Drag Queen Story Hour at MOCA. Drag culture is fun and boisterous and fabulous. So are the best childhoods. These two worlds come together this weekend when Lil Miss Hot Mess does a special reading of her latest picture book, “If You’re a Drag Queen and You Know It.” This sing-along book with a drag twist teaches kids a bit about this fantastically fun culture, and books will be available for purchase as well. 11 a.m. to noon. Saturday, June 4. Tucson Museum of Contemporary Art, 265 S. Church Ave. Free, with museum admission waived for event attendees as well.
Discovery Nights at the Children’s Museum. Bring the kids on down for a night full of fun bilingual programming blending both arts and sciences. Kids will love the interactive science experiments, such as a cloud in a bottle, robot hands and oobleck (from the Dr. Seuss book). Budding artists will love the nebula spin art, pumpkin playdough and something called a sound sandwich. And everyone will love bilingual storytime! Oh, to be a kid in a children’s museum, where the world is your oyster and everything is exciting. 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, June 2. Children’s Museum Tucson, 200 S. Sixth Ave. Free.
First Friday Shorts.
This one is exciting! For years, the Loft has hosted a monthly short film contest, in which anyone can submit a short film under 15 minutes to have it played on the big screen. The catch? Each film is guaranteed to only play for three minutes, and then the audience can call for the hosts to strike the dreaded gong and stop the film. Or they can let it play if they like it. It’s a raucous celebration of local filmmakers, some of whom get gonged and return to a later First Friday with a reworked masterpiece. Bridgitte Thum of KXCI is the perfect host. The monthly grand prize is $200, and at the annual showdown between each month’s winner, the grand prize is $1,000. 9 p.m. Friday, June 3. Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. $8 GA.
Chillin’ at the Chul. We’ve been trying to deny it here in our house, but the truth is that it’s starting to get hot. Any opportunity to stay cool other than by sitting pantsless in front of the air conditioner at your own house is a treasure. Which makes this first-ever summer series at Tohono Chul a great one! In the shade of their mature trees, things are about 10 degrees cooler. You can stroll through the gardens eating Sonoran hot dogs, street tacos or griddled corn, and drinking alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks. This week’s live music provided by DJ Humbleianess. 5 to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays June 3 through Sept. 3. Tohono Chul, 7366 Paseo del Norte. $15 adults, $13 seniors/military/student, $6 kids 5 to 12.
How to Make an American Son.
From Honduran-born Mando’s perspective, it’s inconvenient that the downturn of his cleaning empire is coinciding exactly with the need to rein in his spoiled, American-born son Orlando. From Orlando’s perspective, he’s suddenly being asked to handle way too much at once, including the future of his father’s entire enterprise. The newest Arizona Theatre Company show asks what happens with the promise of the American Dream collides with the realities of immigration. June 4 to 25, with shows at 7:30 p.m. or 2 p.m. Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. Preview shows through June 9 are $25 to $58. Shows opening night an onward are $40 to $7.
Music Under the Stars. Another week, another concert in the park. You won’t hear us complaining! This week, Tucson Pops brings us a selection by the likes of Sousa, Grieg, Brahms and many more. You’ll even hear orchestral takes on hits like “Bohemian Rhapsody” “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” and Fiddler on the Roof’s “If I Were a Rich Man.” Vocalist Armen Dirtadian, who has been singing all over the Old Pueblo for more than 40 years, is this week’s special guest artist. 7 p.m. Sunday, June 5. DeMeester Outdoor Performance Center in Reid Park, 900 S. Randolph Way.
Encaustic Art Exhibit. Encaustic art is basically painting with colored hot wax. Some of the best-known encaustic art works are the Fayum funeral portraits back from the first and second centuries AD, but it’s enjoyed a resurgence in the past 30 years or so, since new tech has made it easier (hello hotplates!) Come see some of this vibrant and fascinating art by local artists in this partnership between Roche Tissue Diagnostics and SAACA. The night also features refreshments, live music and gallery tours. 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 8. Roche Tissue Diagnostics – Ventana Gallery, 1910 E. Innovation Park Dr. Free, but register in advance at saaca.org/ventanagallery.
Dario’s Urban BBQ.
The first in a new series of dining events, this five-course, paired dining experience is brought to you by HUB Executive Chef Dario Hernandez. And who doesn’t love a BBQ tapas party? Check out five individual tapas stations where staff will serve you food and give you the lowdown, pairing each one with a cocktail, beer or mocktail. TFQ Jazz is providing live music for this mouthwatering night full of smoked and grilled dishes in lovely downtown Tucson. 7 p.m. Thursday, June 9. 300 E. Congress Street’s hidden courtyard. $80 (includes service charge and free parking).
Kingfisher Road Trip: Southwest Week.
You know summer has arrived when the Kingfisher launches its summer road trip series, in which each week features a new regional menu. They’re kicking off the 29th year of this culinary celebration with their Southwest menu, presented by Chef Jim Murphy. Seafood albondigas, baked gulf oysters, guaymas shrimp, venison stew, chocolate flan and a Sonoran spritz will have your mouth watering and your brain thinking, “You know, summer in Tucson is actually really nice!” Kingfisher is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Menu available through June 11. Kingfisher Bar & Grill, 2564 E. Grant Road.