Best Things to Do in Phoenix This Weekend


It’s gonna be a weekend vacation banger, folks. You have a ridiculous number of options when it comes to things to do in Phoenix, including several theatrical productions, ASU football, a toy show, and of course, Halloween-themed activities.

And don’t forget, we also have extensive lists of Halloween parties and the best household and business haunted houses in town.

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Kwane Vedrene as Kenyatta in the BTT production of Baby sunset.

Black Theater Troupe

Baby sunset

Dominique Morisseau realized in college that there weren’t enough theatrical roles for women of color, so she started writing her own plays. Now his work titled Baby sunset, which had its off-Broadway premiere in 2013, is performed by the Black Theater Troupe. The play imagines a revolutionary and political former prisoner reuniting his daughter, hoping to secure a treasure trove of love letters written by his wife while he was in prison. Based in Detroit, Morisseau’s own parents have roots in Haiti and Mississippi. In 2018, she was named MacArthur Fellow, joining the shortlist of “Engineering Grant” recipients. Morisseau wrote the book of the musical Ain’t Too Proud: Life and Times of Temptations, which opened on Broadway in 2019, and became the first black woman to receive a Tony Award nomination for Best Book in a Musical. Show dates include Friday, October 29, when it premieres at 7:30 p.m. at the Helen K. Mason Performing Arts Center, 1333 East Washington Street. Tickets cost $ 44. Baby sunset continues until November 7. Lynn trimble

Click to enlarge Head to the Tempe Center for the Arts to see Our Dear Dead Drug Lord.  - LYNN TRIMBLE

Head to the Tempe Center for the Arts to see Our dear dead drug lord.

Lynn trimble

Gang life

The so-called ‘cocaine hippos’ have been making headlines lately, as animal rights activists have sought to protect the animals that proliferate in Colombia, decades after drug lord Pablo Escobar , now deceased, illegally imported hippos into the country. Coincidentally, Escobar is also at the center of a play performed by Stray Cat Theater, which imagines a gang of girls seeking to evoke the spirit of the drug dealer from a treehouse in Florida. Written by Boston-based designer Alexis Scheer, Our dear dead drug lord has been described as both “terrifying” and “hilarious”. It is executed at Tempe Arts Center, 700 West Rio Salado Parkway, Tempe. Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. show on Friday, October 29 are $ 20. Take note: Stray Cat Theater has a content notice for this show, noting that it contains “adult language, adult content, and simulated acts of extreme violence.” Not to mention all that teenage angst, and a twist you won’t see coming. Our dear dead drug lord continues until November 13. Lynn trimble

Click to enlarge Worth Takeaway in Mesa pays homage to Bob's Burgers again this weekend.  - WORTH TAKING OUT

Worth Takeaway in Mesa honors Bob’s burgers again this weekend.

To take away

Jim Bob’s burgers

One of the biggest features of the Halloween season (next to all the candy) is the ability to take on someone – or something – else’s identity. And you don’t necessarily have to be a person to do it, because the people of To take away, 18 West Main Street in Mesa, demonstrate when they turn the restaurant into a pop-up tribute to Bob’s burgers every October. It’s called Jim Bob’s Burgers (named after Worth’s co-owner Jim Bob Strothers) and involves the staff dressing up as characters from the show and serving themed dishes. This will be the case on Friday October 29 and Saturday October 30, during the fourth edition of the pop-up. Burgers with funny names will be served, including a few taken straight from the show like “Paranormal Pepper-Jacktivity” and “Texas Chainsaw Massa-Curd”. Feel free to dress up and bring erotic fiction to your friend. Hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (or while stocks last). Benjamin leatherman

Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experiment

Want to enter the Wizarding World of Harry Potter? Congratulations muggle, it only took more than two decades to finally participate in the fandom. In order to catch up with you as quickly as possible, we recommend that you attend Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experiment, which takes over the Madison Center for the Arts, 5601 North 16th Street, from Thursday, October 28 through Saturday, October 30. The show condenses all seven books in the Harry Potter series into a 72-minute game starring actors Scott Hoatsen and Joseph Maudsley, which provides a fun recap of each plot. Performances take place at 7 p.m. every evening. Tickets are $ 29 to $ 59. Benjamin leatherman

Epic Halloween Party from the Toy Show

There are officially less than two months of shopping left before Christmas. Anyone looking for a leap forward can attend this Halloween version of the Epic Toy Show on Saturday, October 30 at the El Zaribah Shrine Auditorium, 552 North 40th Street. Dozens of vendors will participate, selling a wide variety of classic and modern toys, games and collectibles. The quality and quantity of the items will vary, of course, although there are likely some rare gems to be found. Since it’s Halloween week, vendors will be handing out candy to tricksters or healers and organizers will have a children’s costume contest at 3 p.m. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Early admission is $ 8 until 10 a.m., the general public can enter from 10 a.m. for $ 3, and children in fancy dress are free from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Benjamin leatherman

Click to enlarge "Spider-Dog / Spider-Dog / Does whatever a Spider-Dog does." - BENJAMIN LEATHERMAN

“Spider-Dog / Spider-Dog / Does whatever a Spider-Dog does.”

Benjamin leatherman

Dog costume

For animal lovers on Instagram or TikTok, every day is dog dress up day. You don’t have to wait until Halloween to bring out their dog’s collection of chic vests, hats or slippers. Even so, it’s a great time of year to level up by dressing your canine companion in a fabulous Halloween costume and then heading to the dog costume party in Dog hair, 3133 South Lindsay Road, # 107, Gilbert. This is where dog lovers Randy and Marleen Duren created their neighborhood bar where you can buy beer, cider, mead, snacks, coffee or tea. The party starts at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 30. This means that you still have some time to decide whether your furry baby should be dressed as a zombie, a jalapeño, or the terrifying calico cat. Lynn trimble

Ghoul Gallery

More than 20 local artists will take part in this pop-up one-night gallery inside the old Deer-O building at 2431 East Van Buren Street on Saturday, October 30. The works on display will be weird, scary or bizarre variety and the lineup will include names like Derk Harkin, Brad Dwyer, Luster Kaboom, TC Fenwick, Angela Nimmo, Stephanie Wilkins, Mckenna Harron and Cassie Stys. The short movie Through the eyes of a ghost will also be previewed during the event. The hours are from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Free entry. Benjamin leatherman

Click to enlarge It's time for the Monster Ball at Alwun House.  - TOM CARLSON

It’s time for the Monster Ball at Alwun House.

Tom carlson

Monster ball

Now that you’re too old to roam the neighborhood with a pillowcase and a Disney villain mask, you might want to try something a little sexier for Halloween. Alwun House, 1204 East Roosevelt Street, hosts its Monsters Ball on Saturday, October 30, when the fun starts at 7 pm and continues until 11:30 pm DJ Rebot, and a kinky burlesque performance called the Ghoulesque Show. While you’re at it, check out the Monsters Menagerie exhibit filled with uncensored artwork meant to be provocative and profane. You can reserve a table for four for $ 250, which will put you close to the stage and settle you down with a bottle of champagne. Or you can reserve a cocktail table for two for $ 120, or get a general admission ticket for $ 20. Alwun House will have a cash bar, in case you want to add spirits to the mix. It’s a 21+ age affair, so the little monsters have to find another place to play that night. Lynn trimble

Beyond the Grave at Pioneer & Military Memorial Park

Marshall Shore (aka “Hip Historian” from Arizona) will host this event at Pioneer and Military Memorial Park, 1317 West Jefferson Street, 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, October 30, which will explore the lives of those buried there. Participants can take their own self-guided tour or hear tales from storytellers standing near the graves of several historical figures. Items like flowers or pictures can also be left on several memorial altars that will be available. Tickets are $ 50 per person. Benjamin leatherman

Click to enlarge Arizona State University is trying to win the Pac-12 this season.  - WILL EDMONDS / SUN DEVIL ATHLETICS

Arizona State University is trying to win the Pac-12 this season.

Will Edmonds / Sun Devil Athletics

ASU Football vs. Washington State

With just over a month left in the college football regular season, the Arizona State University football team is in great shape. The Sun Devils are tied for the Pac-12 South’s best record at 3-1 with a definite chance of winning the conference and a probable bowl appearance in the future. They have five games to play, all of which will be against conference teams, starting with a home game against Washington State on Saturday, October 30 at Sun Devil Stadium, 500 East Veterans Way in Tempe. Cougars are the outsiders due to a variety of offensive issues, which means ASU has a good chance of adding another win in the home stretch of the season. Kick-off is at noon and tickets from $ 19. Benjamin leatherman

Click to enlarge The legendary San Carlos Hotel in downtown Phoenix.  - BENJAMIN LEATHERMAN

The legendary San Carlos Hotel in downtown Phoenix.

Benjamin leatherman

Phoenix Ghost Tours in Downtown Phoenix

Want to have a good scare while listening to ghost stories about some of downtown Phoenix’s most historic landmarks? This popular tour will begin at the San Carlos Hotel, 202 North Central Avenue, and take participants on a 60- to 90-minute trip with stops at eight different locations. Tours take place nightly at 8 p.m. until Halloween. (Additional visits will also take place at 10 p.m. on October 30 and 31.) Adult tickets are $ 24.99 per person before taxes and fees. All details can be found here. Benjamin leatherman

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