Summers of Fire: Author Talk with Linda Strader. Back in the '70s, Linda Strader was one of the first women to work on a fire crew for the U.S. Forest Service in the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson. She later went on to write Summers of Fire: A Memoir of Adventure, Love and Courage, all about her experiences trying to advance in a career where women weren't always considered worthy. At this talk, Strader (who is also a landscape architect, watercolor artist and certified arborist!) will talk about her book and some of the challenges women on fire crews face even today. 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday, June 29. Oro Valley Public Library, 1305 W. Naranja Dr. Free.
Monsoon Gardening Workshop. Did you know some gardeners call monsoon season "second spring" because it's a traditional time to plant many veggies in the desert? Well, now you do! If you're a newbie desert gardener, or if you're a well-versed green thumb who would just like a refresher course on the perils, pitfalls and possibilities of monsoon planting, this workshop is for you. What veggies and herbs can you plant? How can you maximize rainwater? How can you protect your garden from the heat and wind? Register today—you get a variety of monsoon-ready seeds to take home and plant if you attend! 9 to 11 .m. Thursday, June 27. Native Seeds Search Conservation Center, 3584 E. River Road. $20 Native Seeds members, $25 nonmembers.
In From the Heat. Yes, the heat of summer is upon us, but you know what that means: The summer portion of the Catalina Organ Festival is upon us as well! This year, we've got Maxine Thévenot and Edmund Connolly in from Albuquerque, New Mexico, an organist duo also known as Air & Hammers. Connolly is also an opera singer who's performed as a baritone soloist all over the world, while Thévenot's playing has been described as a "masterful manipulation of the instrument's myriad tonal colors." They'll be playing work by Josef Rheinberger, Clara Schumann, Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck and more. Noon. Saturday, June 29. Catalina United Methodist Church, 2700 E. Speedway Blvd. $10.
Learn Something New
Be the Rising Tide: Employee Ownership and Profit Sharing. Is this the way you would have spent a Thursday night when you were in college and your drink of choice was a straight shot of Fireball? No. But, if you have a little bit more responsibility (and a little bit more susceptibility to hangovers) now, this event sponsored by Local First Arizona and Conscious Capitalism might just be super useful. It's geared toward businesses and organizations interested in profit sharing and employee ownership, or who are contemplating succession planning. 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, June 27. Goodmans Furniture, 3925 N. Business Center Dr. $10 for Local First Arizona and Friends of Conscious Capitalism member, $15 for nonmembers.
Music & Comedy
June Bachata Social ft. DJ FnF. Bachata originated in the Dominican Republic to go along with the rhythmic, often sexy Bachata music. This one-hour class will have sections for both beginners and intermediate-level dancers, and will be followed by a social with more dancing and fun. Mohankumar Ns leads the beginner class and Bachadicto Fnf leads the intermediate class. You'll hear the best of Salsa, Bachata, Timba, Kizomba and more. Classes are from 8:50 to 10 p.m. and social is from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Friday, June 28. Tucson Creative Dance Center, 3131 N. Cherry Ave. $10 for class and social, $7 for social only. Bring dance shoes if possible, for the wooden floor!
Rhymes and Poetry (RAP). Tucson-based hip hop record label UG Desert Artists was started in 2018 by Benny Loc and Phase Cre8tions to build a community through art and event hosting. Here's one such event, serving up spoken word poetry and conscious hip hop to take your Saturday night to the next level. Performers include Benny Loc, Ill V, trahma, Nathan Villins, Solo and Sid LC. 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday, June 29. The Elder Hookah Lounge, 2900 E. Broadway Blvd., Ste. 118. $5 at the door.
Bach Without Borders. You've heard of Bach, one of the most famous composers ever, right? But have you heard his music played without borders? At this show, husband and wife duo Bin Hu and Jing Xia will be performing their interpretations of Bach's music, with Bin on classical guitar and Jing on the Guzheng, a Chinese stringed instrument. And they're not just performing Bach – Isaac Albeniz, Stephen Goss, and Chenyu Hunag and Wang Zhou are also on the program. Treat yourself to a night that will be equal parts relaxing and awe-inspiring. 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, June 30. Grace St. Paul's Episcopal Church. $15 GA, $10 student.
F*ST! Presents: It's a Tucson Thing. You know 'em, you love 'em. Female Storytellers is a league of women, femmes and trans folks who make their voices heard—and make their audiences laugh—by sharing their stories. The group will be sharing stories all about what makes our city what it is? Saguaros? Potholes? Eegees? Mattress firms? The feeling you get looking up at the clouds in the evening after a day of work with the evening stretched out before you? Hear it firsthand. 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday, June 27. Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St. $8.
Comedians Who Aren't Boys. Not only are women, nonbinary people and other non-men funny, but they're funny at TWO separate events this week in Tucson alone. Imagine that! Head on over to Hotel McCoy (you should head over to check it out anyway!) to see Autumn Horvat, Mo Urban, Chinna Garza, Rebecca Tingley, Priscilla Fernandez, Nicole Riesgo and Cierra Renee Amanda take the stage and make you laugh. Enjoy the local beer and wine, plus eats from the Mexican food truck Pinches. All ages, but recommended for 18+. 8 to 10 p.m. Friday, June 28. Hotel McCoy, 720 W. Silverlake Road. Free.
Cool Summer Nights: Creatures of the Night. During summer, many of the college students that take to the streets of Tucson so often at night head home, away from the UA campus. But there are still lots of creatures roaming around at night in the desert, like bats, owls and kangaroo rats. Learn more about them in two presentations at the Desert Museum at this Saturday evening event. The night also features Native American-inspired flute music, the feather carving art of Chris Maynard, specialty cocktails, stingray touching and the chance to climb around the Packrat Playhouse. 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 29. Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Road. $21.95 GA, $19.95 seniors 65+, $8.95 for kids 3 to 12, free for kids under 3, $17.95 for active or retired military, $16.95 for Arizona/Sonora residents.
Flashback Friday Nights at Old Tucson. You're not going to get the kids to bed at a reasonable hour during the summer anyway, so you might as well take 'em somewhere fun and free. Every Friday night through August, Old Tucson will be open from 4 to 9 p.m., free for kids 11 and under. Enjoy their signature entertainment, plus food and drinks specials that they're whipping up just for this sunset time. Just think of how fondly you and your kid will look back on summer evenings spent wandering around the Wild West. 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 28. Old Tucson, 201 S. Kinney Road. Adult admission is $19.95.
Summer Safari Saturday Nights. You know when you've had a long, stressful week, and you treat yourself to something relaxing, like a bath, a pedicure or a massage? Sometimes the animals at the zoo deserve to be pampered, too. And pampered they are! From rhinos and elephants to tortoises, vultures and anteaters, the animals featured on this night at the zoo enjoy rituals like pedicures, manicures and mud baths. Learn all about it this evening! Michael P. and the Gullywashers provide the live music, and there will be plenty of games, activities, and food and drink specials. 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, June 29. Reid Park Zoo, 3400 Zoo Ct. $10.50 adults, $8.50 seniors, $6.50 kids ages 2 to 14 and free for zoo members.
Western Month at the Madaras Gallery. As the gallery continues its celebration of 20 years, they're featuring a different theme every month. For July, it's all about that western vibe. From cowboys to cowboy hats, from horses to saddles, walking through this exhibit will have you singing "Happy Trails To You." Get your butt over to the gallery to see some buttes. Why would you want to miss out on an air-conditioned gallery full of art? July 1-31. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 am. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Madaras Gallery, 3035 N. Swan Road. Free entry.
Summer in the Philabaum Gallery. Tom Philabaum and his wife have operated this glass art gallery in a former Tastee Freez building since 1985, and man are we lucky to have such a cool space in Tucson. From jewelry to vases to cups to insanely intricate decorative pieces, the gallery is home to works by dozens of artists for you to admire and even buy, if you're interested. The studio will be open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Sept. 28. They've got more glass than ever, and they're adding new stuff to the website all the time, so you can check it out before you go if you want. Philabaum Glass Gallery & Studio, 711 S. Sixth Ave.
Fun in General
Vail's Colossal Fourth at the Farmers Market. This Fourth of July, the Vail Preservation Society has decided to blow right past going big, in favor of growing colossal. The Heirloom Farmers Market is getting in on the fun a little early, with this day full of live bluegrass music by Cadillac Mountain, pony rides, a petting zoo and homemade crafts. At Taste of the Market, get an education experience that includes a taste test of some of the freshest organic foods around. More than 50 food and artisan vendors means there's something to eat, and something to appreciate, for everyone. 8 a.m. to noon. Saturday, June 29. Rincon Valley Farmers and Artisans Market, 12500 E. Old Spanish Trail.
Car Show at Tucson Asphalt. You already know and love the Original El Taco, known for their Green & Red Chili, and for their signature mix of both flavors. But now, El Taco is mixing things up even more by hosting a car show! They'll have drag cars, juniors dragsters, racing go karts, 10 ¼ midgets, street cars, circle track cars and motorcycles. And, of course, they'll have food. Looking at cool stuff and eating cool stuff at the same time: Isn't that what life is all about? 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, June 30. Tucson Asphalt Contractors, Inc., 2425 W. Curtis Road. Free.
Asteroid Day at Flandrau. Asteroid Day is celebrated all over the world to highlight the science and exploration of asteroids, those little rocky guys orbiting the sun with us. You might have heard of a little asteroid called Bennu, which a team of scientists—led by the UA's own Dante Lauretta—have sent a spacecraft called OSIRIS-REx out to go explore. OSIRIS-REx team member Dolores Hill will do a presentation at Flandrau all about the spacecraft's mission to bring a sample back to Earth. The planetarium will also feature hands-on activities and a special screening of the fulldome planetarium show ASTEROID: MISSION EXTREME. Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 30. Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium, 1601 E. University Blvd. $5 for exhibits, $5 for planetarium shows and free for Hill's presentation, but reserve your tickets online. ■