Cheap Thrills 

TOE JAM: Dance yer little digits off when Orts Space fires up Bohemian Boogies at the Barefoot Ballroom. These regular Friday night romps promise to "awaken your sacred fire of movement," and let you "dance with all the motion and emotion of many musical styles."

Sound like a kick? It's sure to take off at lightning speed, and this is your chance to get in on the ground floor.

The dance party runs from 8 to 11 p.m. every Friday in the Orts Space, 121 E. Seventh St. Admission is $3, and kids are welcome. For details, call 323-2438.

NO PALE ALE: Douse your buds with some heady brew, and catch some frothing good music when Blue Steel lets 'er rip at the Dark Mountain Brewery and Winery.

The band is known for its penetrating blend of folk, country, bluegrass, rock and Celtic tunes, and their host venue Dark Mountain is a refuge of great micro-suds. Oh, and a mighty fine wine, too.

Blue Steel plays from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, July 24, at the Dark Mountain Brewery and Winery, 13605 E. Benson Highway. Cover is a measly $3. Call 762-5777 for details.

GRUB BUSTERS: If you're like us, you're probably getting weary of toting a slew of silly little "member" cards every time you need toothpaste, Johnny Cat or a tub of Country Crock.

As if those grocery titans really need to know just a bit more about our personal buying habits. However, a few folks are countering the member-card crapola by getting a new piece o' plastic every time they hit the check-out, always in different and increasingly colorful names. Why, just the other day, Atilla Hunster was spotted buying three boxes of Noodle-Roni and a can of Spam in a midtown Safeway.

Way to go, Atilla!

Others make new friends and bend shopper profiles by simply swapping their cards back and forth. Just imagine the Madison Avenue headaches over a niche market that includes a 90-year-old granny who buys $50 worth of spermicide a month.

If all that sounds a little too tedious, there's another delightful option: a visit to the Tucson Farmer's Markets.

Instead of magnetic-strip searches and useless receipt-back coupons, what you'll find at these weekly gatherings is the freshest, plumpest and probably tastiest organic produce this side of Iowa, harvested from spots like the Guacamole Farm in Benson, Tucson's La Oesta Garden Market and Willcox's Eurofresh Tomato patches.

That's in addition to specialties like Beal Street Barbecue Sauce, El Rapido Tamales and Empanadas, and Giant Arizona Pistachios, along with natural beef from the Cimarron Ranch in Willcox, and Gila Bend's Desert Sweet Shrimp.

Tucson Farmers' Markets run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday in Park Mall, and 7 a.m. to noon Sunday in St. Philip's Plaza, at Campbell and River Road. For information, call 743-8063.


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