This week you can spot storms, test your kids, listen to high school bands, celebrate bicycles, get the feminine perspective on outdoor adventures, see classic cars and then see more classic cars.
This column includes activities and programs in the Greater Phoenix area that have free admission. If you are looking for fundraisers, seminars, workshops, and other community programs that have an admission charge, or where donations are expected, I have a separate column for those. I call them "Phoenix Area Programs, Fundraisers & Events" and you can find those listings in my blog. They tend to cover a wider range of dates than a week, because advance registration is often required. For a long list of programs and festivals that are annual events in Greater Phoenix check the calendar.
What: National Weather Service Storm Spotter Class
When: Thursday, April 19, 2012 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: Avondale Fire Station 172, 1825 N. 107th Ave.
Avondale Emergency Management Office and the National Weather Service will teach people how to spot severe weather conditions. Participants will learn how to report the information to the National Weather Service or local officials. Course completion certificates will be issued to each program participant, and will allow for them to also become official Storm Spotter volunteers.
What: Free Drug Testing Kits
When: Thursday, April 19, 2012 from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Rural/Metro Southwest Ambulance Headquarters, 708 W. Baseline Road, Mesa
Get information on teen drug prevention. Free home drug testing kits for in advance of April 20 (420/National Get High Day). Thousands of kids experiment with a variety of addictive substances every day and notMYkid wants to inform parents on the risks and warning signs. The average age for experimentation is 13 and it typically takes two years for parents to realize their kids are using drugs. The preventative benefit of home test kits is that it gives kids an excuse to say "no" to peer pressure. You can also pick up the test kits at 5230 E. Shea Blvd., Suite 100, Scottsdale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
What: Music Under the Stars
When: Friday, April 20, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Tempe Center for the Arts
Concert bands from Corona del Sol and Desert Vista high schools and the Coronal del Sol steel drum ensemble along with the Arizona Wind Symphony (adult community band) and The Academy Drum and Bugle corps. Pre-concert entertainment by the Corona del Sol steel drum band begins at 7:15 p.m. General parking will be in the US Airways garage near the intersection of Ash Avenue and Rio Salado Parkway. Enter from Ash Avenue beginning at 6 p.m.; this will be the only available entrance. There are about 1700 parking spaces in the garage. It takes about five minutes to walk from the garage to the concert site. Accessible parking (accessible plate or hanger required) will be in the TCA parking lot. Golf cart shuttles will run beginning at 6 p.m. and end approximately 30 minutes after the concert. Pick-up points are at the Tempe Beach Park parking lot on Ash Avenue, TCA east walkway and near the main entrance of TCA.
What: Pedal Craft Phoenix
When: Friday, April 20, 2012 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: Kitchen Sink Studios, 828 N. 3rd Street, Phoenix
The inaugural Pedal Craft event rides into downtown Phoenix bringing together bicycles, art, and community to celebrate the city's growing urban bike scene. The one night event will feature hundreds of bicyclists, a bicycle-themed poster show, a display of unique bicycle racks, and a ride to selected local restaurants and bars.
What: Ladies' Day Out
When: Saturday, April 21, 2012 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Cabela's, Glendale
The day-long event features hands-on seminars, product experts, giveaways, discounts, sweepstakes and more. The first 100 women at each retail store receive a commemorative t-shirt. Classes ranging from Handguns and Heels An Introduction to Personal Firearms to How to Carry Concealed Discreetly. For those looking to expand their knowledge in other areas, seminars will include Dutch Oven Desserts to Blackened, Breaded or Fried, An Introduction to Serving Fish to Your Family. Product specialists and industry experts will be on hand to answer questions and make recommendations while offering suggestions to help make the ladies' next outdoor adventure a success. All ladies in attendance will be eligible to enter a drawing for a $500 Cabela's gift card.
What: Goodyear's "Rods & Rails" Classic Car and Train Show
When: Saturday, April 21, 2012 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Goodyear Ballpark
Donations accepted with proceeds to benefit the restoration of Goodyear's Historic Litchfield Train Depot. More than 100 classic and historic cars will be on display. There will also be model train displays. Local High School jazz groups will provide live entertainment. 50/50 drawing, vendors.
What: Cruise In at Catch
When: Sunday, April 22, 2012 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Where: Catch 22 Sports Grill 18725 N. 32nd Street Phoenix
A Cruise-In featuring specialty and classic cars, with a DJ/Band, drink and food specials, family games, vendors and hourly give-aways each day. Admission and parking are free.
If you've arrived at this page and find that the event dates have past, check my recent blog entries for more Free Things -- I write about free things to do in Greater Phoenix several times per month. Also, check that same blog list for another column on upcoming fundraisers, walks, runs, seminars, workshops and programs that might interest you. It's called Phoenix Area Programs and Events For Daily Living.
If you know about a free event that's open to the public that you'd like me to consider for this weekly column, complete and submit this form at least 8 days prior to the event and I'll consider it.
All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.