Cheap Thrills SPIFFY: Keeping this old town spic-and-span is no easy chore. In fact, the dirty work of civic housekeeping often falls to countless volunteers, who assist in everything from planting trees to simply picking up garbage, all under the Tucson Clean and Beautiful program.

Those devoted souls get a bit of overdue recognition on Saturday, June 28, with The Tucson Tonight Show, a comedy and awards extravaganza. The gala will feature a host of local luminaries and performers, including the Desert Sons, the Tucson Boys Chorus Alumni and banjo player Eric Souders. And rumor has it that City Councilwomen Janet Marcus, Molly McKasson and Shirley Scott will even combine musical forces for a short number.

Free event is 7 p.m. in the Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. Call 791-3109 for details.

BIG PICTURE: The Dinnerware Contemporary Art Gallery sheds light on a smattering of Tucson's best creative talents with its Member-Artists Group Exhibition.

Works by 14 artists will be on display. They range from the satirical, figurative sculpture of Gary Benna, and the human figures, dreams and stories portrayed in oil by Michael Chittock, to Gary Swimmer's bright, off-balance abstract paintings.

Exhibit runs through July 5, with an opening reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 28, in the Dinnerware Gallery, 135 E. Congress St. Regular gallery hours are noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and noon to 7 p.m. Thursday. For information, call 792-4503.

PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE: It's the biggest testimonial to xenophobia this country has seen in decades. If California's Prop. 187 survives court challenges, it would severely limit that state's social service obligations to illegal aliens and their children. At the same time, neighboring jurisdictions like Arizona are threatening to follow suit.

Fanned and exploited by cynical election-year politicians, the anti-immigrant wave seems to have crested; recent polls show such angry, scapegoating sentiments subsiding. But Prop. 187 is still tentatively on the books. And behind the hyperbole are the endless vexing questions it raises, and the human lives affected.

Will Border Patrol agents become hall monitors in California public schools? Will pregnant mothers come to term without any prior medical attention? And what kind of future will their children--unattended by doctors and uneducated by the system--come to expect?

PBS's award-winning Point of View series, featuring the works of independent filmmakers, tackles the mean-spirited issue in Fear and Learning at Hoover Elementary.

Fourth-grade teacher turned documentary filmmaker Laura Simón ponders the law's personal ramifications when she takes the camera inside her L.A. classroom, where students, parents and other instructors grapple with the issue.

U.S. News and World Report says Simón's piece "offers neither palliatives nor comfortable conclusions"; and in 1997 the gritty work was given a Sundance Freedom of Expression Award.

Fear and Learning airs at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 1, on KUAT Channel 6. TW

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