2ND FRIDAY NIGHT OUT MESA
Step aside First Fridays, there’s another art walk in town! Mesa’s 2nd Friday Night Out showcases live music, original artwork from dozens of artists and a plethora of local food vendors. Select downtown Mesa shops and galleries also offer extended hours. The monthly block party boasts a different theme every month. Past events have made Main Street come to life with classic cars, fashion shows and music festivals. The first Night Out of the year allows attendees to reminisce on the Renaissance with a “Medieval Mayhem” theme. Assemble your crew and celebrate the culture and community of Mesa and come dressed as a lord or lady for the chance to win some swag.
Downtown Mesa, 101 W. Main Street, Mesa, 2ndfridaynightout.com, Friday, January 20, 5:30 p.m., free.
ARIZONA BALLOON CLASSIC 2017
If you’re mindlessly scrolling through your Tumblr feed for long enough, you’ll most likely stumble upon a photo of vibrant hot air balloons in flight. Make all your followers jealous by snapping some pics of your own at the Arizona Balloon Classic. Take in the sights and sounds as thousands of Phoenicians flock to this three-day festival to ride in and revel at dozens of hot air balloons. Attendees can enjoy flights, races, food and music during the day, but the fun and photo opps don’t stop when the sun goes down. Each night, the desert will be illuminated by the Evening Balloon Glow, as a light in each balloon dims and brightens in time to music, as well as fireworks.
Fear Farm Sports Complex, 2209 N. 99th Avenue, Phoenix, abcfest.com, Friday, January 20, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, January 21, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, January 22, 7 a.m. to 10 a.m., $15 per day.
ORIGINS PROJECT LECTURE: MATERIALITY OF A VACUUM
Are you constantly baffled and intrigued by the way the universe works? Do you want to expand your mind without the use of mind-altering substances…for free? Frank Wilczek, a Distinguished Professor at ASU and Nobel Prize recipient, will kick off the night with a discussion on the Materiality of a Vacuum: Late Night Thoughts of a Physicist, followed by a conversation with cosmologist and theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss. The event is presented by The Origins Project at ASU, a transdisciplinary program that fosters research and partnerships at ASU and abroad and aims to accelerate teaching and public understanding of foundational questions facing society. The question “What is a Universe?” may be a bit daunting and hard to define, but Krauss and Wilczek aim to tackle the elusive concept in what is sure to be an enlightening evening. The most mind-blowing part? ASU students with a valid ID can receive two free tickets at the TCA box office.
Tempe Center for the Arts Theater, 700 W. Rio Salado Parkway, Tempe, origins.asu.edu/events/materiality-vacuum, Tuesday, January 31, 7 p.m., $7-$17, free for students.
BEYOND THE BRICKS-THURSDAY NIGHT LIVE
Don’t be just another brick in the wall! Every Thursday, live music and excitement bounces off the walls at Hayden Square Amphitheater. Grab a blanket and your besties and head down to Hayden Square to enjoy music, beer, wine and grub from Tempe eateries. This Thursday, award-winning cover band The Walkens will bring down the house with their take on everything from Top 40 to Motown.
Hayden Square Amphitheatre, 404 S. Mill Avenue, Tempe, downtowntempe.com/events/beyond-the-bricks, Thursdays, 5:30 p.m., free.
BIRDS N’ BEER
Some things just go together. Peanut butter and jelly. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson. Birds and beer. This popular, post-work series features lively presentations about birds and wildlife conservation in a low-key, laidback happy hour atmosphere. This unique event occurs the third Thursday of every month and serves local craft beer and wine to sip while you learn about the designated topic of discussion. January’s topic is the transformative power of a diverse and comprehensive conservation effort and will be led by Dr. Chandra Taylor Smith, the VP of Diversity and Inclusion at the National Audubon Society.
Rio Salado Audobon Center, 3131 S. Central Avenue, Phoenix, riosalado.audubon.org/programs/birds-n-beer, every third Thursday, 5:30 p.m., free.
CHANDLER FILM FESTIVAL
The Chandler International Film Festival’s goal is to acknowledge and appreciate fledgling filmmakers from across the world and showcase their talents at an annual event. Nearly 100 films, from horror to heartwarming, were chosen to be screened at this three-day movie marathon. The festival will feature a red carpet, opening ceremony, workshops, dinner, an awards ceremony and an after party.
SoHo63, 63 E. Boston Street, Chandler, chandlerfilmfestival.com, Friday, January 13, 5:30 p.m., Saturday, January 14, noon, Sunday, January 15, 12:15 p.m., $39-$125.
ESTRELLA MOUNTAIN HIKE
If you’ve always wanted to explore the desert at night, but have been too apprehensive, now is your chance to be surrounded by the mountains and a group of fellow nature lovers. Be sure to bring water, warm clothing and comfortable shoes for this stunning stroll through Estrella Mountain Regional Park, beginning at the Nature Center.
Estrella Mountain Regional Park, 14805 W. Vineyard Avenue, Goodyear, 623.932.3811, Friday, January 13, 7 p.m., free.
46TH ANNUAL BARRETT-JACKSON CLASSIC CAR AUCTION
Every winter, the Barrett-Jackson Auction Company conducts a classic car auction in Arizona. The event offers some of the most exclusive automobiles available. The massive eight-day experience invites serious collectors and curious spectators alike. The auction touts more than 1,000 collector cars and over 300 vendors and exhibits. Last year, $102 million was raised during the auctioning of nearly 1,400 vehicles. Last year’s event also welcomed A-list attendees like Jay Leno and Jeff Gordon.
WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 N. Pima Road, Scottsdale, barrett-jackson.com, Saturday, January 14 through Sunday, January 22, various times, $17-$175.
MIRANDA SINGS LIVE…YOU’RE WELCOME TOUR
Many may recognize her as the quirky, sloppy red lipstick and sweatpants-clad personality from YouTube, or from her stint on True Life: I’m Famous Online, which boosted her popularity. The offbeat, off-key “singer” has now penned her own book and created her own Netflix series and Vimeo special. If you’re a true “Mirfanda,” you’ll want to scoop up a ticket to bear witness to her antics on stage. VIP packages include exclusive swag, meet and greet and photo opportunities with the YouTube star.
Celebrity Theatre, 40 N. 32nd Street, Phoenix, celebritytheatre.ticketforce.com, Thursday, January 19, 8 p.m., $39.50-$75.
YABYUM AWARDS SHOW
YabYum, whose tagline is “Art as means to Enlightenment,” is a local music, arts and culture blog that backs the Arizona music scene, hard. Every year, they host a big party to celebrate the music and vibes coming out of the southwest. The all-ages event is hosted by local musician HotRock SupaJoint and will feature performances by celebrated local acts such as Phoenix Afrobeat Orchestra, Fairy Bones and Phantom Party.
The Trunk Space, 1124 N. 3rd Street, Phoenix, yabyumwest.com, Saturday, January 14, 6 p.m., free.