THEATRE BEAT. Boost the fortunes of downtown's venerable old Fox Theatre with a classic movie screening.
Not a tough way to help out, if you ask us. The Fox closed in 1974 after more than 40 years as a movie house and gathering point for Tucson's citizenry. Then it endured a couple decades of indignity behind a slapped-up facade.
But the theatre is now on the rebound. To celebrate its pending rebirth, La Placita Village and the Tucson Fox Theatre Foundation present weekly outdoor screenings of film classics. Tonight's selection is His Girl Friday, a '40s-era romantic comedy starring Cary Grant as a high-powered newspaper editor and Rosalind Russell as his star reporter--and ex-wife. As Russell awaits her wedding to a new flame, Grant reveals his lingering love by trying to scuttle her second date with matrimony.
Film series continues at 7:30 p.m. each Thursday at La Placita Village, 110 S. Church Ave., on the southwest corner of Church Avenue and Broadway Boulevard. Admission is free, but donations are suggested. For details, call 623-2748.
WEE PICASSOS. Artistic tots can run amok at Bookman's annual sidewalk chalk-drawing extravaganza.
Budding Picassos strut their creative stuff--usually leaning heavily towards the abstract--on walkways outside the Grant Road store. Bring a hat and plenty of sunscreen. Chalk will be provided.
Free event runs from 11 a.m. to noon at Bookman's Used Books, 1930 E. Grant Road. Call 325-5767 for details.
INTERNATIONAL AFFAIR. "The border," Tom Russell sings, "is an evil of man." And how.
Regardless of which side of the fence you fall on, politically or otherwise, there's still plenty of suffering along the U.S.-Mexico line. Coalición de Derechos Humanos notes the plight of thousands--and our common humanity--with a vigil in Armory Park. The gathering includes labor, church and human rights leaders, and folks are encouraged to bring banners, crosses, pictures and names of people who have died at the border.
Vigil begins at 7 p.m. in Armory Park, located at 15th Street and Fourth Avenue. For information, call 790-1373.
WEATHER WARP. Thumb your nose at the gods of meteorology and catch some jumpin' jive when the Fourth Avenue Merchants Association kicks off its summer Monsoon Madness series.
This time out, the friendly little stage of the Winsett Performing Arts Center features the Elemenopees and The Knotts, doing their thing under lush, moody skies. And best of all, it won't cost you one thin dime.
Performances run from 7 to 10 p.m. each Friday at Winsett Performing Arts Center, on Fourth Avenue between Seventh and Eighth streets. Call 624-5004 for information.
THE KING COMETH. Tex-Mex monarch Joe King Carrasco returns to Tucson as part of Plaza Palomino's Courtyard Concert Series.
For this "nuevo wavo" dance party, Carrasco fires up his chile-laced blend of pop rock with cumbias, calypso, salsa and polka. The hair-raising mix has won him kudos from the top: Bruce "the Boss" Springsteen calls Carrasco one of the four best rock acts in the world.
Catch the King at 8 p.m. in Plaza Palomino, at the intersection of Fort Lowell and Swan roads. Advance tickets are $14, available at Hear's Music, Antigone Books, Orange Grove Brew and Vine and Enchanted Earthworks. To reserve tickets by phone, call 297-9133. They'll cost $16 at the door.
WELL-TRAINED. Tiny steamers from across the land converge at the 26th biannual Toy Train Show.
Little rails are up for sale, along with elaborate displays by top aficionados of the mini-train world. The transit smorgasbord is sponsored by the Gadsden-Pacific Division Toy Train Operating Museum. You might recall these fellas from their former days in the Foothills Mall. Now they're in the home stretch of establishing a new museum, tentatively slated to open by Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Toy Train Show continues from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Rodeway Inn Event Center, 1365 W. Grant Road. Admission is $2, free for children under age 13. Call 721-1085 for information.
DOWN BY THE RIVER. Live Theatre Workshop revisits Mark Twain with a production of Tom Sawyer.
Tom, Becky and Huck address thinly veiled questions of race, class and coming-of-age in this very American masterpiece, set in a small town on the fringes of the antebellum South.
Show time is 1 p.m. Sundays through June 25 at the Live Theatre Workshop, 5317 E. Speedway Blvd. Tickets are $5, available by phone at 327-4242.
TRACK RECORD. Help wildlife conservation and learn a few tracking skills with Sky Island Alliance.
The group is seeking volunteers to search for tracks of mountain lions, black bears and other wildlife at Fort Huachuca, near Sierra Vista. No experience is necessary--some of the best tracking teachers and lion experts west of the Alleghenies will be on hand to show you the ropes.
For information on the free event, call 795-2704.
DEEP-SEA SLEUTH. Whodunit whiz Randy Wayne White will be on hand for a book signing in Clues Unlimited bookstore.
Wayne arrives toting his latest tome, Ten Thousand Islands, which continues Florida marine biologist Doc Ford's mysterious adventures.
A veteran fishing guide who hosts a fishing show on PBS, White also plays senior league baseball for the Fort Meyers Bombers. His books have earned high marks for their ambiance, relevant social issues, superb plotting and effortless prose.
Book signing runs from 5 to 7 p.m. at Clues Unlimited, 123 S. Eastbourne in Broadway Village. Call 326-8533 for information.
SAFETY FIRST. Families focus on security and good times at Safe Night of Tucson 2000.
Billed as "an evening of fun with learning woven in," the night's action highlights gun safety, abstinence (now there's a concept!) and conflict solving--in other words, providing families with new ways to deal with old, everyday problems. Refreshments and good cheer are sponsored by the "A-Team," including "A" Mountain Community House, "A" Betterment Association, "A" Mountain Neighborhood Association, and House of Prayer.
Safe Night runs from 4 to 9:30 p.m. in the Archer Center, 1665 S. La Cholla Blvd. Admission is two cans of food for the Tucson Community Food Bank. Call 331-2586 for details.
MALL CALL. Yep, it's that time of year when City Week's thoughts turn to cooler confines. What better place to find respite from del sol and chase your wildest consumer dreams than the Tucson Mall?
Thankfully, you now have a purchase-free excuse for chilling out with the mall's Hot Nights--Cool Jazz series. Tonight's premiere outing features the top-notch Round Midnight band with John Ronstadt. The series continues throughout the month with Big Swing Face, the Larry Redhouse Quartet and the Ed Friedland Quartet.
Hot Nights--Cool Jazz runs from 6 to 8 p.m. each Tuesday through July in The Tucson Mall Center Court. Admission is free. For information, call 293-7330.
SPICE O' LIFE. The Tucson-Pima Arts Council offers a smorgasbord of visions with its new Thirteen Varieties exhibit.
Displaying work from members of Artists 13, the show arises from an idea spawned during a 1985 Tubac workshop, when Carole Green, Ann Nicoll, Betty Plank and Marge Schuler had a collective brainstorm. What emerged was a distinct mission: creating a group of accomplished oil painters "deeply interested in pursuing more knowledge and experience in the art world by participating together in oil painting workshops, study sessions and field trips."
Those goals have coalesced into fundraisers, annual shows, and endless junkets to locales ranging from Scottsdale to Mexico's San Miguel de Allende. Now their bounty arrives in Tucson, and features pieces by current Artist 13 members Dott Beeson, Roger Ermili, Ann Gillingham, Carole Green, Bob Hessemer, Alyce Jones, Marvin Metzger, Don Mosbarger, Ann Nicoll, Ann Over, Betty Plank, Marge Schuler and Betty Udell.
Thirteen Varieties continues through July 10 in the T/PAC Community Gallery, 240 N. Stone Ave. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For information, call 624-0595.
HARVEST HOME. Sick of yanking out well-worn membership cards just to snag Vienna wienies and Cheetos at your local grocery giant? Try ditching the cards--and the lousy processed pablum--with a trip to "The Original" Downtown Farmers Market.
Held every Wednesday in the heart of Tucson, these outdoor smorgasbords feature everything from fresh bread and spicy salsa to tamales, local honey, great produce and unique gifts, all under (generally) temperate Sonoran skies.
The Downtown Farmers Market runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the south lawn of the Tucson-Pima Main Library, 101 N. Stone Ave. Call 326-7810 for details.
ART IN-FLIGHT. When you think of airports you might conjure up frothing terrorists, shredded luggage, flight delays and starched security guards. But do you think art?
Well, you should start, given the Tucson International Airport's new exhibit, Art Flora: Botanical Abstractions in Oil. The show features work by longtime luminaries Charlotte Bender, Sylvia Garland and Kathleen Lewis.
As Bender exuberantly sums up her contributions, "These painting are about paint, glorious paint." Her subject matter centers on her favorite place, namely the desert surrounding her home and backyard.
Garland calls her work abstract-botanical expressionism, and takes her inspiration from things she's attracted to, particularly found objects. To these rudiments she adds layers of interpretation, resulting in explorations of the "continuation of life with its many mysteries."
Provoking her canvas into new ways of looking at nature, Kathleen Lewis makes use of abstracted natural forms superimposed on rectangular shapes. The results compartmentalize the picture plane, and depict human attempts to enclose or contain nature. This juxtaposition of natural forms and man-made shapes also emphasizes conflicts between the natural and "artificial" worlds.
Art Flora continues through June 30 at the Tucson International Airport, on the center core ticketing level. For details, call 573-4868.