Third Sunday Historical Tours at Valley of the Moon. Take this chance to go behind the scenes and learn more about your local fairy wonderland, billed as "the world's only historic fantasy fairyland garden sanctuary." You might already know it was built in the 1920s by George Legler, or that it is dedicated to the idea that kindness is the key to all happiness. But here's your chance to get some more of the details. 8 to 10 a.m. Sunday, July 21. Valley of the Moon Tucson, 2544 E. Allen Road. $5, or free for teachers, members and kids under 12.
Summer Science Saturday at LPL. July 20 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the day Apollo 11, and astronaut Neil Armstrong took one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind. The Lunar and Planetary Laboratory is celebrating this milestone of human achievement—and the UA's involvement in it—with this day full of activities and exhibits, including films about lunar missions, Apollo artifacts, lunar meteorites and 3D lunar models. There are also tours of the Transmission Electron Microscope and Electron Micropobe labs, plus three lectures by local space scientists. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 20. Lunar & Planetary Laboratory, 1629 E. University Blvd. Free.
Stranger Things '80s Dance Party. This event had us at "Stranger Things," and then it had us again at "'80s Dance Party." Get ready to get nostalgic for the prime years of GameBoys and legwarmers, and to hit the dance floors to the tunes of DJ Jeffrey. He'll be playing all-things '80s, including a mix of songs from the show. There will also be a Stranger Things photobooth, tons of visuals and character buttons for the first 300 guests. The strangest thing of all would be you deciding not to come to this party. 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Friday, July 19. The Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress St. $10 to $15.
Especially for Kids
Make it Mondays! Sure, summer in Tucson is hot, but one of the best things about it is that you not only don't have to deal with the Monday blues, but you actually get to look forward to Mondays, thanks to the local children's museum, which offers admission for just three bucks on Mondays during the summer, and a special guest from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. This week's special guest? The MOCA Mobile Museum! You're never too young to start learning that art comes in all sorts of forms, and that the opportunities to express ideas creativity are basically limitless. Museum is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, July 22. Children's Museum Tucson, 200 S. Sixth Ave. $3.
Flashback Friday Nights at Old Tucson. No season belongs so unequivocally to a specific group of people the way that summer belongs to kids. Maybe springtime is for lovers, sure, and maybe fall belongs to people who love pumpkin-flavored treats. But the heat of the evenings, the midday popsicles, the sleeping in, the disorienting daytime trips to the movie theater where you emerge from the darkness of the theater and realize it's still light out? These are pleasures kids appreciate in a special way. Add to that these Friday evenings at Old Tucson, with signature entertainment, food specials and FREE admission for kids 11 and under. Happy summer to all kids and kids at heart! 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, July 19. Old Tucson, 201 S. Kinney Road. Adult admission is $19.95.
Maynards to the Moon. 50 years ago, Neil Armstrong walked on the moon for the first time. But he didn't walk TO the moon. To celebrate the anniversary of this momentous occasion, and to foster a healthy community, more than 600 Tucsonans have been meeting every week for the last year with the goal of walking a combined 238,000 miles as part of Meet Me at Maynards—the distance between here and the moon. At more than 265,000 combined miles, they've exceeded their goal. Come celebrate with them (or maybe celebrate yourself, if you're one of the Meeters at Maynards.) Walk starts at 5:15 p.m., and celebration starts at 7 p.m. Monday, July 22. Maynards Market, 400 E. Toole.
Peach Mania! Apple Annie's annual celebration of all things peachy is back, and we hope you've been training for it, because there are not very many times in your life where you'll be offered an all-you-can-eat peaches & pancakes breakfast, and it would be a shame for you to not take full advantage. And that's just in the mornings. Then, hop on a wagon ride and go pick some more peaches to take home, enjoy free samples of peaches and pear products, then unwind from the stress of the day with a slice of peach pie or a bowl of peach ice cream. Peachy keen, no? Saturday and Sunday, July 20, 21, 27 & 28. Aug 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 & 18. 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Apple Annie's Fruit Orchards Location, 2081 W. Hardy Road. Willcox.
Cool Summer Nights at the Desert Museum: Explore Outdoors. This week's nighttime event at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is jam-packed with activities. Ralph Wetmore will do a presentation on lightning photography. Amanda Stradermann, a geologist at the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory at the UA, will be doing a presentation in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing called "What it's Like to Send a NASA Mission to the Moon, and Where to Go If You Did." Local conservation community partners will be teaching fun ways to explore the outdoors. And as always, museum docents can teach you about desert phenomena, you can visit the stingray touch exhibit and kids can check out the Packrat Playhouse. 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, July 20. 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.
Summer Safari Nights. It's game night at the Reid Park Zoo! But we're not talkin' board games. This night is all about the games animals play to learn important skills, like how to hunt and how to attract a mate. There will also be some games for humans available, though, including cornhole, giant Jenga and a trivia contest. Tonight's featured animals include otters, goats, squirrel monkeys, lions and the Andean bear. Diluvio is providing the live music, and, as always, there are plenty of food and drink specials, animal encounters and keeper chats. Go Fish! 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 20. Reid Park Zoo, 3400 Zoo Court. $10.50 adults, $8.50 seniors, $6.50 kids ages 2 to 14 and free for zoo members.
Bats in Flight. It's freakin' bats! Have you ever been around to witness the hundreds of bats from under the Campbell Avenue Bridge over the Rillito River take flight in the evening? It's a sight to behold in and of itself, and will have you asking questions like, "How did so many bats fit under there?" "Where are those bats going?" and "Seriously, they're still coming out from under the bridge? How many bats live under this bridge?!" Spectacle aside, Pima County naturalists and volunteers will be on hand this Friday evening leading family-friendly activities and providing information about Mexican free-tailed bats. 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, July 19. Pima County Rillito River Park, 4200 N. Campbell Ave. Free.
Learn Something New
Juggling Jam. Local circus school Cirque Roots is always coming through with opportunities for you to enhance weird and wonderful skills. Juggling Jam isn't a class so much as an opportunity to come together with friends and practice the juggling and juggling-adjacent skills you're working on. Which means it truly is all-levels—you can't fall behind in the class if there's no class being led. So whether you really want to finally make the move toward juggling six chainsaws instead of five, or whether you read an article about how to juggle two tennis balls and want to see if you can do it yourself, come on by. 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, July 24. Cirque Roots, 901 N. 13th Ave. $5.
NOW Series–Presidio San Agustin del Tucson. Night Out With, or NOW, is an event series giving you the opportunity to hear cultural stories from local leaders. And this particular event is about the building of Tucson back in the 18th century, starting with the building of the Presidio San Agustin, a fortress built by Spanish soldiers. It overlooked the Santa Cruz, and was actually the founding structure of what would go on to become Tucson. Come learn, and enjoy some history-inspired food and drink while you're at it! 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 19. Barrio + CO, 600 S. Meyer Ave. $25.
Maps & Compass Navigation–Beyond the Basics. If you've been using Google Maps to get everywhere for so long that you don't remember—or you never learned—how to properly and deeply read a map, come forward now. It's OK. This is a judgment-free zone. And also, it's a zone where you can go beyond the basics of maps and compass navigation to learn about declination, triangulation and how to remember to use these skills when you're lost and panicking in the middle of the wilderness. REI will be providing maps and compasses for this hands-on class with some lecture components, but you can bring your own if you prefer. 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 23. REI, 160 W. Wetmore Road. $55, or $35 for members.
Fun in General
Susan Rumsey: Artwork on Display. Tucson feels like it's overflowing with art sometimes: It's everywhere you look. For example, have you been to the Oro Valley Public Library lately? They're featuring the travel photography of Sue Rumsey, who found her way into the art world by volunteering at a juried arts festival 35 years ago. In the early '90s, she fell in love with photography on a trip to Italy, and became well-versed in getting down on the ground when necessary to get exactly the shot she wanted. Her show, Details and Perspectives, showing at the library, is made up of these shots. On display this summer at the Oro Valley Public Library, 1305 W. Naranja Drive. Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday.
Tucson Saguaros vs. Alpine Cowboys. Did you know that the exact origin of baseball is pretty difficult to track? People have been whacking balls around with sticks for hundreds of years—though the earliest known reference to baseball was in a British publication in 1744. But let's look to the future of baseball. The immediate future. It's the Tucson Saguaros, who are facing off against the Alpine Cowboys this week. At Dragway Night, Tucson Dragway will be at the game with giveaways, contests and plenty of other fun. 6 p.m. Friday, July 19. Cherry Field, 1800 E. 13th Ave. $7.50.
July Beginners & Veterans Stand Up Comedy Showcase. New faces, old faces, big faces, small faces and some faces the size of your head are all coming together to bring you this night full of laughs. Comedians like Sean Botai, Yves Tobon, Rory Monserat, Amber Frame and Andrew Horneman are all taking the stage at this show hosted by Chinna Garza. There will be snacks! There will be canned wine! And there will, if nothing else, be an opportunity to figure out what you are and aren't looking for in standup comedy, and to get out into the community to support local performers. A win if we ever heard of one.10:30 p.m. Friday, July 19. Tucson Improv Movement, 414 E. Ninth St. $5.
Pop-Up Cat Café. Tucson is a cool place and all, but one of the great tragedies of the Old Pueblo is that it doesn't have a cat café, which is just as wonderful as it sounds: a place where you get to go drink coffee and cuddle with a bunch of cats. But for four magical hours this weekend, Tucson WILL have a cat café. And the cats (from Pawsitively Cats No-Kill Shelter), will all be up for adoption! Which means you could, theoretically, take the cats home and drink coffee there, making for you own, very exclusive and private cat café. Grumpy's Coffee Shack provides the coffee, and baked goods will also be on hand. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, July 20. Pawsitively Cats No-Kill Shelter, 1145 N. Woodland Ave. Free, but donations appreciated. Space is limited! ■