DPJ is proud to bring you the best Yelp reviews of your favorite Downtown restaurants, boutiques, venues and everything in between. Every Tuesday, visit DPJ for a finely crafted, tell-all account of a Downtown spot straight from the experts: the people!
I was a little confused at what this place actually was at first when I walked in. I went there to see my friend’s friends band play last night. I got that part. But was it part art gallery, part coffee shop, part music venue, part let’s confuse me a little more? It was a little strange to see a band perform there and no alcohol was served. Thank G-d for the Bikini Lounge next door.
Whatever this place was, it was pretty cool! The people that seemed to frequent the place seemed very nice and the chick that was working was super cool. I actually could say that the acoustics in that place rocked… both bands that played sounded crystal clear and didn’t blow my eardrums out.
Only real minus was the parking. But who cares… it was one of the coolest places that I went to in Phoenix.
The Trunk Space is located at 1506 W. Grand Ave. (602) 256.6006
The DPJ Yelper of the Week offers honest insight on a Downtown business to help you explore your core. DPJ hopes that by partnering with Yelp to spread the good word about well-loved Downtown spots, you’ll spread your patronage and support local business.
Yelp is a social networking and local search engine that provides the reviews of places and things that matter to you. Simply log in, pick a place and queue up your inner critic. You can write a beaming review of your favorite gelato spot, or a scathing portrayal of that rental car facility you had to use after that curb came out of nowhere. Yelp’s reviews are at once honest, uncensored, wildly hilarious and true. Heck, the site must be doing something right — it had 25 million viewers just last month!
I’m back. And married. Sorry for the lapse in genius. But, let’s be honest, that started a long time ago. I keep writing anyway. Which is the point of today’s post — writing.
November means a few things; namely that I get to sleep in an extra hour on Sundays before football starts (I’m abolishing daylight savings time when I become President). November also means that there are less than 60 days to nail down a New Year’s Resolution. I haven’t decided exactly what it is that I’ll be committing to for 12 months (read: 30 days), but I know that there are a couple things high on the list.
First, my wife Kim and I are contemplating participating in a 100 Mile Diet. With the Phoenix Public Market’s Urban Grocery and Wine Bar now a fully stocked five-day-a-week store, finding local produce and meat is easier than finding excuses not to contribute to a stronger Phoenix and more sustainable earth. If going local is high on your list of things to do in 2010, check out the Local First Arizona Fall Festival on Saturday, November 7.
Second on the list, and one that I could use some help with, is writing. Last week, I went to go see the movie New York, I Love You. It was a collection of short films with love stories and New York at the center of each plot — sort of an homage to Paris, Je T’aime. And, it got me thinking of movies, TV shows, novels and stage plays that treat their locale as a character itself. There’s CSI: New York and CSI: Miami. NCIS puts Los Angeles on display while NBC’s Trauma highlights San Francisco in a way that hasn’t been done since Mary-Kate and Ashley were in diapers. In a similar fashion, Jonathon Larson’s Rent brought New York’s East Village to life the same way Carrie Bradshaw talks about being in a relationship with Manhattan when she’s without a man (but, I don’t watch Sex in the City… promise).
And, don’t get me started on literature. Any good novel relies heavily on its location for fodder (and, for that matter, bad ones do, too — see: any Dan Brown book). Point is, a good place makes for a good story; and intuitively, I’m trusting that the reverse is true. Jack Kerouac and Alan Ginsberg not only wrote drug-induced sentence fragments about self-realization, but each also wrote about the city he lived in — the city he loved.
We have an outstanding portfolio of visual and performing artists in the Phoenix area, but I think it’s time for a writing renaissance in the Valley. Or maybe it’s already happening. One thing for sure: I can promise no genius from my end, but my hope is that if we convince enough people to write about the city they live in (the city they love?), we can add one more piece to this evolving puzzle that is bringing Phoenix to the 21st century.
What do you say? You in?
It’s Fifth Friday, and Halloween Eve, and the Urban Grocery and Wine Bar has been running for a few days now. You know you want to celebrate tonight, but where to go? Well, Night Rail, brought to you by RailLife, is helping kick off the opening week festivities at the Urban Grocery with a bang. Hop off the rail for your first (or second, or third) visit to the new building (14 E. Pierce St., Central Avenue and Roosevelt station) at 6 p.m. for $3 local beers and $5 local wines paired with some locally sourced yummy appetizers, check out all the goodies on the shelves and meet some of your neighbors.
Then, after 7, what to do? Good thing there’s lots going on nearby. The Suns’ home opener is tonight against Golden State, the Great Phoenix Scavenger Hunt runs from 7-9 and there are zombies invading Downtown Phoenix (yes, again!).
At 10 p.m., let’s all meet up at the Turf (705 N. 1st St., light rail station at Central and Roosevelt) and eat, drink and be scary!
Can you name 60 or so local businesses that you love? Some can, some flat out can’t and some think they can, but then rattle off 20 or so and get stuck. That’s why it’s important to attend events like Local First Arizona’s Certified Local Fall Festival.
Now in its fifth year, Fall Festival, which takes place Saturday, November 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., is packing nearly 5,000 people, 60 local businesses, tons of great food and drink and some of the Valley’s best in local music (all for free!) together in the Duck and Decanter parking lot on the southeast corner of 16th Street and Camelback Road.
Most importantly, this event helps benefit Local First and helps attendees discover exciting local businesses. A raffle and silent auction to benefit Local First will take place, and as an added bonus, the first 500 attendees receive gift bags!
There are far too many participating businesses to list, but plenty of favorites will be there — Uptown’s Postino and Frances, Coronado’s That’s a Wrap, Melrose’s Noble Beast and Copper Star Coffee and Midtown’s Fez, plus many more.
There’s also a full slate of great local live musicians. Here’s the schedule:
- 10:15-10:45 a.m. — Vanessa Atalanta (Phoenix)
- 11-11:45 a.m. — Nowhere Man and a Whiskey Girl (Bisbee)
- Noon-12:45 p.m. — Flyaway Tigers (Phoenix)
- 1-1:45 p.m. — Fatigo (Phoenix)
- 2-2:45 p.m. — Turn Back, O Man (Phoenix)
- 3-4 p.m. — Loose Cannons Blues Band (Phoenix)
Still not enough? There will be a dance performance by Zahr Jamil Middle Eastern Dance Company, an appearance from Diamondbacks mascot Baxter, unique shopping, arts and crafts and a bouncing castle (for the kids) and a climbing wall (for the bigger kids) to let out some steam.
Central Phoenix is slowly becoming a green living hot spot as more eco-friendly commercial and residential infill projects pop up from the dust of our dirt lots — so much so that the USGBC Greenbuild conference is coming to Downtown Phoenix.
Local green building pioneers [merz]project built the Link building (adjacent to Cancer Survivors Park near the Burton Barr Library) as the company’s headquarters, but it’s quickly become one of Downtown’s iconic urban renewal structures since opening its doors in the summer of 2008. Itself at 1950s office structure revamp, the Link is a true landmark in conservation, producing very little construction waste in its rebuild process. Now architects, builders and designers from around the world will get to check it out.
The Link is the official site for the “Environmental Ideas in Green Building” showcase, taking place during the Greenbuild conference November 10-14. The exhibit is open to all and features work and materials from green building projects around the U.S. The goal is to bring these conservation concepts and products to the public in a unique way. Local companies JAG Development, Solar City, UEB Builders, LG Surfaces and GeOasis are among those that will be featured. Attendees will also get to see Matt Pool’s soon-to-be-open coffeehouse, Giant Coffee, on the lower level of the structure.
The After Hours Gallery, located just blocks away and also designed by [merz]project, will also be open for tours throughout the week.
The Link is located at 1437 N. 1st St. After Hours Gallery is located at 116 W. McDowell Rd. (Light rail station at Central/McDowell for both.) Exhibit hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m.