Cheap Thrills

THIRTY IS A GOOD ROUND NUMBER. Count 'em. Thirty performances in the Tucson Songwriter Showcase Concert Series. Thursday's version features the music of David Huckfelt, who has moved here recently from Iowa. He'll be joined by guest performer Bruce T. Campbell. This is, as the press release promises, a friendly, acoustic, non-smoking setting. It's also a great place to kick back, hear some great music and maybe even dance. Watch the café transform from a student hang-out to a more acoustic, folksy (non-smoky) pub. It starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Hazy Dayz Lounge Café, 187 N. Park Ave. at Ninth Street. And it's free. Call 749-1880 for more information.

HERE'S A FLICK. If you missed it when it came out in 1997 and you've been too lazy to rent it or, like me, you enjoy your films on something larger than a 20-inch screen, here's your chance to see The Tango Lesson for free. The International Arts Society Film Program (a phenomenal series at the UA both semesters) offers a no-frills screening of great flicks. Friday boasts this English and Argentinian film directed by Sally Potter (best known for her film Orlando, five years before this one). Here she not only directs, but actually plays opposite the lead tango dancer, Pablo Veron. She also plays with gender roles (not easy given the rigidity of tango's "the male leads" and "the female follows" roles). The tension between filmmaker as director and filmmaker as dancer is brilliant.

Screening begins at 7:30 p.m. at the UA's Modern Languages Auditorium located off Second Street near Mountain Avenue. Call 621-1836 with questions.

BACK TO LIFE. Here's a unique one--the first annual Survivors of Suicide Walk. It's spearheaded by participants of a similarly named support group whose motivation, other than to stay alive and thrive, is to strip the stigma of being a survivor of suicide. (Hey, haven't we all thought about it in a particularly dark-cloud moment?) Join them in raising awareness on Saturday at 8 a.m. (registration begins at 7 a.m.) at Reid Park Ramada 31. The walk brings together survivors, community leaders, entertainers and mental health professionals who recognize that every eight seconds, someone is thinking about killing themselves. Did you know that more people die from suicide than from homicide? And more than 800 people die of suicide every year in Arizona, leaving an average of six people intimately affected by each death? Walk the walk and raise funds to help survivors in their healing process.

ALIEN GRASS. No, it's not some new, amazing hallucinatory source. Non-native grasses have been invading Saguaro National Park and we have to show them the door (or trash bag). Come out on Saturday from 7 to 10 a.m. to lend a hand on the largest, one-day volunteer restoration event held for public lands each year. Come alone, come with a group of friends or co-workers. Gather at both the east and west districts of the park for National Public Lands Day, to rid the weeds that compete with native vegetation for precious water and nutrients and can cause fire to spread more rapidly through the desert. You'll be part of a national event encompassing 70,000 volunteers at 500 sites.

Advance registration is encouraged. Call the Saguaro National Park visitor center at 733-5153 (east) or 733-5158 (west).

ROCK MY SOUL. It's time for the second annual Old Time Gospel Concert. Members of the Phillips Chapel lift their voices in praise under the direction of Donna Price on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Guest singers from choirs all over Tucson will join them in traditional works as well as some more obscure hymns. You're invited to sing and pay tribute to the hymnody of great composers from days gone by. Seating at the church, 122 N. Fourth St. near Ninth Avenue in the Dunbar-Spring neighborhood, is limited, so call for reservations at 624-6310. Tickets cost a mere $5.

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