guide to keeping busy (and staying cool!) in the Old Pueblo.
Food & Booze
Chorizo and Sonoran Hot Dog Challenge
. Tucson is well known as the Sonoran Hot Dog capital of the U.S. Less well known is how great the chorizo in town is. Ask any Phoenician with family in the Old Pueblo: Tucson has it going on when it comes to good chori. Now in its second year, KLPXs' Chorizo and Sonoran Hot Dog Challenge aims to settle any dispute about who's the best when it comes to two Tucson staples. Desert Diamond Casino hosts, while the winner in each category will walk away with a cool $1,000. 2-5 p.m. Saturday, June 24. Desert Diamond Casino, 1100 W. Pima Mine Road, Sahuarita, AZ 85629.
Summer Wine Tasting.
Summer in Tucson is looking a little extra hot this year, so you might as well drink a little more than usual. Vintage Wine Estates is bringing Middle Sister Moscato, Cosentino The Blanc, and Clayhouse Adobe Red Blend. Stop by and sample each offering. Bottes will be available for purchase, so the fun can continue when you get home. 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, June 27. Tucson Hop Shop, 3230 N. Dodge Blvd. Free.
Moana at the Cactus Drive-In
. Indulge in the iconic drive-in experience at the Tanque Verde Swap Meet this Thursday, June 22. The Cactus Drive-In Theatre Foundation presents Disney's latest film about an adventurous young woman (Auli'i Cravalho) on a journey to save her people. 8 p.m. Thursday, June 22.
Cinema La Placita Summer Series
. Learn to stop worrying and love Cinema La Placita’s screening of Dr. Strangelove, director Stanley Kubrick’s suspenseful parody examining the comedy of errors that occur when an insane general triggers a path to a nuclear holocaust. In addition to the showing, audiences are invited to enjoy the cash bar and food truck on site. 8 p.m. Thursday, June 22. Tucson Museum of Art outdoor plaza. $3.
Summer Classic Films at the Temple
. You can catch James Dean in his final role before his untimely death with a screening of Giant, an epic tale of dysfunctional family dynamics set amid Texas oil rigs that also stars Rock Hudson and Elizabeth Taylor. 7 p.m. Friday, June 23, at the Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. $10.
. Movies are fun, sure, but they’re also culturally significant. Take part in the Loft Cinema’s Social Justice Summer, a free weekly series with talks lead by local experts. This week’s film, Jackson, explores the conflict between religious freedom and reproductive rights in the Deep South. When state restrictions threaten to shut down the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the tensions between leaders of the pro-life and pro-choice movements come to a head. Wednesday, June 28. The Global Justice Center, 225 E. 26th St. Free.
. The Loft Cinema is teaming up with the Museum of Contemporary Art-Tucson for a series of free outdoor screenings. First up: Frida, a biopic about the life and career of one Frida Kahlo, one of Mexico’s most prominent, iconoclastic painters. Bella’s Gelato food truck will be on site selling tasty treats, or BYO picnic food. 8 p.m. Friday, June 23 at MOCA, 265 S. Church Ave. Future screenings take place on the fourth Friday of the month in July, August and September. Free.
. June is Cracked Cops month for the Loft Cinema’s Mondo Mondays, and it’s not too late to enjoy a campy police fun. Watch as young cop Jack Forrest finds himself as the main suspect in the investigation about his wife’s murder. As the cops dig deeper, the death toll rises. What’s a cop to do when the maniac he’s investigating also has a badge? 8 p.m. Monday, June 26. The Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. $3.
Movie Trivia Night
. Break out your brains, and head over to Crooked Tooth Brewery to participate in their first movie trivia night, hosted by Pablo Sandoval. The quiz will be seven rounds of tough movie trivia. Sound clip rounds, general knowledge rounds, picture rounds, theme rounds (including famous movie quotes) and rounds that include crowd participation. The winning team will receive a $50 Gift Certificate and the runner-up gets a $25 gift certificate. Bring your thinking caps and your friends and put your knowledge to the test. 8-10 p.m. Thursday, June 22. Crooked Tooth Brewing Co., 228 E. Sixth Street. Free.
Fun in General
. Enjoy an evening drive out to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum as Cool Summer Nights continue, offering us desert rats a little nocturnal fun at one of the most gorgeous attractions in Tucson. Enjoy a "Milky Way," specialty cocktail, make a comet with National Optical Astronomy Observatory and take a look at the wonders of the night skies. 5-10 p.m. Saturday, June 24. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Road. $8-$20.
. Drop everything! You need to get Demitri Martin tickets if you don’t have them. Don’t argue with that fact: Life is stressful, and you need a laugh. An author and staff writer at Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Martin became a regular on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Don’t miss this. 8 p.m., Friday, June 23, at The Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress St. Tickets are $28 to $47.
. This soon-to-be-giant singer-songwriter Brian Lopez returns from Europe, bringing his dreamy nuanced music back to his homeland. The piano and vibraphones, soft, effects-rich guitars and gentle heartbeat drums all serve to highlight Brian's hallucinogenic voice. Like Jeff Buckley, Lopez’s gift is not just to tell a story, but to make us feel it, and never in a manipulative or melodramatic way. Take "Static Noise,” the fleeting beauty of an aging actress onscreen is juxtaposed against the loss of a crumbling relationship. "But your signal's breaking up, and your static noise, it echoes all our love." The lyrics are evocative, but it’s the melody, sung simply as an altar boy and drenched in reverb, which allows us inside of the ache. Sensual, truthful, sad, Lopez's music is utterly sincere. He is taking Facebook requests for a Soundgarden song to cover; that impending heartbreak alone is well worth the price of admission. With Birds and Arrows on Friday, June 23 at Club Congress, 311 E. Congress. 8 p.m. $8-$10.
. Anyone who's ever rolled a blunt, hell any kid—black, white, gangsta or suburban who's ever gotten high in the last quarter century, is aware of Warren G. With memorable versus on The Chronic, Doggystyle, and his own platinum-shifter, G Funk Era, Mr. Warren G has always been the workhorse, the rock, the lone member of the 213 LBC with so little drama that he's oft overlooked. Maybe his friends are too talented: Warren is an above-average producer, but his step bro is Dr. Dre; he can rap, verse and freestyle, super proficiently, but his buddy Snoop has the most recognizable flow in the game; and he can singsong (think "This DJ"), but his late, great buddy Nate Dogg basically patented that whole sub-genre. Yet Warren persists. This tour promises all those G Funk Era faves, so tilt that brim, spit that blunt, and for god's sake don't be a buster—the G Child can still Regulate. With EZ Goin' at the Rialto Theater, 318 E. Congress, on Saturday, June 24. 7 p.m. $23-25, all ages.
The Invincible Czars score 1920 classic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde live
. For one thing, not many bands can say they've re-arranged and recorded the most famous ballet of all time, as a prog rock concept album. Likewise, not many rock outfits are equally as at home playing classical sendups as they are playing classic rock. But this is no ordinary band. Hailing from Austin, the Invincible Czars have a trad rock set-up, plus flute and violin. Their live presence is captivating, with tangible energy being created and exchanged between technically brilliant players. Fans of Frank Zappa and especially Dweezil's project, Zappa Plays Zappa, will appreciate the Czars' outlandish virtuosity—they re-scored the silent film Nosferatu, and re-imagined Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite. The Czars are art rock without pretension. Rather, they are truly strange. They seem to be from another time and place, like, say, Russia pre-WWI? If nothing else, go to hear them score the 1920 silent film classic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde out on the hotel plaza. It shall be incredible. Saturday, June 24 at Club Congress, 311 E. Congress. 7 p.m. Free. All ages.
. They’re one of those bands that should've made it outta the dirt-bag clubs. Back when psychobilly was all the throwback rage, Tiger Army got signed by Rancid's Tim Armstrong, did major tours with Social D and others, but somehow they never quite caught on. A shame too, ’cause singer/guitarist Nick 13 has a voice that matches, or even betters, Armstrong’s or Ness’s, it’s one part skinny Elvis, one part Ricky Nelson, and one part "Who Killed Bambi.” His classic ’billy greaser looks rival Eddie Cochran, with the updated neck-tats-and-kohl-eyes Hootenanny twist. The upright bass slap-’n’-thumps through busted love ditties and odes to tragic nights and its fallen or untouchable women. Like the Reverend Horton Heat, Tiger Army live shows kick, and they've only gotten better after 21(!) years of touring. Kick it! With Murder By Death. At Rialto Theater, 318 E. Congress, on Tuesday, June 27. 6 p.m. $23, all ages.