City Week

Christopher Walken and some other stuff

Arizona After DOMA

Death of DOMA

4 to 5:15 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 28

James E. Rogers College of Law Ares Auditorium (Room 164)

1201 E. Speedway Blvd.

Three local experts are taking it upon themselves to answer questions about how the death of the Defense of Marriage Act will play out in Arizona.

The event, which will be conducted in a Q&A format, will focus on the Supreme Court decisions in Windsor v. United States and Hollingsworth v. Perry.

UA law professors Toni Massaro and Barbara Atwood and attorney Steven Phillips will lead the discussion about the cases, and financial and legal implications for attorneys and same-sex couples in the state.

DOMA, which was signed into law by President Bill Clinton in September 1996, was a United States federal law that allowed states to ignore same-sex marriages granted in other states. Until the third section of the act was ruled unconstitutional in June, DOMA prevented same-sex couples from being recognized as "spouses" in federal laws and for federal marriage benefits.

Atwood and Massaro wrote "Gay Marriage: Let's Talk," an opinion piece published in March in the Arizona Republic. The two have frequently commented on same-sex marriage cases. Phillips is a Tucson attorney specializing in business and estate planning transactions and estate administration.

The "Death of DOMA" panel is free and open to the public. Seating is first-come, first-served. Up to 1.25 hours of CLE credit are available for UA students. The program is being cosponsored by the UA Institute for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies.

Join the Christopher Walken Club

Walken in His Shoes reading

7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 23

Temple of Music & Art's Cabaret Theatre330 S. Scott Ave


Local writer Ruben Rosthenhaufler has a thing for Christopher Walken. He says it started about seven years ago when he started working with Arizona Rose Theatre Company. "The crew started impersonating Christopher Walken—his voice, his speech pattern. Walken actually erases the punctuation in his scripts and pauses when he wants. So, I got the idea of a Christopher Walken club," Rosthenhaufler said. Walken in His Shoes follows the members of this fictional club, the debate that ensues when a woman wants to join in, and the challenges of spreading the Walken love. There will be video clips shown throughout the reading, including footage of actual Tucsonans reacting to the idea of erecting a Christopher Walken statue next to the bronze Pancho Villa at Veinte de Agosto Park. Rosthenhaufler and others involved with the play went down Fourth Avenue asking people "Tell me why Christopher Walken is the greatest actor that ever lived?" In the second act, the members of the Walken Club move on to the first annual Christopher Walken "beauty" pageant. They'll compete in a talent show ("These Boots Were Made for Walken") and a hair length test (hair should be exactly one inch from the scalp). And, as with any quality reality show, the contestants will each give a testimonial and tell the story of how Christopher Walken changed their life.Spoiler Alert: Jesus isn't the only one who spontaneously shows up on food. Tickets are $5. The performance is a reading of the play, but Rosthenhaufler insists it won't be "just five people sitting around," especially when it comes to the beauty pageant.

Happy Birthday, Krishna

Krishna Fest

7 p.m. to midnight, Wednesday, Aug. 28

Govinda's Natural Foods & Cultural Center711 E. Blacklidge Drive


Wrap the gifts, get ready to stay up until midnight and prepare to do some chanting: Krishna's birthday is here, and Govinda's Natural Foods and Cultural Center is ready to celebrate.

In Hinduism, Krishna is the eighth avatar, or incarnation, of the supreme god Vishnu, and one of the most popular Hindu gods. Govinda's website offers a brief history of Krishna and Janmashtami, which could be called Krishna's birthday.

The website explains that, according to Hindu beliefs, Krishna's birth wasn't like everyone else's. "Krishna's 'birth' is a transcendental drama staged by the Lord Himself. In this drama, the Lord allows certain exalted devotees to play the roles of His father and mother, and others appear as His friends and other associates," the event description says.

But Sharon Cooksey of Govinda's emphasizes that this celebration is for everyone—Hinduism is not required. "We're inviting everyone to get a taste of something that's not mundane," Cooksey said. "It's a celebration of life and beauty.

"Everyone in the material world is fighting over something," Cooksey said. "It's so nice to bring everyone together."

The evening's events include Indian dance performances, live music, Cirque Roots Fire Acrobats, vegetarian cooking demonstrations and a children's activity village.

The celebration will also include Abhisek, a sacred bathing ceremony that includes covering statues of deities in yogurt and butter. At 11 p.m., the Arati ceremony honoring Krishna will begin, followed by a free vegetarian feast and birthday cake.

The Tucson celebration is annual, although Cooksey notes that it follows the lunar calendar and the date changes from year to year. The celebration is free and open to everyone.

50 Ways to Say 'Spicy'

Salsa and Tequila Challenge

5:30 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 24

La Encantada Shopping Center, northwest corner of Skyline Drive and Campbell Avenue


Tucson is getting a big taste of Hispanic culture in a most delicious way. The Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance and the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona are hosting their third annual Salsa and Tequila Challenge fundraiser.

More than 50 chefs and restaurants will prepare their salsa recipes, and mixologists will provide unique tequila-based drinks and sweet-and-savory menu pairings.

Participants include Iron Chef Tucson winner Ryan Clark of Lodge on the Desert; the 2012 Taco Festival winner, chef John Hohn of Loews Ventana Canyon Resort; and last year's Salsa and Tequila Challenge People's Choice winner, chef Tim Stevens of Fini's Landing.

Ballet Folklorico La Paloma, a local dance group that performed at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, will take the stage at 6 p.m., followed at 7:15 p.m. by Tesoro, a local flamenco group.

This year, the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation has decided to add a fundraiser to the celebration. Attendees can purchase raffle tickets and use them to vote for their favorite piñatas, all of which were made by local artists. All raffle proceeds will go toward helping Hispanic students who are pursuing higher education.

Tickets are $40 in advance and $45 at the door. They cover chips, salsa tastings, tequila cocktail sampling and shooters, menu pairings, silent auction participation and entertainment. All proceeds benefit the Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance and the Community Food Bank.

About The Author

Chelo Grubb

Bookworm, cat lady, journalism enthusiast.
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