48th Annual TMC Saguaro National Park 8-Miler. The Southern Arizona Roadrunners are hosting one of the few races that takes place on National Park land. The trail includes a number of hills, but it also has a number of aid stations to balance that out, and a 5k course if eight miles sounds a little too ridiculous. If you’re hesitant about waking up early on Labor Day to exercise, think about all of the extra room a morning workout will give you for calories at the afternoon barbecue. Over 1400 people registered for last year’s race, but this year, it will be capped off at 750. The event will raise money for SAR, the Children’s Fitness Fund and Friends of Saguaro National Park. 6:25 a.m. start time. Monday, Sept. 4. Saguaro National Park East 3693 S. Old Spanish Trail Rd. $50 for 8-miler, $40 for 5k.
5th Annual Willcox Flyer Bike Ride. Take a ride up Highway 186 to the top of the Don Cabezas Mountains (elevation gain 1,129 ft), and, if those 33 miles aren’t enough for you, keep going for another 33 until you hit the entrance to Chiricahua National Monument (total elevation gain 1,965). Willcox is about 10 degrees cooler than Tucson at this time of year, and the ride starts early, so you probably won’t even be biking in 100 degree weather. Probably. Olympic cyclist Mike Allen will also lead a leisurely eight miler for kids, families or beginners. The course has 3 aid stations, and post ride festivities in Railroad Ave Park will include live music, food and vendors. Packet pick-up/Race day registration 6 to 6:45 a.m. 7 a.m. start for 66 miler, 7:05 start for 33 miler, 7:10 start for 8 miler. Festivities 9 a.m. to noon. Saturday, Sept. 2. Railroad Ave. Park, 100 S. Railroad Ave. $15-$50.
Say Goodbye to the Dog Days of Summer. But say hello to aquatic dog sports, brought to you by the original doggie paddlers. Dogs in pools are clinically shown to combine all the joys and therapeutic benefits of dogs and pools. The Pima Animal Care Center will have dogs up for adoption at Old Tucson Saturday and Sunday, Fun for K9s will present dog sensory shows (which sound sort of like scent scavenger hunts?) And K9 Dance will perform on Monday. One dollar from each adult admission all weekend will be donated to PACC. 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 2 to 5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 4. Old Tucson, 201 S. Kinney Rd. $18.95 for adults, free for kids 11 and under.
Pets. At the intersection of artistic sensibilities and fierce loyalty lies an art gallery that is centered around the animals we call our best friends. The Contreras gallery celebrates the opening of its new exhibit, which is dedicated to pets and animals, at a Saturday evening reception that is sure to have something for everypawdy and their moth-fur. See the art of artists like Gene Hall, Margot Huntington and Marcy Miranda Janes, who is known for her intricate paper-cutting art. 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 2. Contreras Gallery 110 E. Sixth St. Free.
2nd Annual Putt for Paws Golf Tournament. The secondary title for this event might as well be “Kegs for K9s,” because the tournament, the proceeds of which benefit the Humane Society of Southern Arizona, has kegs throughout the course. Did we mention the free Bloody Mary bar? Hit the course for a good cause at this fun-filled event filled with heart. 7:30 a.m. shotgun start. Saturday, Sept. 9. Ventana Canyon Golf & Racquet Club 6200 N. Club House Lane. $100 per player or $375 for a foursome.
ESL & Citzenship Classes. IMPACT of Southern Arizona is hosting classes every Wednesday from Oct. 4 to May 16 for anyone who wants to improve their English. Morning and evening sessions make these events convenient to attend regardless of your schedule. These classes are important, impactful and (almost equally exciting) offered completely free of charge. Registration is Wednesday, Sept. 20 from 9 to 11 a.m. at Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church, 3201 E. Mountainaire Dr. Evening registration is from 6 to 8 p.m. at IMPACT of Southern Arizona 2525 E. Hawser St. Morning sessions are head. at Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Evening sessions are held at IMPACT of Southern Arizona from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Call 520-825-0009 for more information.
Why Black History Matters. Yeah, sure, all history matters, but consider the fact that the word “black” doesn’t appear on the Wikipedia pages for “History of Tucson, Arizona” or “Timeline of Tucson, Arizona” and then attend this valuable program as a part of the Arizona History Museum's First Fridays series. Community historian Bernard Wilson discusses his exhibit about the black Tucsonans and Southern Arizonans who helped to build the Tucson of today. Friday, Sept. 1. 6 p.m. Arizona History Museum, 949 E. 2nd St. Included with museum admission (which is two for one from 4 to 8 p.m.) $4 to $8, free for AHS members, veterans and children under 6. Active military duty free through labor day.
MuseumsPackrat Party. The final Saturday of the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum’s Cool Summer Nights Series celebrates packrats (the adorable rodents, not the hoarders from that A&E series) and the museum’s 65th birthday! There will be a music program, treats from Mad Batter Bakery, face painting, photo booths and a talk from Sergio Avila about animals after dark. The museum is also promoting the opening of its Packrat Playhouse in Spring 2018, an indoor exhibit with building, collecting and climbing activities for families with packrat tendencies. 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 2. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Rd. Regular Admission Rates, $8 to $20.50.
DeGrazia’s Fun and Games. A selection of works from across several artistic eras and 40 years of Ted DeGrazia’s career will be displayed through January. This opening reception celebrates the exhibit’s theme, which is centered around play, one of life’s most precious and important arts. Exuberant nuns and angel, frolicsome children and even playful grown-ups are depicted in these pieces. 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1. 6300 N. Swan Rd. Free.
Art, Nature, Devotion. MOCA hosts this multimedia event with the music of local composers, along with videographers, photographers and graphic designers from throughout the country. Experience synesthesia as you watch music play out before your eyes and hear paintings come to life in this poetic event for ponderers and people of all sorts. 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 31. Great Hall, MOCA Tucson, 265 S. Church Ave. $10. Museums.
Archery After Dark. Maybe you’ve attended the International Wildlife Museum’s after dark events in the past, but didn’t feel like there were enough weapons. Maybe you’re an avid archer who wants to mix up your traditional daytime routine. Or maybe you’re looking for a new hobby and are willing to take a shot in the dark. At this event, archery mini-lessons will be offered for kids and grown-ups ages nine and up, and compound bows and arrows will be provided. Starting at 6 p.m., there will also be movies, scavenger hunts, and live animal encounters. 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 8 International Wildlife Museum 4800 W. Gates Pass Rd. $12 for adults, $7 for kids ages nine and up, $3 for museum members.
CreativityMake ’n Take–Creativity Workshop. Genie Joseph, an author and professor with a PhD in screenwriting, and her service dog Sophia, lead an event to help participants discover their creative potential. In the spirit of creativity, there will be a variety of methods, from writing exercises to theater games to working with color to puppet storytelling. And this is an event for adults! Give yourself the chance to get your creative juices flowing and pick up that project idea that you’ve set aside for the last few years. 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1. Eckstrom-Columbus Library, 4350 E. 22nd St. Free.
Type-in Tuesday. Head back in time and into your mind for a moment at Public Brewhouse at this Hemingway-esque event. Bring a typewriter and write about what you’re thinking, what you’re dreaming, or even what you need to get done. Or don’t bring your typewriter, and write about those things on paper. Or don’t write at all. Enjoy a world with beer and without internet for a few hours and inspiration is sure to strike. 4 to 11 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 5. Public Brewhouse, 209 N. Hoff Ave. Free.
Fun in GeneralTucson’s Only Dueling Pianos Show. Watch two baby grand pianos go head to head in this Wild West-style shoot out that will leave only one piano standing. Well… maybe that’s not exactly what’s going to happen. TUNE in for a more light-hearted affair: music, comedy, song requests, cocktails and (after the cocktails) singing along. Proceeds from the event, including all tips given to the performers, will benefit Tu Nitido, a nonprofit that works to help children impacted by grief. 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 7. Site 17 Event Center, 840 E. 17th St. $75.
Friends Trivia Night. You know exactly how many girls Joey slept with over the course of the series, you learned to play guitar with the “bear claw,” “turkey leg” and “old lady” chords and you know way too much about Janis’ backstory. What you don’t realize is that, this whole time, you’ve been training. Whether you watched the series week-by-week through the nineties, had the VHS box set or treat yourself to a little Netflix binge every night, every episode has been in preparation for this night. The winner will receive a $50 gft card, and the runner-up will receive a $25 gift card at this event hosted by Trivia Master Pablo Sandoval. 8 to 10 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 31. Crooked Tooth Brewing Co. 228 E. 6th St. Free.
WildcatsBear Down Friday. These UA pep rallies go through November, but this one kicks off the season as the Wildcats prepare to face off against the NAU Lumberjacks on Saturday, Sept. 2. A spirit party with giveaways, media celebrities and ESPN Tucson’s “Zach Clark Show” begins at 3 p.m., and a Junior Cats Zone beginning at 4 p.m. will include a petting zoo, UA Wildcat Hockey and balloon art. Get ready to bear down for the pep rally, starting at 6 p.m. with the Pride of Arizona Marching Band, color guard and UA Cheer. Parking is free in the Tyndall Garage after 4 p.m. with merchant validation. Friday, Sept. 1. 4 to 7 p.m. Main Gate Square, 800 E. University Blvd. Free.
Bubble Battle World Record. grazb, a social networking app, celebrates its launch at the UA with an attempt to break the world record for the most people blowing bubbles at the same time. While this might just sound like your average networking events for college students to exchange desperate, bubbly pleasantries with potential employers, people will be blowing actual soap orbs. UA is only one of about 100 universities participating, but every bubble blower counts, as the current world record is from July of 2007, where 34,529 people at 198 venues throughout the UK all put bubble wand to air stream at once. 10 a.m. to noon. Saturday, Sept. 9. University of Arizona, 1657 E. Helen Rd. Free.
NightcrawlerJessica Hernandez and the Deltas. A strong Latina resembling the little sis of Amy Winehouse and Gloria Estefan steps to the mic. Powerful voice, trilling at times like Sleater-Kinney, but more traditionally listenable. Rich and full like Gaga before the processing, with hints of PJ Harvey at her most convincing. … If you’re not already on ticketfly pressing “Purchase,” you should be—her band equally amazes. The Deltas sweetly blend The Ventures (think “Walk Don’t Run”) and Dick Dale, run through a fluid Latino-music filter and the confidence to break into cumbia or meringue as the pop songs unfold. Hailing from Detroit’s soulful Mexicantown, Jessica and the Deltas have been dishing up canciones since 2010, mixing the best of ’60s Motown musicality, pouty post-Cyndi-Lauper delivery and an up-to-the-moment female perspective on relationships and heartbreak. No wonder Don Was got them early. With Fairy Bones on Tuesday, Sept. 5. At The Flycatcher, 340 E. Sixth St. Doors: 7:30. 21+, $10-$13.
Fayuca. Imagine if Sublime’s groove wasn’t in service to the “Wrong Way” but used to mend a busted heart. Or if Reel Big Fish’s hook-rich ska highlighted 100 years of government oppression instead of ironically inviting us to “Sell Out.” This is Fayuca, a Phoenix-based rock-reggae outfit promoting, gosh!, positivity and empathy in both English and Spanish. More Jimmy Cliff than Miles Doughty, Fayuca nonetheless sports the pop-reggae scizz of Slightly Stoopid, without succumbing to the trappings of a weed party band. Tunes like “Shoot It Up” focus on the suffering of the person doing the drugs, as opposed to reveling in being that person. At their most political, they recall Manu Chao—upbeat and raucous, directly addressing injustice. This show, in the presence of the oversized Tiki head on Fourth Avenue, promises to be a night of unironic oneness, thank the gods. With Mouse Powell and Black Bottom Lighters on Saturday, Sept. 2. The Hut, 305 N. Fourth Ave. Doors: 8 p.m. 21+.
Lethal Injektion. Three thrash guitarists bang heads in unison! The rhythm section keeps old Beavis-groove time. A pair of white dudes rotate on the mic; one breaks it down Juggalo-style: “It’s like world war three—I’m the last soldier you ever want to see,” and the other burps reverb-drenched vocals in his best leopard-fur trench coat and tribal spacers. This is Tucson’s Lethal Injektion, whose heavy, driving beats and a-melodic riffs encourage tattooed thumbheads to open their hearts. This is skin-charred desert din, enjoyed with neon-hued energy drinks in the face of blinding sunrays. We imagine this blaring from Stone Avenue head shops, as we pick out water pipes and live someone else’s nostalgia for shoplifting from Hot Topic and then pulling the mall’s fire alarm. Harmless joy! With Head Rust, Fatal Malady, Dead Man Dom, Tribulance, Message to the Masses and Mr. Wiley on Friday, Sept. 1. At Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress. Doors: 6:30. $5-$8, cheap! All age.
Melvins. Buzz Osborn’s mad corkscrew fro is as recognizable as his tree-shredder vocals (note: there’d be no Nirvana or Mudhoney without him). But don’t go see them just ’cause they birthed grunge; after three decades of touring, The Melvins are one of the tightest, best live rock shows you’ll likely ever see on a stage. (Redd Kross’ Steven McDonald on bass!) Meandering, sludgy riffs squirm across your skin, rhythms alter heart-rate patterns, and the whole deal tap dances on the inside edges of your skull. Such rock shows no longer exist. This tour, sadly, doesn’t feature two drummers, but their recent live shows as a trio slay, full of the stuff that made a band like Tool great, minus all the self-seriousness (or Maynard’s table wine). Considering their endless hardcore props, The Melvins never enjoyed commercial success—they’re an eternal underground sensation, damned to the end. God bless. With Spotlights NYC on Wednesday, Sept. 6 at 191 Toole. Doors: 7 p.m. $20-$23. 21+.