Friends of the Pima County Public Library Community Book Sale. Looking for a good book to read? Or looking for a book to add to your pile of books you're looking forward to reading when you have more time? There's always a good reason to buy a book, or a record, or a video, or an audiobook. All of these will be waiting for you at this sale. With 70 categories of books carefully curated and arranged, you're sure to find something you like, and the special Best of Friends room will have collectible and gift-quality selections as well. 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, March 25. Friends of the Pima County Public Library Book Barn, 2230 N. Country Club. Free.
Fourth Avenue Spring Street Fair. The Fourth Ave. Street Fair is one of those events that makes you hyper-aware of how quickly time is moving... didn't we just have the winter street fair? Oh, that was four months ago? What year is it? How old am I? It's the perfect way to soothe your angst about the passage of time, and also the perfect way to spend a March afternoon in Tucson. It brings more than half a million people to our sweet desert town, and brings you a perfect opportunity to get some shopping done for Mother's Day, Father's Day and all those spring weddings and birthdays coming up. 10 a.m. to dusk Friday, March 22 through Sunday, March 24. Fourth Avenue. Free.
Spring Break! Family Fun Day at the Farmer's Market. Trail Dust Town and the Heirloom Farmers Markets are hosting a day full of fun for kids, families and anyone who enjoys food. So, everyone! Fifteen local vendors, live music, face painting and a kids' area with hula hoops are just some of the offerings. They'll also have $6 wristbands to provide unlimited access to the Ferris wheel, carousel and train. Many of the gift shops will be open as well, and Trail Dust Town's newest neighbor, Millie's Pancake Haus, will be serving breakfast and lunch. Let the games begin! 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, March 22. Trail Dust Town, 6541 E. Tanque Verde Road. Free.
Complexions Contemporary Ballet: Stardust, From Bach to Bowie. You might have heard of this ballet company's dancers from So You Think You Can Dance or, if you're into the world of dance companies, because it was founded by former members of Alvin Ailey, Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden. In this tribute to David Bowie, a crew of dancers exuding equal parts talent, charisma and sexual energy dance styles ranging from ballet to hip hop. As the title suggests, the program is set to a wide range of music, all of which encapsulate the world of glitter and glam that Bowie was so much a part of. It's the type of thing you'll enjoy if you love technically excellent dancing, but also the type of thing you'll enjoy if you love music, excitement, sparkles or any fun at all. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 27. Centennial Hall, 1020 E. University Blvd. $19 to $80+.
Theater and Music
Fifth Annual David Russell Bach Prize Finalists Recital. The Tucson Guitar Society is closing this year's International Artists Series with Grammy Award-winning guitarist David Russell, of Spain and Scotland, and French performer Gabriel Bianco. Russell comes back to the UA annually to teach, perform, and judge this recital, which features four top guitar students from the Fred Fox School of Music playing work by Bach. This year's winner gets a custom guitar by German luthier Dennis Tolz, who will also be at the event. 7 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, March 20. Holsclaw Hall, 1017 N. Olive Road. $10.
Spring Moon Flute Concert. Is there anything more Zen than the shakauhuchi, a traditional Japanese bamboo flute whose sound is shaped by silence as much as by breath? Not that we know of. To celebrate the first night of spring, Paul Amiel, former music director of the Rogue Theatre, who spent a couple years living in Japan and studying this instrument, and who frequently performs with his ensemble Kyklo, will be playing a show at Yume Japanese Gardens. It's a full moon the night before the event, so the traditional melodies will be floating through an air filled with almost-full moonbeams. 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 21. Yume Japanese Gardens, 2130 N. Alvernon Way. $18 tickets must be bought in advance.
The Illusionists. People on fire! People being cut in half! People making stuff disappear! People finding your card in really strange places! If you don't think you like magic shows, maybe you just haven't been to a really cool one yet. And The Illusionists, a direct-from-Broadway show featuring five of the world's best illusionists, has shattered box office records all over the world with how good it is. So this would be a perfect example of a "really cool one." Should you check it out? Abracadab-duh. 8 p.m. on Friday, March 22. 2 and 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 23. Centennial Hall, 1020 E. University Blvd. $10 off for students and $5 off for seniors and military (except for seats in the Gold Circle). $19 to $90.
Illusionist Rob Lake. Rob Lake has appeared and disappeared in front of audiences all over the world. Named "The Top Illusionist in the World" by Caesars Entertainment, Lake also appeared on season 13 of America's Got Talent, and in 2008, he became the youngest magician in the world to receive the Merlin Award, the magic community's highest honor. So yeah, he's a pretty big deal. And who doesn't love watching an entire man and entire motorcycle disappear from a stage in a blaze of fiery glory, or to watch someone safely be cut into several pieces? Don't miss the magic. Doors at 7 p.m., show at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 23. Desert Diamond Casino–Sahuarita, 110 W. Pima Mine Road, Sahuarita. $32.50 to $52.50
The Works of Andrew Lloyd Webber & Stephen Sondheim. The phaaaaantom of the opera is theeeeeere. And so is Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street; Joseph and his amazing technicolor dreamcoat; and Rose and Louise from Gypsy. Musical theater nerds unite! The works of two of the art form's most iconic trailblazers are coming to the stage in one night full of incredible melodies, brilliant lyrics and an audience full of people who will probably be singing along. TSO and a cast of Broadway singers will perform selections from Webber and Sondheim's works that will have you getting ready to join a local theater troupe. 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 23, and 2 p.m. Sunday, March 24. Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. $15 to $96.
The Secret Garden. We could all use a story about flowers and growth and redemption right about now, right? And we could especially use it in musical form. The story of little Mary Lennox's search for the secret garden, and the life lessons, lifelong friends and life force she finds within herself along the way, is a timeless classic. Based on the 1911 novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, this Tony Award-winning musical will have you feeling happy and hopeful. 7 p.m. Friday, March 22, and March 29. 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday, March 23, and March 30. 2 p.m. Sunday, March 24, and March 31. Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway Blvd. $20 GA, $15 seniors/students/military, $10 kids 12 and under in advance. Prices increase $5 at the door.
Heather Hardy Band. Heather Hardy has been playing piano since she was six and violin since she was nine, and has been featured on more than 200 albums in her career. Now, the blues artist is based in Tucson, where she plays with her band (though she spends several months of the year performing in New York). The band is playing at Monterey Court in this fundraiser for TIHAN, a local network of religious, secular, corporate and nonprofit organizations that provides support for people in Tucson living with HIV. It's some seriously good music for a seriously good cause, so come on down to support and enjoy! 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, March 22. Monterey Court Studio Galleries and Café, 505 W. Miracle Mile. $20 donation—or whatever else you're able to give on top of that!
BREAKDOWN/BREAKTHROUGH. The Carport Theater is putting on this community performance event they're describing as "metaphysical vaudeville," which, as far as we're concerned, should be a more common type of vaudeville. Through audience participation in a series of scenarios—one in which a young girl's life is torn apart and she's reborn as a she-wolf, one in which a betrayal is revealed, one in which someone recognizes an urgent, unmet need—the show tackles major issues like finding meaning and happiness. One of the lines in the show, for example, is, "Does my suffering offend? It may. Suffering offends both the one who tells and the one who listens." 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 22 and Saturday, March 23. The Carport Theater, 3614 E. Presidio Road. Free, but reservations required, and can be made at carporttheater.com.
Thunder and Lightning Over Arizona. No, it's not monsoon season yet. It's Davis-Monthan's free air show and open house! See aircraft like the Air Force Thunderbirds, an A-10 Thunderbolt and a 22 Raptor, and watch a demo by U.S. Customs & Border Protection. The Red Bull helicopter and skydiving team will also be around to ooh and awe over, as will a shockwave jet truck. Big names in the world of aerobatic pilots, like Kirby Chambliss, Kent Pietsch and Vicky Benzing will be soaring through the air overhead, making you wonder why you never ended up pursuing your childhood dream of becoming a pilot. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 23 to Sunday, March 24. Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, 5405 E. Granite St. Free.
UA Campus Arboretum Tour. Did you even know that the University of Arizona has a national arboretum? And there's lots to learn about it! Take this opportunity to learn about how this lovely green oasis arose from the sands of the Sonora. Not to mention to spend a nice, March mid-morning walking among a lovely selection of trees and other plants. They say if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. We say if you can't arbor-etum, then try harder to make time in your schedule, because it's worth checking out. 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 27. Tour begins at the fountain on the west side of Old Main, 1200 E. University Blvd. (Second Street Garage is the nearest place to park.) Free, but reservations required at visitorcenter.arizona.edu.
Tohono Chul Spring Plant Sale. Maybe you're good at keeping plants alive. Maybe you're not. But hey, the only way to get better at something is to give it another try, right? With more than 1,200 species of plants, the Tohono Chul Spring Plant Sale is bound to have something sturdy enough to thwart even the most notorious "I forgot to water them for three weeks!"ers. You can even select specific blooming vegetation to attract local cuties like butterflies and hummingbirds. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 23, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 24 Propagation Area at Tohono Chul, 7211 N. Northern Ave. Free admission during the sale.
The Urban Garden Festival + Plant Sale. It's really easy to forget where your food comes from, or at least to not think about it. The Tucson Botanical Gardens is having this event dedicated to helping us reconnect to our food, and to give us the chance to purchase some pleasant little plants. Enjoy a day of cooking demonstrations, live music in the shade and plenty of food vendors to hold you over until you get to go home and make some of the food you see in the demonstrations. Ready, set, grow! 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, March 24. Tucson Botanical Gardens, 2150 N. Alvernon Way. $15 adults, $8 kid 4 to 17 and $13 for students/seniors/military. Members and kids under 3 get in FREE!