This week you can hear about architecture, assess your attention span, meet a jolly old woman, remember Pearl Harbor, see double, meet presidents, be a hobbit, and get ready to ride.
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.
The holidays have arrived, and activities for the next month are often holiday-related. Many of them are free to attend; you can find those in the Big Holiday Festival List here.
What: Lecture Series: Historic Phoenix Architecture & Landmarks
When: Thursday, December 6, 2012 - CANCELED
Where: Burton Barr Central Library, Pulliam Auditorium, Phoenix
The City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture lecture series, "Art Works, Culture Connects," highlights Phoenix's historic architecture and landmarks. The talks accompany the opening of "Phoenix Icons: The Art of our Historic Landmarks," at the Gallery @ City Hall. Today's lecture: Philip VanderMeer, ASU Professor of History on Rise, Fall and Rise of Downtown Phoenix.
What: Do You Have Adult Attention Deficit Disorder?
When: Thursday, December 6, 2012 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Center for Attention Deficit and Learning Disorders, 10229 N. 92nd St., Suite 101, Scottsdale
Do you have trouble concentrating and are concerned you're an adult with Attention Deficit Disorder? Learn about adult attention deficit disorder, how it is diagnosed and what treatment options are available to help manage the condition. Free parking. Registration required.
What: Mrs. Santa Claus
When: Friday, December 7, 2012 at 10:30 a.m.
Where: Goodyear Justice Center, 185 N 145th Ave, Goodyear
Mrs. Claus will share her special style of storytelling, magic and songs. She is the cutest (and funniest) 500 year old lady you'll ever meet. Sponsored by the New Friends of the Goodyear Branch Library.
What: Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
When: Friday, December 7, 2012
Where: Wesley Bolin Plaza, Phoenix
A Color Guard from the U.S. Marine Corps and the Payson High School Marching Band will lead a procession of students and members of the public in a walk, organized by the City of Phoenix, from the Phoenix City Hall to the USS Arizona Anchor Memorial in Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza, Arizona State Capitol, where the events will take place. The first event will commence at 10:55 (Time of attack on Oahu, Territory of Hawaii on December 7, 1941). There will be a groundbreaking ceremony for the World War II Memorial to be built near the anchor next year. At about 12:15 pm, Rear Admiral Horn will meet with students and other interested persons in the Historic Senate Chamber of the Arizona Capitol Museum.
What: Movie in the Park - Double Feature
When: Friday, December 7, 2012 at 6 p.m.
Where: Civic Space Park, 424 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix
The evening will begin with Polar Express, a children's tale about traveling by magical train to the North Pole. Hot chocolate and cookies will be served during this screening and Santa will visit with children handing out holiday bells. Following Polar Express is a showing of Christmas Vacation at 8 p.m. This PG-13 comedy is a classic tale of family reunions and Christmas blunders. Children are encouraged to wear pajamas and attendees should bring blankets and chairs.
What: "Rock the Presidents" - Childsplay Theatre
When: Friday, December 7, 2012 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Foothills Library, 19055 N 57th Avenue, Glendale
Theatre troupe, Childsplay, presents "Rock the Presidents" for grades 2-12. You too can become President. A high-octane, multimedia-filled, musical revue spanning 223 years of the American presidency, from President George Washington to President Barack Obama. The 44 men who rose to the highest office in the land are brought to life through all-new rock, pop and folk music. Audience members of all ages are welcome. No registration necessary.
What: Hobbit Day
When: Saturday, December 8, 2012 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Chandler Sunset Library, 4930 W. Ray Road, Chandler
Participants and will enjoy a "Dress like a Hobbit" costume contest, test their Hobbit knowledge in a trivia contest, and play Hobbit games. The Urban Lemmings, an improvisational group from Hamilton High School will act out scenes from the book, and sandwiches and afternoon tea will be served. There will also be a scavenger hunt and a sword fighting demonstration. Hobbit Day participants will eat sandwiches provided by the Cousin's Subs. Advance registration is required through the library website.
What: Ready To Ride Class
When: Saturday, December 8, 2012 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Tempe Transportation Center, 200 E 5th Street., Tempe
Do you know a beginner bicyclist age 16 and up who is fearful of riding on the road? Or could use some basic bicycle safety instruction - from bicycle fit to riding in traffic? Ready-to-Ride is a free class brought to you by the Coalition of Arizona Bicyclists and the Maricopa Association of Governments. The class for ages 16 provide an overview on the basics of bicycling and riding on streets in traffic. The last 45 minutes of the class will be on your bike in the parking lot. Helmets are required. Please note: this activity is not sponsored by the City of Tempe or the Tempe Transportation Center.
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.
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.