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Top Hops Home Brew Challenge

Local firefighters will test their home brewing skills at the Top Hops challenge starting at 6 p.m., Saturday, April 6, at Foothills Mall. The event, to be held in the parking lot in front of Thunder Canyon Brewery, will include live music, food trucks and, of course, plenty of beer. The winning fire crew will have the opportunity to mass-brew the winning beer at Thunder Canyon, where it will then be sold on tap. Microbrews from across Arizona and the West also will be featured at the challenge. Participating brewers include Thunder Canyon, Four Peaks, Santa Fe, Dragoon, Barrio, Borderlands, 1055, Sentinel Peak, Grand Canyon and Big Sky. Proceeds benefit Northwest Firefighters Charities and charities sponsored by other participating fire departments. Tickets are $30 the day of and $20 in advance. For more details and where to get tickets, go to www.tophopschallenge.com.


Booze Happenings

First up is the Tequila Dinner at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 26, at Loews' Flying V Bar & Grill. Costs $65 per person.

Then, Friday, April 5, Loews is having a Beer Garden Dinner, with executive chef Ken Harvey and Dragoon Brewing Co. brewmaster Eric Greene participating in cooking demonstrations while diners enjoy a four-course barbecue paired with Dragoon's brews. The dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. and the cost is $50 per person. Loews is at 7000 N. Resort Drive. Call 299-2020 for reservations for both dinners.

On Friday, March 29, Maynards Kitchen, 400 N. Toole Ave., is hosting a five-course wine dinner with special guest Haily Trefethen of Trefethen Family Vineyards. Dinner is at 7 p.m., and chef Addam Buzzalini has prepared a menu to accompany the winery's newest releases. For reservations, call 545-0577.


New Farmers' Market

A farmers' market is now at the Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. On Saturdays, the market takes over the new outdoors patio area east of the main building. Hours are 8 to 11 a.m. Organic produce and other foods from local farmers and gardeners are featured, plus baked goods and cold salads from the Food Conspiracy Co-op. Also, free organic popcorn for all attendees. For more info, go to loftcinema.com.


Jalopy's Grillville Closed

The automobile-themed Jalopy's Grillville, 4230 N. Oracle Road, has closed suddenly after a little more than a year in business. On a local auto racing themed radio show that Jalopy's sponsored, the owner said that a lack of floor space and the restaurant's off-street location contributed to the decision to close.

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