Chili & Chocolate Festival.
Courtesy of Christ Community Church
The age old question: Is chili chocolate spicy and sweet, or sweet and spicy? Maybe it doesn’t matter when you’re 10 handfuls deep and can’t taste anything anymore. The Christ Community Church is hosting their fundraiser, with multiple chili and chocolate items where you get to taste samples and vote for the winner. The event also features a jumping castle, face painting, and every ticket includes a punch card that offers a variety of chili and chocolate samples, and drinks. 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, March 8. 530 S. Pantano Road. $15 for adults and $7.50 for children. Details here.
The Willie Green Project.
Willie Green just graduated from Loyola University in 2015, but considering he’s been playing the drums since his early childhood, perhaps it’s not surprising that he’s already played at jazz festivals all over the world, and is now on tour with his jazz group for their debut album, Love Will Find A Way. Green drums and composes, while Taylor Mroski plays bass, Andrew McGowan plays piano and Trevarri Huff-Boone is on sax. Together, they make up some of New Orleans’ most promising young talent. 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 8. Sea of Glass–Center for the Arts, 330 E. Seventh St. $13 advance/$18 day of show for ages 16 and up. $10 advance/$15 day of show for ages 12 to 15. $4 for ages 4 to 11. Details here.
Tucson Hip Hop Festival.
Did you know the four fundamental pillars of hip hop culture are DJing, MCing, breakdancing (or b-boying) and writing? If you know, you know, and if you didn’t, now you do. Everyone involved with the Tucson Hip Hop Festival is passionate about hip hop and about representing and showcasing these four pillars. At this weekend full of movie screenings, panel talks, fundraising, local vendors & food, photography, and beat production, you’ll find yourself right at the intersection of learning and partying. And really, what more could you ask for? 6 to 10 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at La Pilita, 420 S. Main Ave.; 7 to 11 p.m. Thursday, March 7, at Monsoon Collective, 127 S. Fifth Ave.; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, March 8, at Hotel Congress, 311 Congress St.; noon to midnight Saturday, March 9, at 191 Toole. $10 to $100, depending on which events you attend. Details here.
Gomez Plays Mozart.
Maestro José Luis Gomez seems to like Tucson—after all, he just signed an extension to his original four-year contract with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra, so he’ll be here until at least 2024. He said in a press release, “In these first two seasons we have made such great music together, why would we want to stop?” Don’t miss his Tucson performing debut as first violin in Mozart’s Serenade for Strings. The night also feature’s Mozart’s “Nacht Musique,” and Haydn’s “Drumroll,” the second movement of which was so popular at its premiere in the 18th century that it was performed twice. 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 8, 2 and 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 9 and 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 10. Catalina Foothills High School, 4300 E. Sunrise Drive. $27 to $64+. Details here.
Tucson Roadrunners vs. Ontario Reign.
Courtesy of Tucson Symphony Orchestra
This week, the Tucson Roadrunners are at an admitted disadvantage: The rival team’s mascot is a snow leopard, and snow leopards are much more in their element in icy environments than roadrunners. But realistically, our home team has more wins under their belt than Ontario Reign. So come take your pick of when to watch the Roadrunners strut their stuff on the ice: Friday is Arizona Daily Star Community Night, where the first 2,000 fans buying individual tickets get ’em for 10 bucks, and Saturday is Shane Doan Bobblehead Night, where everyone gets a Shane Doan Bobblehead, and they’re running a Roadrunners Party Pack special (two center ice tickets + two beers for $59). 7:05 p.m. on Friday, March 8, and Saturday, March 9. Tucson Arena, 260 S. Church Ave. $7 to $61. Details here.
Dance & Dessert 2019.
Courtesy of Ballet Tucson
You’re bound to like at least one of those two things. And, with a troupe of dancers as talented as the men and women over at Ballet Tucson, you’re bound to like both. At their spring concert, see the premiere of La Dame aux Camélias, a show that brings Alexandre Dumas’ 1848 novel to life on stage. The Tucson premiere of Donizetti Variations, with music from the opera Don Sebastian and choreography by George Balanchine, the father of modern ballet, is another part of the night to look forward to. The dancers will also perform other selections from their repertoire, and the audience can enjoy gourmet dessert tastings at the conclusion of each performance. 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 8. 2 and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 9. 1 p.m. on Sunday, March 10. Stevie Eller Dance Theatre, 1737 E. University Blvd. $45 GA or $40 for seniors/students/military. Details here.
Lookin’ for a night of clean comedy, and the chance to step outside (but not too far outside) Tucson? Look no farther than the Marana Laughs comedy showcase. We’ve got Mike James, who’s appeared on Comedy Central and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, who likes to make audiences laugh about family, faith, work and aging. Then, Brian Kohatsu, who spent 20 years as a film director before starting his comedy career, and has now been teaching improv for more than a decade, will take the stage. 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 8 (doors open at 6:30). Coyote Trail Stage, 8000 N. Silverbell Road. $10 individual, $20 VIP, $30 family package, $97 for 13 people. Details here.
So how, exactly, did Hollywood release a fantasy movie where a bunch of people with actual medical dwarfism played magical dwarves? Well, it was the ’80s, for one. And the film’s producer/writer George Lucas had recently finished the ewok-filled Return of the Jedi, so he had more money imaginable to throw at literally whatever he wanted, even if it turned out to be one of the most ridiculous sword-and-sorcery-and-slapstick-early-computer-graphics-mishmash ever set to film. It turned out to be a pretty fun film, too. Casa Video invites you in on the wonder. 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, March 8. 2905 E. Speedway Blvd. Details here.
Spring Vegetable Start Sale.
Courtesy of Spring Vegetable Start Sale Facebook page
These days, it can seem like people forget that you can grow your own food, literally right out of the dirt. Tucson Village Farm is helping you to start your own vegetable garden, just in time for winter’s end! They’ll be selling varieties of tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and basil. 8 to 11 a.m. Saturday, March 9. 4210 N. Campbell Ave. Details here.
Hosted by Tucson Foodie, this boutique festival celebrates female culinary artists and makers all throughout Southern Arizona. Here, you get to enjoy our region’s greatest female chefs and mixologists. Food vendors include BOCA Tacos, Nook, Ghini’s French Caffe, Chef Chic, HUB and more. All profits generated from ticket sales will be donated to the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona’s programs training and supporting women in the culinary arts. 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 9. At the Tucson Historic Train Depot. 400 N. Toole Ave. $25. Details here.
SAAF STARZ MARCH 2019.
The Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation and Corbett Brewery are teaming up for a fundraiser that puts SAAF staff in drag “under the tutelage of established drag queens from our local community.” All money raised at SAAF STARZ goes directly to the programs and services of the Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation. And at the same time, you get to enjoy the craft beers of Corbett Brewery. 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, March 9. 309 E. Seventh St. Details here.
Free Mead Tasting at Caps & Corks.
Mead is an alcoholic beverage created by fermenting honey with water, but you might know it better as that stuff Vikings were always drinking. If you’ve always wanted to try it, now’s your chance! Superstition Meadery is coming to Caps & Corks, offering up complimentary samplings of a variety of meads. 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, March 9. 3830 W. River Road. Details here.
The Art and Life of E.A. Smith.
Courtesy of Free Mead Tasting At Caps & Corks in Tucson Facebook event page
It’s easy to love the colors of the desert, but difficult to describe them. It is harder still to capture their beauty in a piece of art. Mrs. E.A. Smith, Arizona’s first nationally known impressionist landscape painter, spent more than five and a half decades living in and painting the desert and mountain vistas of Cochise County. This year would have been her 150th birthday, and to celebrate, the Tucson Desert Art Museum is displaying some of her paintings, including many that have not been shown publicly in Tucson since the 1930s. The exhibition, “Effie! Plein Air Pioneer” is on display through April 28, but this Saturday, enjoy a talk by columnist Jan Cleere and EA Smith Archive curator Steve Carlson. 2 p.m. Saturday, March 9. Tucson Desert Art Museum, 7000 E. Tanque Verde Road. Included with admission: $10 adults, $8 seniors, $6 students, $4 youth, free for members. Details here.
Children’s Day Festival.
Courtesy of Yume Japanese Gardens of Tucson
Japan has been celebrating the strengths and personalities of children, as well as wishing for their good health, with this holiday since 1948. Though it actually falls on May 5, Yume Japanese Gardens is holding it early to beat the Tucson heat. So bring the children in your life for a day full of enjoying nature; traditional Japanese decorations and dress, game and activities; and plenty of savory Japanese snacks. Why wouldn’t you want to celebrate the innocence, brightness and sense of wonder that come with childhood? 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 9. Yume Japanese Gardens, 2130 N. Alvernon Way. $15 adults, $5 for kids ages 3 to 15. Details here.
This Pulitzer Prize-winning opera, with music by Kevin Puts and a libretto by Mark Campbell, takes place during World War I. And not just any ol’ day during World War I:
It takes place on Christmas Eve, 1914, the date of the Christmas truce, during which 100,000 soldiers briefly put aside their weapons in no-man’s land. This exploration of the human cost of war is worth singing about—in five different languages, no less. Don’t miss the Arizona Opera’s production of the show! 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 9 and 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 10. Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. $25 to $120. Details here.
Courtesy of Arizona Theatre Company
In this play by José Cruz González, Lucha is looking for a way to break free from the monotony of caring for her sick mother. And what’s less monotonous than starting your own mariachi band? The only problem? It’s the 1970s, and girls can’t be mariachis. Instead of dropping the idea, Lucha and her cousin face disapproving relatives, the struggle to find other bandmates, and practices and performances when they decide to start an all-girl mariachi band anyway. Heartwarming, hilarious and full of kick-ass live mariachi music, this show is a must-see at Arizona Theatre Company. Runs Saturday, March 9, through Saturday, March 30, with shows at either 2, 7 or 7:30 p.m. throughout the week. Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. $41 to $66. (Or $25 to $50 for preview shows). Details here.
Laugh About It.
There are some people who tell you to laugh at life’s problems instead of cry over them, and there are some people who say that who make you want to punch them in the face. What do they know? Well, Josh Novey is an Iraq war veteran, so he has good standing to talk about facing hardship and laughing in spite of it. He’s performed his clean comedy act all over the United States, and now it’s yours and your family’s turn to see him live. Paul Loh hosts and comedian Ali Musa is also featured. 7 to 9 p.m. (doors open at 6:30 and lobby opens at 6) Saturday, March 9. The Screening Room, 127 E. Congress St. $20. Details here.
This latest documentary series by Mixed Media Machine aims at connecting “people and their lands through shared understanding and exploration.” The screening highlights Iceland, and a pre-Medieval Trans-Icelandic route. Hosted by Trans Cycles, this also helps raise funds for World Bicycle Relief and Iceland Search and Rescue. While you might not be able to bicycle through Iceland right now, you can live vicariously through those who do. 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, March 9. At the MSA Annex. $10. Details here.
Here’s your opportunity to be a hero as well! The Tucson Atheist Community Outreach Team is hosting an event at Roadhouse Cinemas with proceeds benefiting Emerge Center Against Domestic Abuse. The TACO team invites you to “see a fun movie with a bunch of heathens and help be a hero to those who need it most.” 1:30 to 6 p.m. Saturday, March 9. 4811 East Grant Road. $25. Details here.
Gran Fondo Block Party.
Of course Tucson’s a great cycling city, so the more bike-centric events we have, the better! This inaugural ride, hosted by Ten55 Brewing and Sausage House and Greater Arizona Bicycling Association, concludes with a block party on Scott Avenue. Delicacies include beer, brats and live music, and a portion of the proceeds from the event will be donated to the American Diabetes Association. 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 10. Scott Avenue between Broadway and Congress Street. Details here.
Catalina Craft Pizza Second Anniversary Celebration.
Has it been two years already? The far north side is celebrating their favorite pizza/pasta/performance place. The event features a special menu of ethnic pizzas (Portuguese Pizza, Asian Pizza, and Jamaican Jerk Chicken Pizza) and an hourly raffle. 3 to 8 p.m. Sunday, March 10. 15930 North Oracle Road. Details here.
The All Artists Show.
The Madaras Gallery is celebrating 20 years of art and philanthropy this year, which gives you a perfect chance to look back on the art Diana Madaras has created over the years, and to hear from her about her plans for the future. At this show, she’ll be unveiling five new Spirit Animal paintings from her 20-piece series, inspired by her passion for helping animals. This also makes for a great opportunity to finally treat yourself to a Madaras original, so you can feel like a true Tucsonan. This show will also feature small works from six guest artists. 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, March 10. Madaras Gallery, 3035 N. Swan Road. Free. Details here.
Second SundAZe Family Day at TMA.
Another second Sunday of the month means another chance to head over to the Tucson Museum of Art for a free admission day! This month, help the museum celebrate its 95th birthday, making it the same age as Marlon Brando would be, if he were still around. Spend the day creating birthday-themed art, and enjoy a workshop in dance, costume-making and theatrical performance from Artifact Dance Project. Head on over to the museum! It’s only going to turn 95 once. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, March 10. Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block, 140 N. Main Ave. Free. Details here.
Scholl and Karamazov: Airs and Fancies.
Courtesy of Tucson Museum of Art
Andreas Scholl is one of the world’s leading countertenors, and has numerous awards, including the ECHO Award for his composition for an audiobook of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Emperor’s New Clothes” and “The Nightingale.” Edin Karamazov was once a classical guitarist, but now is more known for his virtuosic performances on the Baroque lute, garnering rave reviews throughout Europe and America. At this event, they team up on works by Dowland, Campion, Handel, Caccini and Bach, as well as some folk music for added variety. 3 p.m. Sunday, March 10. Grace St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 2331 E. Adams St. $25. Details here.
Tucson Sugar Skulls vs. Bismarck Bucks.
Courtesy of Tucson Sugar Skulls
There are only a few teams in the United States’ indoor football league, and the Tucson Sugar Skulls is the newest one of them. Named for the colorful skulls used to celebrate the lives of lost loved ones in central Mexico (and in the Old Pueblo’s All Souls Procession), the team is all about honor, celebration and tradition. This week, they face off against the Bismarck Bucks, who are also pretty new to the league, in a home game. It says this on the Bucks’ own website, so we shouldn’t be shy in announcing that the buck stops here, because the Sugar Skulls are going to stop it. 3 p.m. Sunday, March 10. Tucson Arena, 260 S. Church Ave. $17 to $99+. Details here.
Events compiled by Briannon Wilfong, Emily Dieckman, B.S. Eliot and Jeff Gardner.