THE AERONAUTS Immersive Fan Experience Comes to Phoenix Nov. 30

Valley residents are invited to join Amazon Prime Video Saturday, Nov. 30, for The Aeronauts’ Incredible Journey.

Prime Video is bringing its immersive fan experience inspired by The Aeronauts film, starring Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones, to Phoenix’s Steele Indian School Park from noon to 8pm Nov. 30. Families, schemers, dreamers and altitude enthusiasts of all ages will be thrilled by a sprawling Victorian fair, period performers and bites and a replica of the “Mammoth” balloon (as featured in the film). Guests will also enjoy a screening of the film at 5:30pm on the world’s first Fly-In Theatre: a breathtaking 20-foot LED screen wrapped 360 degrees around a second hot air balloon.

Steele Indian School Park is located at 300 East Indian School Road in Phoenix. Additional event details can be found at


Russo and Steele Announces New Venue Location for 20th Anniversary Event

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auctions will return home to Scottsdale at the epicenter of Arizona Car Week. Located just south of the North 101 Freeway and Scottsdale Road, the site will offer an array of dramatic improvements, including high profile visibility, easy access with ample parking, significantly larger display area and improved weather contingency, all strategically located in the northeast sector of the Valley.

“We are at the picture-perfect location for everything that has to do with Arizona Car Week,” said Drew Alcazar, auction president and CEO. “Our team has put together an incredible layout that gives sellers and buyers the best platform to experience an unforgettable year.”

The location also continues a long-standing partnership between Russo and Steele, the City of Scottsdale and the Arizona State Land Department.

“Our partnerships are important to us,” said Alcazar. “We are local and family-owned. Arizona is where Josephine and I have raised our family. Coming home to Scottsdale for our 20th Anniversary just feels right.”

Running Jan. 15–19, the dramatically larger site offers unsurpassed visibility from the main freeway servicing all of North Scottsdale. Further enhanced with easy access off the Scottsdale Road exit, acres of contiguous and close proximity parking will greet attendees along with valet parking directly at the main entrance. In addition, the centralized location in north Scottsdale assures easy access between all Arizona Car week events.

“I’ve never been more excited to have that microphone in my hand and feel the crowd’s energy from our unique ‘Auction In The Round’ format,” Alcazar said. “This will be our chance to say ‘thank you’ to the many close friends, clients, sponsors and vendors who have been rabidly loyal to Russo and Steele for two decades. We have been fortunate to enjoy an exciting journey these last 20 years, and we cannot be more enthusiastic to celebrate our important milestone this coming January in Scottsdale!”

For more information about Russo and Steele, visit

Midtown Celebrates Seventh Annual Urban Living Tour Nov. 2

The seventh Annual Midtown Urban Living Tour is coming to town Nov. 2 to showcase some of the city’s longest-standing residences. The self-guided tour will provide participants with exclusive access to explore unique buildings across Midtown Phoenix. Included in the list of stops are the award-winning Artisan Lofts on Central, the historic Villa Del Coronado, Tapestry, 1 Lexington, Beadle View and Chateau de Ville, built-in classic New Orleans style.

By offering a glimpse into Central Phoenix’s most unique high-rise condominiums and more, The Midtown Neighborhood Association hopes that more residents and tourists will view the district as a prime place to live alongside incredible cultural centers and businesses.

“The Midtown Urban Living Tour allows thousands of attendees to see what urban living in Phoenix truly is about.” said Susan Thompson, president of Midtown Neighborhood Association. “One of the few dense areas in Phoenix that is surrounded by historic neighborhoods, impeccable restaurants and outstanding community, we are so excited to show off what makes this neighborhood truly special.”

Free trolleys will run from 11am to 5pm to give tour-goers easy access to each of the buildings. All day tickets are $20/ day. Tickets are available online at

Each building is within walking distance of a light rail station. The Midtown Neighborhood Association also encourages participants to use Grid Bike Share and ride-share apps like Lyft and Uber.

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT: Around Town — November 2019

A lot of excellent music and theater performances will be gracing Valley stages both big and small in November here are just a few of them. —CST

Photo: Tim Trumble

Nov. 1–24

Chato’s Kitchen
Childsplay; 480.921.5700

Photo: Axel Dupeux

Nov. 2

Patti LuPone
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts; 480.499.8587

Nov. 5

Penny and Sparrow
Musical Instrument Museum; 480.478.6000

Nov. 6

David Cook
Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 8

Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 8

Vanessa Williams
Arizona Musicfest Festival; 480.422.8449

Nov. 8–10

Fellow Travelers
Arizona Opera; 602.266.7464

Nov. 9

A Tuba to Cuba: Preservation Hall Jazz Band with Yusa and Special Guests
Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 9

Jesse Cook 
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 11

The Van Buren

Nov. 13

The Van Buren

Nov. 13

Charles Lewis Quintet
ASU Kerr; 480.596.2660

Nov. 13 – Dec. 29

The Sound of Music
The Phoenix Theatre Company; 602.254.2151

Nov. 14

Pedro Giraudo Tango Quartet
Arizona Musicfest Festival

Nov. 14

Portland Cello Project
Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 14 – Dec. 1

Silent Sky
Arizona Theatre Company; 602.256.6995

Nov. 15

The Four Italian Tenors
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 15

Musical Instrument Museum

Photo: Joan Marcus

Nov. 15–17

Blue Man Group
ASU Gammage; 480.965.3434

Nov. 16

Sara Evans
Arizona Musicfest Festival

Nov. 16

Carlene Carter
Mesa Arts Center; 480.644.6500

Nov. 16

The Black Keys
Talking Stick Resort Arena

Nov. 16

ERTH’s Prehistoric Aquarium Adventure
The Mystery of the Dinosaurs of the Deep
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 17

MIM and Arizona Musicfest Present the Young Musicians Fall Concert
Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 17

Live & Local: Sugar Thieves
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 19

Bruce Cockburn
Musical Instrument Museum

Gabby Moreno

Nov. 20

Roots Rising! Featuring Matt Andersen, Gaby Moreno and Liz Vice
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Photo: Joel Sartore

Nov. 20

National Geographic Live: Building the Photo Ark
Mesa Arts Center

Nov. 22

Over the Rhine
Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 22

Cedric Watson and The Bijou Creole Band
ASU Kerr

Nov. 22 – Dec. 15

The Trip to Bountiful
Theatre Artists Studio; 602.765.0120

Nov. 22 – Dec. 29

Elf the Musical
Arizona Broadway Theatre; 623.776.8400

Nov. 22

DIAVOLO | Architecture in Motion
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 22

Trevor Noah: Loud & Clear
Talking Stick Resort Arena

Nov. 23

Musical Instrument Museum

Nov. 23

Gila River Arena

Nov. 23 [Show rescheduled to FEB. 16]

Jane Lynch and Kate Flannery: Two Lost Souls
Featuring the Tony Guerrero Quartet
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 23

Lindsey Stirling
Comerica Theatre

Nov. 25

ASU Big Band Night 
Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Nov. 27

Musical Interludes Series: ASU Jazz Faculty Recital
Musical Instrument Museum

Dec. 3

The Jacob Jolliff Band
Musical Instrument Museum

Carefree Hosts Great Pumpkin Commonwealth Weigh-Off During Enchanted Pumpkin Garden Event

This weekend, Carefree’ s Enchanted Pumpkin Garden becomes even more exciting with the addition of an official Great Pumpkin Commonwealth weigh-off. Several of the best giant gourd growers in the Southwest are bringing their obscenely large, fascinating, ginormous orange orbs to town Saturday, Oct. 19, 11am, at the Community Stage outside of Historic Spanish Village, 7211 East Ho Road in Carefree. Admission for the weigh-off event is free and is open to the public.

This event is in partnership with the Arizona Giant Pumpkin Growers Association with prize money awarded to the heaviest pumpkins attending. Winning pumpkins will be turned into fantastic Halloween creations by master carver Ray Villafane and the carving team at Villafane Studios during the festival.

The Town of Carefree Fifth Annual Enchanted Pumpkin Garden is a one-of-a-kind fall festival celebrating the magic of the Halloween season. The 2019 event takes place Oct. 18–27, with the incredible artistry of Ray Villafane and Villafane Studios’ carvers on display live each day, and their carvings found throughout the four-acre Carefree Desert Gardens. On weekends, this annual event boasts magical Halloween activities for both kids and adults, plus culinary delights and autumnal refreshments including a beer garden, a harvest market and live music.

There is no cost to attend the Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off. Entry to the Gardens and Haunted Happenings attractions will require an event wristband at an additional charge. Admission to the Enchanted Pumpkin Garden is $15 Friday–Sunday; $10 Monday–Thursday. Children 2 and under enter for free. Free parking is available in and around the Gardens, and throughout the downtown area. For additional information, visit

Cover photo: Desert Hearts Photography-Tiffany Copeland

Kazimierz Wine and Whiskey Bar Hosts Esteban & Teresa Joy Nov. 2

Celebrated guitarist Esteban will perform an intimate music concert with his daughter and violinist Teresa Joy at 6pm, Saturday, Nov. 2, at Kazimierz Wine and Whiskey Bar, 7137 East Stetson Drive, in Scottsdale.

Attendees will be treated to classical Spanish fusion with a contemporary rock influence as well as newly composed songs. Grammy award-winning drummer Joe Morris and Raul Yanez, pianist and Arizona State University professor of music, will play alongside Esteban and Joy.

Tickets are limited and start at $75 per person. To purchase, visit

Critically acclaimed, Esteban has topped numerous billboard charts and toured throughout the country. Launching his career in Arizona, Esteban and Joy played in the mid-90s where they won “Best of Phoenix” for eight years. Renowned for their emotive performances, the duo is a favorite within the Arizona music scene.

For more information or to contact Kazimierz Wine and Whiskey Bar, call 480.946.3004 or visit

SMoCA Announces 24 Artists in Fall Exhibition

Ana Teresa Fernández, “Of Bodies and Borders 1 (performance documentation),” 2017, Oil on canvas, 54 x 94 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery Wendi Norris

Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA) will premiere its first large-scale group exhibition of performance art, “Counter-Landscapes: Performative Actions from the 1970s – Now,” accompanied by a catalog and collaborative components, Oct. 26 — Jan. 19.

In the history of the Museum, this is the first time its galleries will be dedicated to performance art, despite the increasing prevalence of performance in contemporary art. A fall opening celebration will be held at 7pm Friday, Oct. 25, with free admission for the public to preview the galleries with curators, artists and the community.

As a counter to the established ideas of land art, “Counter-Landscapes: Performative Actions from the 1970s – Now” presents leading artists working with performance who have brought about new ways of seeing and interacting with the environment. Through a focused selection of key historical and contemporary works, “Counter-Landscapes” illuminates how the strategies of women artists in the 1970s and 1980s are employed by artists today, especially those interested in issues of social, environmental and personal transformation. The works present a dialogue across generations, locations and genders, featuring photography, video, sculpture, performance and installation. The selection of artists — 24 total — includes early practitioners (1970s – 1980s), the next generation (1990s – 2000s) and new commissions (2019) by contemporary artists Maria Hupfield (Toronto, and a member of the Anishinaabe Nation at Wasauksing First Nation, Ontario) and Saskia Jordá (Phoenix, Arizona).

“‘Counter-Landscapes’ pairs important historical works — some on loan from the Tate in London — with new works, including four large-scale installations by contemporary artists, one performance commission and a series of public programs to deepen the understanding of the works on view,” said Jennifer McCabe, SMoCA’s director and chief curator.

The exhibition brings together the work of a pioneering generation of women artists who forged new ways of making art in the 1970s and 1980s — Agnes Denes, Rebecca Horn, Suzanne Lacy, Adrian Piper, Bonnie Ora Sherk, among others — with pieces by a younger cohort who have adopted and extended their strategies. These artists (both male and female), who rose to prominence in the 1990s and 2000s, create work that addresses social, environmental and personal transformation. “Counter-Landscapes” shows how, in the process of overcoming the extraordinary obstacles they faced as women, artists working in the landscape in the late 20th century developed inventive strategies that have profoundly influenced younger artists and changed the face of the art world.

“‘Counter-Landscapes’ tells a new story about how women artists were groundbreaking in the 1970s and ’80s and how relevant and timely the work remains,” McCabe continued.

Artists include: Marina Abramović, Allora & Calzadilla, Francis Alÿs, Eleanor Antin, Agnes Denes, Angela Ellsworth, VALIE EXPORT, Ana Teresa Fernández, Rebecca Horn, Maria Hupfield, Saskia Jordá, Leslie Labowitz, Suzanne Lacy, Ana Mendieta, Christian Philipp Müller, Adrian Piper, Pope.L, Lotty Rosenfeld, Bonnie Ora Sherk, Sarah Cameron Sunde, Beth Ames Swartz, Zhou Tao, Mierle Laderman Ukeles and Antonia Wright.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a self-published, four-color, approximately 150-page catalog, designed by Fernando Espinosa. The catalog reflects extensive research and new scholarship, with essays by McCabe and additional invited scholars, Dr. Natasha Boas and Dr. Jolene Rickard. “Counter-Landscapes: Performative Actions from the 1970s – Now” will be available In January 2020.

In anticipation of this multi-gallery exhibition, the galleries will be closed during installation. However, the Museum’s Shop@SMoCA and James Turrell Skyspace will be open 11am–5pm, Oct. 15 until Oct. 24. The Museum will reopen at 7pm Friday, Oct. 25, for the public during the fall opening celebration. Normal hours resume Saturday, Oct. 26.

For additional details about the exhibit, as well as related programming, visit Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art is located at 7374 East Second Street. For additional information, call 480.874.4666.

Artists League Auction Aims To Raise Awareness of Domestic Violence Issues — Support Local Organization

Artwork by Diane Brand

“Belted” 2019; Acrylic on wood panel by Christina M. Clark

October is Domestic Violence Awareness month, and as part of the Paint Phoenix Purple Campaign the Northeast Valley Artists League (NEVAL) will hold its Sixth Annual Silent Auction and Gallery Show. The auction begins Friday, Oct. 11, and ends Thursday, Oct. 17, at 5pm.

Guests are invited to visit the gallery show at Shadow Mountain Senior Center, 3546 East Sweetwater Avenue in North Phoenix, from noon to 4:30pm opening day for entertainment, refreshments, a guest speaker and demonstrations. Artists from the local art league have created and donated original works of art. All auction proceeds benefit the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence.

For additional information about the Northeast Valley Artists League, visit, or find them on Facebook and Instagram@northeastvalleyartistsleague).

Finding Messages of Hope Through Paintings & Prose — Thunderbird Artists Gallery Hosts Jeanne Bonine

Twenty-five years ago, Jeanne Bonine was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer and given just six to 12 months to live. She was in the process of moving to Arizona from Minnesota when she learned that she had to undergo surgery. On her 50th birthday she had a lumpectomy and days later, a mastectomy of her left breast. Things looked bleak and she thought her career as a watercolor artist was over…until she met Judi Combs, owner of Thunderbird Artists and current co-owner of Thunderbird Artists Gallery in downtown Carefree.

L-R: Judi Combs and Jeanne Bonine

The two close friends will celebrate Bonine’s 50-year career as a professional artist Thursday, Oct. 10, during a special show, “Healed through Art…Blessed with Time.” An artist reception will take place from 2pm to 7pm at Thunderbird Artists Gallery, 99 Easy Street, Suite 235, located near the intersection of Ho Hum and Easy Streets.

In an after-surgery consultation, Bonine was brought into a cold room and told to watch a video on a computer. “The video basically said I was going to die if I didn’t have a bone marrow procedure. I felt like I was being sold a used car,” she said.

Fortunately, she was able to get help through the Mayo Clinic and due to the size of the tumor, its fast growth and the number of lymph nodes infected, she began a lengthy regiment of chemotherapy in Minnesota followed by radiation at the Phoenix location.

She finished her last treatment of radiation just two weeks before her first Thunderbird Artists Carefree festival in January 1995.

“I was nervous because I had no hair, so I wore a big white hat,” she said. “I felt like I was home again, and the show helped me regain my confidence. I truly consider Judi as an angel by my side. She was instrumental in my ability to continue my career as an artist.”

Combs, a cancer survivor herself, said it’s been an honor to watch Bonine’s career flourish.

“Jeanne is a Romantic Realist, whose soft and lush floral paintings illuminate beauty and peace,” Combs said, adding that her distinctive style is captivating. “It’s easy to become enamored with her oversized watercolor and oil paintings, which depict everything from garden wonders and exotic birds to a single rose and a desert skyscape.”

Bonine said her art changed after her tough battle with breast cancer.

“At first, my watercolor paintings were ethereal and very soft. Titles became very important to me because I thought I had a message to tell people. But that wasn’t enough, and I started to write prose to accompany each painting,” she said.

As she continued to survive, her paintings became bigger, bolder and stronger.

“I felt compelled to show both strength and softness,” she said, adding that, for her, prayer and positivity helped her heal. “Through my paintings and prose, I try to offer hope to anyone facing darkness.”

During the Oct. 10 show, Bonine will exhibit new watercolor and oil paintings as well as hand-painted “Gifts of Hope,” which include rose-imaged ornaments, miniature rose paintings and her coffee table book, “Inspirations of Timeless Beauty.” This book includes her paintings, prose and inspirational life story.

For more information, call 480.688.4960 or visit

Arizona Taco Festival Returns for its 10-Year ‘Taco-versary’

The 10th Annual Arizona Taco Festival, sponsored by the City of Scottsdale, is celebrating a decade of tacos by offering more taco amusement and milestone munchies, including more than 50 taco teams dishing out creative $3 steak, pork, seafood, veggie and even vegan tacos, as they compete for $10,000 and bragging rights in this esteemed taco competition.

The festival will commence Oct. 12–13 at its new, larger WestWorld of Scottsdale location. The taco playground will expand and take over 300 acres, featuring the fan-favorites, plus a whole new line-up of entertainment during the two-day festival.

New festivities at the 10th Annual Arizona Taco Festival include:

  • Lucha Libre Arena and Lucha Bar: Wrestlers slam down under a structured tent, and bleacher seating with its own bar and band with a Tijuana meets Quentin Tarantino vibe.
  • Taco Society Culture Tent: Taco-centric fashion, art, photography, music and more to get into the full taco spirit, mind, body and soul, co-curated by local artist Gennaro Garcia.
  • Holy Hot Sauce: This expo tent will feature 100 hot sauces to sample, buy, and vote for the People’s Choice award. All hot sauces will be curated by Vic Clinco, the owner of the largest private collection of hot sauces in the world.
  • Day of the Dead Wedding: For one lucky couple who gets hitched on the main stage Day of the Dead style and then celebrates with their wedding party in a private cabana.
  • Tequila Expo: Guests will be able to sample from over 100 types of tequila and other agave-based spirits. Expo tickets are $20, and hours are from noon to 5pm.
  • Technicolored Instagrammable cooking demo hosted by AZFoodie

Returning festival favorites include a solid line-up of over 50 taco vendors including Arizona’s top taquerias, taco food trucks, and taco titans will bring the best of the best tacos for $3 each; the Main Taco Competition, where local chefs battle for the best taco titles as well as $10,000 in cash prizes, trophies and bragging rights; interactive photo booths and photo experiences; Hot Chili Pepper eating contest; Mucho Taco Eating contests where 10 strong stomached volunteers see how many tacos they can consume in a short amount of time; and the Ay! Chihuahua Beauty Pageant where over 20 chihuahuas in vibrant costumes strut their stuff with eccentric owners in tow.

The festival is open Saturday, Oct. 12, and Sunday, Oct. 13, from 11am to 7pm. One-day general admission will begin at $10 per ticket in honor of the 10th anniversary for the first 2,019 ticket buyers and increase to $15 per ticket. Military members will receive half off their ticket. The VIP Cantina will offer chef curated food, private bars, entertainment, private bathrooms, seating for $135 per day. Tickets are only sold online on and food and beverages cost extra. Arizona Taco Festival is a cashless event.

WestWorld of Scottsdale is located at 16601 North Pima Road, Scottsdale. For an up-to-date lineup of 10-year anniversary festivities, restaurants, spirits and entertainment, visit

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