’t give you any side eye if your strokes don’t stay within the lines. 5-8 p.m. Every Tuesday. Casa Video Film Bar, 2905 E. Speedway Blvd.
Las Adelitas Meet and Greet with Felicia Chew
. Politically, things are a little rough right now. Let's keep all the horrors of The Handmaid's Tale categorized safely as fiction and speak out about challenges facing the community. Las Adelitas works to help engage Latinas in the political process, and you're invited to meet and chat with Ward 3 candidate Felicia Chew on her most important platform issues. 5:30-7 p.m. on Friday, May 19. Monterey Court Studio Galleries and Cafe, 505 W. Miracle Mile. Free.
California Modern with Mark Mussari
. Even though we’ve reached the epitome of style with Southwest design, it can’t hurt to check out what California has going on. Art and design writer Mark Mussari will expose patrons to the development of California Modernism as its European roots evolved through the post-war artists movement. The presentation will occur alongside the Etherton Gallery’s Color Theory exhibit featuring local artists Kate Breakey, Andry Burgess and Gail Maruc-Orlen. Tune in to the talk at 7 p.m. Friday, May 19. Etherton Gallery, 135 S. Sixth Ave. Free.