Weekend Fun on Grand Ave and Beyond

October 21st, 2011

(Jill Bernstein and Courtney McCune contributed to this article.)

Here is the rundown of activity that will get your feet strolling Downtown Phoenix streets this weekend.

Third Annual Grand Avenue Festival

The creative spirit will be alive and kickin’ on Saturday, October 22 from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., when art galleries, local businesses, vendors, and musicians will be out en masse to celebrate neighborhood sustainability on Grand Avenue.

Featured events of the day include the ReDapt Commercial Building Tour, which will visit some of the neighborhood’s adaptive reuse projects and historic buildings; tours of Oasis on Grand, an old motel that has been remodeled and reborn as colorful live/work/retail spaces for artists; and the Grand Mural Love Map, which will be available for self-guided tours of the Grand Avenue murals.

Other highlights include the Recycled Rubbish and the Local Boutiques Fashion Shows and the always popular Hanging Gardens & Woven Fences & Trashy Sculpture show.  In addition, local Latino and Indigenous arts organization, CALACA, will celebrate the upcoming Day of the Dead with their “Dia de los Muertos Exchange Project” exhibit at Bragg’s Pie Factory.  Mobile food vendors, including Chichi’s Tacos will be on hand to keep you fortified for the day.

Bike riding to the festival is encouraged! Street parking is free along Grand Avenue between Van Buren and Roosevelt. Additional free parking is available in the lot just south of Bragg’s Pie Factory, at Grand and McKinley, and in the lot next to Oasis on Grand at 15th Avenue and Grand. Find out more about all of the Grand Avenue Arts Festival events.

First Annual Evans Churchill Interesting Interiors Tour

Earlier in the day, witness downtowners in their natural habitat and take a peek behind the doors of some of the coolest pads in the Evans Churchill neighborhood, from urban loft apartments to cozy historic bungalows.  Tours will be offered from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m

Go “green” and tour the neighborhood on Ollie the Trolley, pedicab, bicycle, or foot. Mile High Challenge will create a special walking tour map for the event. Tickets are available online or the day of the tour at MADE Art Boutique, 922 N. 5th St., and the Phoenix Public Market, 14 E. Pierce St. Admission is $10 adults, $8 for seniors and students (with valid ID), and free for children six years and younger. Receive $1 off the ticket price by bringing a canned food item to the event to benefit St. Mary’s Food Bank. Proceeds from the tour will benefit public improvements in the Evans Churchill neighborhood.

Arizona Humanities Festival

Downtown’s Civic Space Park (easy to access by light rail!) will be home to a day-long celebration of the diverse cultures that surround us and will include presentations of Chinese Lion Dancing, Ballet Folklorico, the history of Hip Hop, Corridos in Arizona, Taiko Drumming, FourWheelWarPony (a film about an Apache skateboard team), and much more. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is free to the public.  Get the full program and download a parking map.

First Annual Phoenix Food Truck Festival

Move on from drool-worthy homes and culture to drool-worthy food at the Phoenix Food Truck Festival, taking place at the A.R.T.S. market space on Roosevelt Row. Celebrate the mobile cuisine revolution by sampling the goods from over 30 different food trucks.  Hosted by Roosevelt Row Community Development Corporation (CDC) and the Phoenix Street Food Coalition, this event will bring together the valley’s finest fare on wheels along with a beer and wine garden and live music.  The festival runs from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., tickets are $30. Event info at phxstreetfood.org.

Fifth Annual Downtown Phoenix Pub Crawl

Finish the night with “One Crawl to Rule Them All” visiting some of Downtown Phoenix’s most beloved bars, saloons, pubs, lounges, clubs and restaurants from 9 pm to 3 am. Spend the night collecting beads from various Crawl stops and cap your evening with a post-Crawl breakfast and dance party at Steve’s Greenhouse Grill ($6.95 + gratuity). Giveaways for all who make it to the finish line! The Crawl starts at 9 p.m. with Trolley buses available until 2 a.m. to move participants from pub to pub. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 the day of the Crawl.

Heard Museum Annual Benefit Gala – Moondance

Performances by Kris Kristofferson and Merle Haggard will cap an evening of cowboy boots and bolo ties as the Heard honors longtime museum trustee and scholar Carol Ann Mackay and her husband Harvey Mackay, author, Arizona Republic columnist and renowned businessman. Food for the event will be presented by Arizona Taste Fine Catering in collaboration with renowned Barrio Café chef Silvana Saloido Esparza. Slap on your spurs and join the fun to help  provide critical funding to meet the Heard Museum’s educational mission.