In this issue: Ronald McDonald House walk, Down Syndrome holiday party, Seussical Jr., fitness classes, making mole, holiday nature, big band concert, veterans and their pets fundraiser and make a journal like Taylor Swift's.
Aside from these activities, you'll find holiday performances all over town. Check the big Christmas Concert and Shows list.
This column includes announcements of seminars, workshops, community events, fundraisers and other programs for which there is an admission charge, a donation expected or you are otherwise expected to spend money, such as shopping events. Advance registration is required at some these events, so you might see them listed here weeks before they are scheduled to occur.
If you are looking for programs or activities where there is no charge for admission, you can check my weekly "Free Things To Do" column (it comes out every Monday), or check the monthly calendar of recurring annual events.
Events are presented here in date order.
What: Amazing Raise
When: Saturday, December 1, 2012. Registration and breakfast at 7:30 a.m., walk at 8:30
The 1st annual Amazing Raise will take families and friends of the Ronald McDonald House on a walk between the two Valley Houses, at 501 E. Roanoke and on the campus of Phoenix Children's Hospital, 1980 E. Cambridge. Round-trip walkers will cover 3.8 miles; walkers going one way will walk 1.9 miles. Funds raised will ensure that no family is ever turned away for not being able to afford the $15 nightly fee. The average cost of caring for one family for one day is $59. In 2011, 80% of the 1,576 families from 23 states and 11 foreign countries were unable to make the donation. Water, sunscreen, refreshments and entertainment will be provided along the route. Register for $15 online. Participants can walk as individuals, join a team or start their own and are asked to raise a minimum of $59 either through personal donations or pledges. Anyone raising $59 will receive a t-shirt.
What: Breakfast with Santa Holiday Party
When: Saturday, December 1, 2012 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Where: Rockin' R Ranch, 6136 E. Baseline Road, Mesa
Sharing Down Syndrome Arizona - East Chapter offers a continental breakfast (there is a charge for breakfast), dancing and music with DJ Ron, crafts and holiday fun. Bring your cameras and party with the cutest kids ever!
What: Desert Stages Theatre Presents 'Seussical Jr.'
When: Now through Sunday, December 16, 2012
Where: Desert Stages Theatre, 4720 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale
Charging the Children's Theatre with cheerful song and a magical tale, Desert Stages Theatre presents America's most beloved childhood characters in the inspiring journey of Seussical Jr. This musical extravaganza features an array of Dr. Seuss' adored storybook stars including, Horton the Elephant, The Cat in the Hat, Gertrude McFuzz, lazy Mayzie and a little boy with a big imagination - Jojo. The delightful group unites under one roof, conquering challenges and discovering the power of loyalty and friendship as they transport the audience from the Jungle of Nool to the Circus McGurkus to the invisible world of the Whos. Tickets ar $15 online or by phone to 480.483.1664, and at the theatre box office.
What: Orangetheory Fitness Grand Opening
When: Friday, Saturday and Sunday, November 30, December 1 & 2, 2012
Where: Orangetheory Fitness Arcadia, 5109 N. 44th Street, D401, Phoenix
The Sneak Peek event will unveil Orangetheory Fitness Arcadia location's new workout center, which will feature progressive and essential workout equipment that torches through 900 calories in one hour. At the event, attendees can try out Orangetheory's unique cardio and strength interval training for free and receive discounted membership rates. There will also be food and beverages and local Arcadia business's providing samples and giveaways to all event attendees. The official grand opening of the Arcadia location is on Thursday, December 13, 2012. Friday - 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Happy Hour, class demonstrations; Saturday - 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Free class sessions for all attendees and premiere vendors providing product samples and giveaways; Sunday - 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
What: The Art of Hand Ground Mole
When: Saturday, December 1, 2012 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix
Learn to make Mexican sauces from scratch with Amy Valdes Schwemm of Mano Y Metate. You will toast chilies, whole spices and other fresh ingredients over a comal or griddle, grind them on a metate or molcajete, and simmer them into flavorful mole poblano. Mole does not always have chocolate, but it does have many other secrets. We will taste the diversity of moles from Mano Y Metate, including mole dulce, pipian rojo, mole verde and adobo. Traditional and vegetarian options, such as heirloom bean and posole cakes, are available and will be enjoyed by all. Advance registration required online or call 480-481-8146. Members: $60 / General Public: $75. Garden admission included.
What: Gifts from Nature
When: Saturday and Sunday, December 1 & 2, 2012
Where: Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, Phoenix
Unique nature-inspired arts and crafts by Arizona artists, including jewelry, wearable art, ceramics, home décor, garden enhancements, and unexpected discoveries. Audubon benefits from sales, so you can help the environment while you do your holiday shopping. 30 local artists, children's activities, live music, and bites available for purchase from local food truck vendors. Free admisssion.
What: ASU Concert: Big Band
When: Monday, December 3, 2012. 6:30 p.m talk, 7:30 p.m. concert
Where: Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts
ASU Concert Jazz Band, Michael Kocour, Director. Tickets are $10 each, free for all students with a current I.D.
What: Bark and Brew
When: Saturday, December 8, 2012 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Where: Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery, 7077 E. Bell Rd, Scottsdale
Valley Dogs Rescue and its Veteran support group Veterans and Their Pets will host the first annual Bark and Brew. In Phoenix there are over 300 homeless Veterans with animals that are not allowed into the VA system due to their pets. Veterans and Their Pets ensures that the Veterans animal is medically cared for (shots, spay/neuter, microchip) as well as housed while the Veteran seeks the medical treatment needed. 100% of the proceeds of this event go to the dogs or to support Veterans in need. This event will feature live music by Acoustic Desert, raffle items and auction items. Food and beer will be provided by the Tilted Kilt. There will be vendors offering fun products, animal support and fun items to try and buy. Well behaved dogs, beer lovers and those concerned with Veteran support and Animal Rescue in Phoenix should attend. $30 in advance or $35 at the door includes hors d'oeuvres and beer.
What: Taylor Swift Christmas Songbook/Journal Workshop
When: Thursday, December 13, 2012 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Musical Instrument Museum, Phoenix
Make a special songbook/journal to record this magical season. Taylor Swift loves Christmas (it's her favorite holiday!) and she loves to spend time journaling, too. Be inspired by her and create your own Christmas songbook. MIM will provide a selection of Christmas tunes (including some of Taylor's favorites) and all the supplies to make the cover as sparkly as the season. The songbook will include journal pages so you can personalize the holiday. Best for ages 10-adult. Space is limited; please make a reservation for a 30-minute time frame by calling 480.245.6919. Free with museum admission.
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If you've arrived at this page and find that the event dates have past, check my recent blog entries for more fundraisers, seminars and programs happening around town.
If you have an program or event that is open to the public that you'd like me to consider for this column, complete this form and submit it to me at least 8 days prior to the event (or registration deadline, if applicable).
All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.