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Z贸calo Tucson Urban Scene Magazine / december 2011 /

zó•ca•lo Mexican Spanish. 1. a public square or plaza, esp. in the center of a city. 2. a gathering place or the center of activity in a community. Zócalo Tucson Magazine is an independently published community magazine, showcasing Tucson’s urban arts and culture. EDITOR Jamie Manser PRODUCTION ARTISTS Troy Martin, David Olsen CONTRIBUTORS Marisa Bernal, Carli Brosseau, Sarah Burton, VK Embee, Emily Gindlesparger, Kelly Lewis, Jamie Manser, Troy Martin, Jared R. McKinley, Phoenix Michael, Matthew Nelson, David Olsen, Monica Surfaro Spigelman, Herb Stratford. ADVERTISING Marie Hancock PUBLISHER & CREATIVE DIRECTOR David Olsen

CONTACT US: P.O. Box 1171 Tucson, AZ 85702-1171 520.955.ZMAG (9624)

December 2011



ON THE COVER: Image © Kate Fredriksen

Zócalo Tucson Magazine is a proud member of All content copyright © 2011 by Media Zócalo, LLC. Reproduction of any material in this or any other issue is prohibited without written permission from the publisher and author. No person may, without prior written permission of the publisher, take more than one copy of each issue.

December 2011 | 3

Z from the editor

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Tucson is like any locale – comprised of various socio-economic and cultural striations. Downtown is definitively a microcosm with its mishmash of owners and renters, business people and artists, merchants, consumers and homeless. On any given 2nd Saturday, it is interesting to watch the proverbial changing of the guard, around 11 p.m., move from a genteel, familial confluence to a party, dance crowd. While the thump-thump late night Saturday scene isn’t my thing, I think it is important to downtown’s economy and diversity to embrace all walks of people, as long as they are peaceful. I’ve been renting a house in Armory Park since 2000 and have watched the ebb and flow of businesses and folks come and go. Over the last couple of years, downtown seems to have embraced a more refined culinary aesthetic. With the influx of restaurants comes requisite competition. A place like Grill and its Red Room, though admittedly on the other side of refined, was a staple. “Open Later Than You Think” was a calling card for hungry partiers, wanting to sober up on greasy food, water and coffee after bars closed. I have fond memories of post bar crowds at Grill and fond memories of Red Room shows. The Sunday night before it closed on November 22, I ended up at Red Room hanging out with old friends I hadn’t seen in a long time, and moshing with strangers at 2 a.m. When I fell down, a bunch of strangers graciously, happily helped me up. I was a bit flushed with embarrassment but more delighted by the consideration of Tucsonans I had never met. I wondered if I would ever experience the opposite of stage diving in such a supportive environment. The point being that, in this super uncertain economy, Tucson’s best mainstays may be at the brink of collapse without its biggest fans hearing a whisper before it is too late. Hence, if you can, support your favorite, locally-owned places with our shopping guide (pages 23 to 30), scribed by Monica Surfaro Spigelman. This issue is also rife with the Old Pueblo’s December festivities, from Holiday Happenings (pages 9 & 10) to performances (page 16). These events showcase our international community and make me proud to live in this little-big town. – Jamie Manser

Tidbits Student Housing On Sixth Street Notice that large structure being built just west of Fourth Avenue on Sixth Street? Come August, that will be “The District” and it will house up to 756 students from the University of Arizona and Pima Community College, primarily, within 206 units, according to staff of The District. The apartments will be either two or three bedroom, and range in price from $615 to $710 per room. As no single units are available, The District will offer a roommate-matching service. Though the apartments are marketed to students, non-students will also be eligible tenants. Features of The District will include an outdoor theatre that will be located next to the pool and Jacuzzi. Construction should be completed by the end of January, with tenants moving in mid-August 2012. Visit for details. —Kelly Lewis

Do Even More Blue! If you are like us, you might be wondering what to do with plastic lawn furniture that cracks and breaks from the hot summer days. It turns out



that the city’s Environmental Services department is happy to take ‘em off your hands and lawns, as long as you can fit the plastic furniture in the blue recycling barrels with the lid closed. Other rigid plastics newly added to the program include: buckets, milk crates, laundry baskets, pet carriers (no metal), coolers/ice chests, flower pots (rinsed and clean), dish drainers/racks, wastebaskets, water bottles (5-gallon size). Visit ESD, and click on the recycling link on the left bar for all the details. The website also has the city’s holiday pick up schedules.

Commemorating Locomotive History Thousands of people welcomed historic steam engine No. 844 to Tucson’s Toole Avenue train station on the morning of Nov. 12. The enormous crowd came to see the engine that was built in 1944 for the Union Pacific Company as well as to experience the romantic era of locomotive steam power. With a giant white billowy cloud of steam flowing from its stack, No. 844 pulled into the station right on schedule at 8:20 a.m. Riding in one of the train’s passenger cars was Tucson Mayor Bob Walkup along with Ken Karrels, event chairman and the Chairman of Southern Arizona Transportation

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New Year’s Eve Festivities by Kelly Lewis Whether you’re looking for a five-course gourmet meal, an all-out dance party, or just some place to sip a cocktail while bopping around to REM’s “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine),” Tucson has you covered. Here’s a sampling of local events to ring in the New Year. Cheers!

Arizona Inn Celebrate with food, champagne and musicians from the Tucson Symphony Orchestra. The “Moveable Musical Feasts” event features a five-course gourmet dinner with music by TSO symphonists and SwingN’ the New jazz ensemble. Tickets are $199 per person, all inclusive, and the evening begins at 5:30 p.m. 2200 E. Elm St. Reserve your ticket by visiting

Club Congress Congress celebrates the end of 2011 with an Aztec Apocalypse theme. Witness an Aztec warrior throwing a virgin into the fire at midnight! Live music comes courtesy of 80s and Gentlemen, drumming from Odaiko Sonora, and dancing in the club. $100 VIP tickets include open bar and food. $20 advance, $25 day of show. 21+. 311 E. Congress St. Info at

JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa The Tucson Jazz Society hosts its 6th Annual New Year’s Eve Spectacular at Starr Pass with Euge Groove and Jonathan Butler, starting at 7:15 p.m. Tickets include dinner, dancing and a

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photo from


Jonathan Butler performs at JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa for Tucson Jazz Society’s New Year’s Eve celebrations.

midnight toast. Tickets range from $199-$259. 3800 W. Starr Pass Blvd. For tickets, visit

La Cocina at Old Town Artisans Get your dance on at La Cocina, with DJ Ektratek, DJ B-Rad and DJ Herm spinning all night long in both the cantina and the lounge. Watch the ball drop at midnight with a champagne and Miller High Life toast. $15 in advance, $20 day of, doors at 8 p.m. 21+. 201 N. Court Ave. Find out more at

Rialto Theatre The Rialto Theatre plans to help you Mambo your way into 2012 with Sergio Mendoza y La Orkestra’s Viva Mexico New Year. $20 advance, $25 day of the show, $40 VIP reserved seating. 18+, doors at 7 p.m. 318 E. Congress St. Details at

Westward Look Resort For dinner and dancing, head to Westward Look, where their restaurant Gold shall offer a three-course, prix-fixe menu and dancing in the Sonoran Ballroom to live music by East to West for $85. If you’re just there to dance, cover is $25. 245 E. Ina Rd. Visit for details.

New Year’s Eve—Eve If New Year’s Eve crowds aren’t your thing, why not celebrate a wee bit early? With events happening on New Year’s Eve—Eve, December 30, there’s still chances for you to celebrate without dealing with the hoopla and madness that

comes as the clock ticks down. The Meat Puppets at Club Congress Doors open at 8 p.m.; tickets are $13 advance or $15 day of the show. 21+. KXCI will roast and toast four long-time deejays in a fundraising event at the Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave., starting at 7 p.m. Milo Solujic, host of The Bluegrass Show, Carol “Ruby” Anderson, host of Ruby’s Roadhouse, Kidd Squidd, host of Kidd Squidd’s Mystery Jukebox and Marty Kool, host of The Blues Review, will all be in the hot seat, held in the tradition of the Dean Martin celebrity toasts of the 70s and 80s. The night includes live music from local talent recommended by the roastees, including: Stefan George and Tom Walbank, Way Out West, Los Hombres, and an a capella set from The Titan Valley Warheads. Advance tickets are $8 for KXCI members and $10 for the general public. Reserve your ticket or get more information at The following businesses didn’t have information available as of press time, but they assured us they’ll definitely be hosting events to bring in the New Year. Mr. Head’s Art Gallery & Bar, 513 N. 4th Ave. 792-2710 Westin La Paloma, 3800 E. Sunrise Dr. 7426000 or visit Sky Bar, 536 N. 4th Ave. 622-4300, Zen Rock, 121 E. Congress St. 306-8116, Sapphire, 61 E. Congress St. 306-8116, n

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continued from page 5 photo coutesy Ken Karrels

Thousands of people welcomed historic steam engine No. 844 to Tucson’s Toole Avenue train station on the morning of Nov. 12.

Museum, and Fletcher McCusker, Chairman of Providence Service Corporation (whose grandfather was an engineer). At the depot to greet them was incoming Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, among others. The 4th Calvary Band and displays of antique cars entertained the crowd prior to the train’s arrival. After No. 844 pulled into the station, a short skit honoring the upcoming centennial of Arizona statehood was presented and then the Tanque Verde singers performed a medley of rousing songs under the direction of Jodi Darling. For the one-hour the locomotive was at the station, people were able to get a close up view of the giant engine. A few lucky ones even got to get a peak in the cab and talk to the train’s crewmembers. With a final blast of the whistle, No. 844 pulled out of the depot around 9:15 a.m. heading north. As it left, thousands of pictures were taken to remember both the steam era as well as the day that time in history returned to Tucson. “This depot has played a vital role in Tucson’s history for the past 131 years and it appears it will continue to be the heart of the city,” said Ken Karrels. —David Devine

Downtown Parade of Lights

Ho-Ho-Ho Holiday Happenings by Phoenix Michael

Regarding all things Christmas-y, opinions abound. While some eagerly await the season’s noteworthy dates, others find the inevitable family get-togethers stressful. Among Tucsonans, however, enthusiasm for affordable, interactive events is overwhelming. This month’s festivities will make the grumpiest Grinch grin. Mark your calendar! At urban oasis Tohono Chul Park, 7366 N. Paseo del Norte, a special Holiday Nights program runs Friday-Saturday, Dec. 2-3, from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Cowboy crooners Way Out West and classical guitarist Gabriel Alaya will provide live music; Frosty the Snowperson shall also be in attendance. “It is absolutely gorgeous,” says park representative Marcia Ring of the illuminated holiday trees and pathways. “There’s a little bit of something for everyone.” Call 742-6455 to purchase tickets or 797-1222 to make dinner reservations at the stellar Tohono Chul Tea Room. For more information, visit Similarly, the lovely Tucson Botanical Gardens hosts Luminaria Nights Friday-Sunday, Dec. 2-4 from 5:30-8 p.m. Over those three nights, at 2150 N. Alvernon Way, one may enjoy flickering lights, chamber music by the Southern Arizona Symphony String Quartet, Irish melodies from Scatter The Dust and more.

Food, beverages and over 100 works by the Gardens’ Porter Hall Gallery artist Mary Rosas will add to the atmosphere. Call 326-9686 or see for details. The wildly successful (and free) monthly meet-up known as 2nd Saturdays Downtown celebrates in style the evening of Dec. 10 all along Congress Street. Holiday-themed acts on the Scott Avenue Stage will include vocal cover group Desert Melodies, hot jazz and sultry blues from Lisa Otey and Diane Van Deurzen,a MyTown Music student showcase and dance from Dance for a Cause. Expect to find food and gift vendors, engaging street performers and special offers from area businesses. You surely don’t want to miss 2011’s final 2nd Saturday. 2ndSaturdaysDowntown. com has a full entertainment schedule. DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun, 6300 N. Swan Rd., welcomes all to La Fiesta de Guadalupe on Sunday, Dec. 11 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Although sacred, this celebration will be far from solemn; rather, a Yaqui deer dance and joyous performances by youth groups Mariachi Tesoro de Tucson and Ballet Folklorico Tapatío are the order of the day. Regional food will be served and piñatas hoisted aloft hourly. Learn more about visionary artist Ted DeGrazia and his “legendary

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Holiday Nights at Tohono Chul Park

photo: Christine Hubbard

Carrillo Magnet School students prepare for Las Posadas procession at La Fiesta de Guadalupe at DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun. The gallery’s fiesta is Dec 11, the procession is Dec 16.

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“Holiday Happenings” continued from page 9 landmark of art and architecture” at 299-9191 and Drink plenty of soothing herbal tea to prepare your voice for The Loft Cinema’s Very Merry Holiday Sing-a-long Spectacular. Captioned scenes from favorite seasonal films, television programs and music videos will encourage attendees to chime in and a “bad holiday sweater parade” is sure to attract droves of sarcastic hipsters. Nog will be provided. Buy tickets online at or simply show up at 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. on Thursday, Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, sees Carrillo K-5 Magnet School students carrying on a cherished tradition. This will be their 74th annual Las Posadas Procession, a reenactment of Mary and Joseph’s Bethlehem pilgrimage in search of shelter. Traditionally-garbed schoolchildren assemble at 440 S. Main Ave. at 7 p.m. before singing their way through downtown’s Barrio Viejo district. All are welcome to join them. Questions? Ring Carrillo Elementary at 225-1200. The Westside Coalition and Mercado San Agustín, 100 S. Avenida del Convito, present their 4th annual Mercado Holiday Bazaar the weekend of Dec. 16-18. Between the life-size gingerbread house, fabulous artisan foods and one-of-a-kind specialty gifts, none shall be sent away unsatisfied. Check out for a helpful map to the Mercado’s easily-overlooked location south of West Congress Street. Saturday, Dec.17 at 6:30 p.m., the 17th annual Downtown Parade of Lights delivers oodles of good cheer. Sponsored by the Downtown Tucson Partnership, this well-attended (read: tens of thousands of spectators) spectacle invites young and old to bask in the warmth of its shimmering floats and jolly participants. “Santa Claus will be there,” Partnership spokesperson Brandi Haga assures us. Beginning at the intersection of 17th Street and Stone Avenue, the parade twists and turns along city streets south of Broadway before arriving at Armory Park. will provide a precise route as the date approaches. The ever-popular Zoo Lights at Reid Park Zoo, 1100 S. Randolph Way, are set to brighten the nights of Dec. 2-4, 8-11 and 15-23 from 6-8 p.m. Live animals will be tucked safely away while dazzling displays, sculptures and falling “snow” transform the zoo into a winter wonderland. Call 791-4022 or purchase tickets online at Winterhaven Festival of Lights, a six-decade Tucson tradition that showcases the neighborhood’s holiday decorations, delights hundreds of thousands of people each year. Bordered by Prince Road on the north, Country Club Road on the east, Ft. Lowell Boulevard on the south, and Tucson Boulevard on the west, the nights include walk-throughs, drivethroughs, hay-rides and trolleys rides. It happens Dec. 10-25, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Visit for complete details. Just can’t celebrate enough? Here’s more: On the Saturdays of Dec. 3, 10 and 17 the Mini-Time Machine Museum, 4455 E. Camp Lowell Dr., presents creative craft-making workshops at Wee Winter Wonderland. Museum hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. 881-0606, On Saturday, Dec. 3 from 4-7 p.m., the Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance brings you A Winter Night’s Dream at St. Philip’s Plaza, 4280 N. Campbell Ave., with live music, wine tasting and more. 797-3959, At dusk the weekends of Dec. 2-3, 9-10, and 16-17, the Tanque Verde Swap Meet at 4100 S. Palo Verde Rd. hosts a Christmas Light Parade complete with candy tossing and a 110-foot light train. 294-4252, The Fridays of Dec. 2, 9, 16 and 23, Holiday Boulevard at Main Gate Square will be open for business. Santa sightings, hidden Ben’s Bells and dining deals are all part of the package. 622-8613, We wish you a merry [fill in the blank]! n

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Events photo: Kris Hanning

7th Annual Holiday Express Down at the Depot is Sat, Dec 17 at the Southern Arizona Transportation Museum.

photo: Mary Karrels

Ballet Tucson holds their 11th Annual Sugar Plum Tea, featuring a holiday marketplace and silent auction, on Sun, Dec 4.

December EVENTS

HANDMADE HEIRLOOMS FOR THE HOLIDAYS Holiday crafts, art, vintage and enter-

HOLIDAY TALES FROM NATIVE PEOPLES Hear Native American Tales by a Master Story-

See “Holiday Happenings” on pages 9-10 for additional holiday events.

tainment. 1pm-6pm. Market Inn Marketplace, 403 N. 6th Ave. 882-3988,

teller. 2pm-4pm. Colossal Cave Mountain Park, 16721 E. Old Spanish Trail. 647-7275,


16TH ANNUAL ART AUCTION & CELEBRATION Marvel at unique art pieces inspired by

Thu 1 FIRST THURSDAYS Experience the Main Gate Square Marketplace with live music, shopping deals, art displays and culinary demonstrations. Free. 5pm8pm. Main Gate Square, University Boulevard between Park and Euclid Avenues.


The 11th Annual event is a celebration of Mexico-USA borderland holiday traditions with mariachi bands and ballet folklorico performances. 7pm. $10-$15. Fox Theatre, 17 W. Congress St. 544-9543,


The 30th Annual Nordic Guild Fair hosts The Norse Federation, Sons of Norway, Scandinavian crafts, folk dancers and more. 9am-3pm. Desert Lutheran Church, 5360 E. Pima St. 834-4359.


Crafts, gifts for kids with Santa flying in by helicopter at 9am-11am. Adults, $12.75$15.50; children, $9, under 6, free. 9am-11:30am. Pima Air & Space Museum, 6000 E. Valencia Rd. 6184850,

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music, Beatles memorabilia, instruments, amps, pro audio, mixers, racks, outboard gear and gifts. Early bird shoppers $5 at 9am, $2 admission at 10am. 9am-4pm. Plaza Palomino, 2970 N. Swan Rd. #147.,


Self-guided tour: Learn about raising chicks, talk to backyard chicken keepers and see a wide variety of creative coop styles and sizes. $5. 10am-3pm. Tickets at Food Conspiracy Co-op, 412 N. 4th Ave.

Sun 4 HOLIDAY ARTS AND CRAFTS FAIR Local artists and craftspeople show and sell jewelry, woodwork, wrought iron, stained glass and more. 9am2pm. Live bluegrass music by Rudy Cortese and Joel Leland. Free. Cat Mountain Station, 2740 S. Kinney Rd. 838-3779,

EIGHT ANNUAL HANUKKAH MALL MADNESS For children of all ages! Celebrate Hanukkah with games, music and dreidel fun. 1pm-3pm. Park Place Mall, 5870 E. Broadway Blvd. 577-9393,

or made entirely from recycled bike parts. Sneak peek Sat 3. 6pm-9pm. Free. The Whistle Stop Depot, 127 W. 5th St. 628-7950,

11TH ANNUAL SUGAR PLUM TEA Features a Holiday Marketplace, silent auction and a narration of the Nutcracker story with characters from the ballet. 11am and 3pm. $75 per person. Marriott Tucson University Park, 880 E. 2nd St. 745-3000,


400 arts and crafts booths, 35 food vendors, performance stages, street musicians, food, jugglers, kids entertainment, face painting, balloons, more. 10am-5pm. Free. 6245004,


Winter Wonderland Fun! Parents can relax and enjoy a night off while the J-Care staff provides a fun evening for children grades K-5. 6pm-10pm. Tucson Jewish Community Center, 3800 E. River Rd. 299-3000,

events STUFF THE HUMMERS Toy Drive and Car Show being put on by The Christina-Taylor Green Memorial Foundation and Sullivan’s Steakhouse for the Salvation Army of Tucson, with an ugly sweater and crazy holiday hats contests. 10am-12pm. Sullivan’s Steakhouse, 1785 E. River Rd.

EMILY DICKINSON 181TH BIRTHDAY BASH Kore Press’ Big Read Tucson closes out 10 weeks of innovative community reading, writing and creative projects with performances, birthday cake, and an art exhibit. Events take place at Hotel Congress, Etherton Gallery, Sacred Machine, and the Big Read popup gallery space on 6th Avenue. 5pm.



A monthly downtown fest with MyTown Music, Desert Melodies, Dance for A Cause, Diane Van Deurzen & Lisa Otey on Scott Avenue Stage. Southwest Soul Circuit at the 5th Avenue stage. Street performances, more. Free. 5pm-10:30pm. Congress Street,

Sun 11 LA FIESTA DE GUADALUPE The annual family festival celebrates Our Lady of Guadalupe with spirited outdoor performances by youthful mariachi and ballet folklorico groups. 10am-4pm. Degrazia Gallery in the Sun, 6300 N. Swan Rd. 299-9191,

for sale. Free. 12pm-5pm. El Centro Cultural, 40 W. Broadway Blvd. 629-9536

7TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY EXPRESS Write letters to the North Pole, listen to a reading of The Polar Express, watch the movie, and take a photo with Santa in front of Locomotive 1673. Bring a can of food for the community food bank. Free. 2pm-4pm. 414 N. Toole Ave. 6232223,

PRESIDIO LUMINARIA FESTIVAL A living history celebration to welcome the holiday season. Free. 6pm9pm. Presidio San Agustín del Tucson, 133 W.  Washington St. 837-8119,

17th ANNUAL PARADE OF LIGHTS Lighted floats, vehicles and musical groups wend through Downtown. Free. 6pm. 837-6504, DowntownTucson. org

Sun 18 EARLY HANUKkAH PARTY Spin a dreidel, have some delicious Hanukkah treats, and spend time with family and friends! 5pm- 7pm. Tucson Jewish Community Center, 3800 E. River Rd. 2993000,


Featuring a concert band, six big bands and jazz choir. 2pm. Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway Blvd. 971-6694,

joy dreidel games with a Hanukkah singalong, led by Shabbat Scott and Julie, followed by the lighting of the biggest menorah in Tucson for the first night of Hanukkah. 4:30pm-5:15pm. Tucson Jewish Community Center, 3800 E. River Rd. 299-3000,

Fri 16

Sat 31


LAS POSADAS PROCESSION A Mexican tradition that reenacts the pilgrimage of Mary and Joseph as they traveled from house to house seeking refuge, children in traditional costumes wind through the streets of Barrio Viejo singing traditional songs. Free. 7pm. Carrillo School, 440 S. Main Ave. 225-1200

Sat 17 FERIA NAVIDENA Music and dance to the extravagances of the holiday season with traditional tamales and refreshments

film listings The Loft Cinema 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. 795-7777 (show times recording), 322-LOFT, Times vary. Dates indicate first date of movie run. Fri 2: First Friday Shorts, Being Elmo, Gremlins, House of Boys Sun 4: Woody Allen’s Manhattan Wed 7: From Here To Eternity Thu 8: Eames: The Architect and The Painter, And Other ProjectsVideo Art Screening Fri 9: Mozart’s Sister, Revenge of the Electric Car, Black Christmas Thu 15: The Very Merry Holiday Sing-A-Long Spectacular Fri 16: American Teacher, My Afternoons with Margueritte, Home Alone Sun 18: Santa’s Cool Holiday Film Festival Fri 23: The Nightmare Before Christmas Fri 30: The Woman on the 6th Floor Fox Theatre 17 W. Congress St. 624-1515, Sat 3: Warren Miller’s “Like There’s No Tomorrow” (8pm) Sun 4: A Christmas Carol with a Tucson Twist (4pm) Tue 20: The Polar Express (2pm & 7pm) Fri 23: It’s A Wonderful Life (2pm & 7pm)



Pima County Public Libraries 594-5500, Library.Pima.Gov Sat 3: Saturday Cinema, 2pm (Valencia Large Meeting Room) Tue 6: Family Movie, 3:30pm (Salazar-Ajo) Wed 7: Teen Screen Movie Matinee, 3pm (Murphy-Wilmot) Sat 10: Troop 1500, 1:30 (WoodsMemorial), 3:30 (Miller-Golf Links) Mon 12: Troop 1500, 6pm (Himmel Park) Wed 14: Teen Screen Movie Matinee, 3pm (Murphy- Wilmot) Mon 19: Winter Break Movies, 2pm (Flowing Wells) Tue 20: Winter Break Movies, 2pm (Flowing Wells) Fri 23: Troop 1500, 2pm (Joyner Green Valley) Tue 27: Winter Break Movies, 2pm (Flowing Wells) Wed 28: Winter Break Movies, 2pm (Flowing Wells) The Screening Room 127 E. Congress St. 882-0204, December films not available as of press time.

The Polar Express shows at the Fox Dec. 20.

See page 6 for New Year’s Eve events.

Ongoing WINTERHAVEN FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS Central Tucson neighborhood adorned with holiday decorations, using LED lights. Walk through every night 10Dec 25. Drive-through on Dec 13, 15, 20. Free. 6pm-10pm. Winterhaven Neighborhood, in between Fort Lowell Road, Prince Road, Country Club, Tucson Boulevard. 881-4483,

Home Alone screens at the Loft Dec. 16.

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Arts photo: Patrick McArdle

photo: Patrick McArdle

Toole Avenue improvements included mural paintings and art installations.

New Life on Toole Avenue by Kelly Lewis

Downtown’s Toole Avenue recently got a makeover when 140 volunteers came together to paint murals and plant trees and plants on October 22. The re-design was made in an effort to help Toole Avenue become a more central part to the arts warehouse district, and shape it so that it can be a major draw for the arts community. “We created an official district,” said Michael Keith, CEO of the Downtown Tucson Partnership. “It’s tangible. We gave physical shape to the idea that this is the southernmost edge of the warehouse district and it has the potential of being a major arts boulevard in the downtown area.” If new business is any indication of success, Toole Avenue is certainly moving in the right direction with the addition of BLX Skate Shop and Borderlands Brewing Company, and a slew of events that have drawn crowds, including last month’s Food Truck Roundup at Dinnerware Artspace. “All of downtown is jumping more than it ever has, and I’ve been here for 24 years,” said Steven Eye of Solar Culture, 31 E. Toole Ave. “Our block is growing in leaps and bounds too. The vision is coming true—we were trying to create this to be the best arts block in the city and it is starting to happen. It feels great.” Eye has been renting several of the warehouses owned by Fenton Investment Company, and has filled them with artists who each bring something unique to the table. “We are beyond anything we could’ve ever imagined,” Eye said. “We’re at 100 percent occupancy in the warehouses that Solar Culture is involved with. It was a really difficult time, but it’s transformed into a wonderful opportunity for everyone.” The streetscape project was funded in part through the Mayor’s Backto-Basics Fund and through grant money obtained by Dinnerware Artspace owner David Aguirre six years ago. Aguirre said he feels the project helped to liven up the pedestrian experience on the road and make Toole Avenue a more visually appealing street. “It really warmed the place up,” Aguirre said. “From Stone Avenue to Sixth Avenue was all asphalt and concrete. I’ve noticed people walking as tourists down Toole, and visiting the museum, and now their pedestrian

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experience can be livened up.” So what’s next for Toole Avenue? Michael Keith says he hopes it will one day become a destination in and of itself. “If downtown is going to be successful, it’s going to have to have cultural, social and economic diversity,” said Keith. “One day, there’ll be a street fair, there’ll be performances, there’ll be independent films being shown, there will be so many reasons to visit Toole Avenue.”

What’s On The Block? Borderlands Brewing Company: Borderlands opens to the public this month, and beer-lovers can come down and try the latest of their local brews. Their warehouse will also be used as an event space in the future, said Mike Mallozzi, co-owner. (The space was utilized for the VelociPrint Show last month.) It is located at 119 E. Toole Ave. and online at BLX Skate Shop: An eclectic retailer that focuses on skateboarding, the business resides at 35 E. Toole Ave. in the space formerly occupied by Lulubell Toy Bodega. The store features brand name and custom-designed skateboards and equipment, with a selection of apparel as well. Check them out at Dinnerware Artspace: Most recently, Dinnerware hosted The Food Truck Roundup, featuring food vendors selling Mexican, Jamaican and Korean fare, and owner David Aguirre said he hopes for the food trucks to be a more regular feature. Visit the gallery at 119 E. Toole Ave., and Facebook. com/dinnerware. Solar Culture: Solar Culture, at 31 E. Toole Ave., will host several concerts in December, including psychedelic/funk band Ocote Soul Sounds on Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. Check out the rest of their schedule at SolarCulture. org. Skrappy’s: The Tucson Youth Collective, 191 E. Toole Ave., serves as an afterschool center and an all ages music venue. Visit skrappysaz for more information. n

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photo: Larry Hanelin


by Herb Stratford

ZUZI! Dance Company’s 14th Annual Winter Solstice Celebration: Sombra y luz – Shadow and Light, Dec. 16-18, 22.

With the holidays upon us, there’s an abundance of fantastic arts and cultural performances to experience in Tucson. Whether you want to experience a little holiday-themed drama on stage, inspiring vocal performances or dance events, this is the month to get out and see what Tucson has to offer. Here are a few gems to start you off and put you in the mood. Happy Holidays!

Arizona Rose Theatre “The Magic of Christmas” tells the tale of labor strife at the North Pole and the effects of the 21th century on Christmas. Dec. 10, 16-17 at 7 p.m., Dec. 11, 18 at 2 p.m. Photos ops with Santa after the show! Temple of Music and Art Cabaret Theatre, 330 S. Scott Ave. 888-0509,

Ballet Tucson Holiday classic, “The Nutcracker,” returns to Tucson Dec. 22-24. The classic tale transports its audience to a magical land with toy soldiers and mice amid a winternight’s dream. Thursday, Dec. 22 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 23 at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 24 at 3 p.m. Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. 745-3000,

Beowulf Alley Theatre Company Beowulf Alley continues its Old Time Radio Theatre series with “Archie Andrews: Christmas Shopping” and “Radio City Playhouse: Twas the Night Before Christmas” on Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. Also in Dec., “Orson Welles: A Christmas Carol,” on Dec. 20 at 7 p.m. 11 S. 6th Ave. 882-0555,

Black Cherry Burlesque This show spices up the holiday season with two performances on Dec. 2 at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Surly Wench Pub, 424 N. 4th Ave. 882-0009,

Borderlands Theater There are six chances to catch the 16th annual “A Tucson Pastorela” this season, with shows Dec. 15 through Dec. 18: at 10 a.m. Dec. 1516, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 15-17 and 2 p.m. Dec. 18. Presented at the Leo Rich Theatre, 260 S.

16 | December 2011

Church Ave. 882-7406,

Gaslight Theatre

p.m., Dec. 18, 3 p.m. Mission San Xavier del Bac, 1950 W. San Xavier Rd.

The annual holiday offering this year is entitled “Christmas in the Big Apple” through January 1. Set in NYC in 1933, this tale is a mash-up of the classic Dickens “A Christmas Carol” and other assorted cultural influences. 7010 E. Broadway Blvd. 886-9428,

Southern Arizona Women’s Chorus

Invisible Theatre

Tucson Symphony Orchestra

“My Mother’s Italian, My Father’s Jewish, I’m Home for the Holidays,” Dec. 19 and 20 at 7:30p.m., Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway Blvd. 882-9271, InvisibleTheatre. com

Handel’s “Messiah” Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 11 at 2 p.m. at the Catalina Foothills High School auditorium, 4300 E. Sunrise Dr. and “Holiday Spectacular! TSO Pops! Series” Dec. 17, 7:30 p.m., and 18, 2 p.m., at the Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. 882-8585,

Moscow Ballet “The Great Russian Nutcracker” returns to Tucson, and is on stage at the Fox Theatre for two shows on Dec. 22 at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. This acclaimed touring version of the classic ballet has wowed audiences all over the United States. Fox Tucson Theatre, 17 W. Congress St. 547-3040,

Pima Community College Music “Holiday Concert,” Dec. 4 at 3 p.m., featuring the PCC Chorale and College Singers. PCC West Campus Proscenium Theatre, 2202 W. Anklam Rd. 206-6986, Pima.Edu/CFA

Sons of Orpheus Choir “14thAnnual Holiday Benefit Concert,” for the Community Food Bank takes place on Dec. 7 at 7p.m. Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway Blvd. The choir’s 15th Annual “Christmas at San Xavier” concerts, to benefit the restoration and preservation of Mission San Xavier del Bac are: Dec. 13-15 at 6 p.m. and 8

“A Holiday Twist” choral concert has two shows this month - Friday, Dec. 9, 7 p.m. at Ascension Lutheran Church, and Sunday, Dec. 11, 3 p.m. at UA’s Crowder Hall, 1017 N. Olive Rd. 4043148,

UA Presents “The Christmas Music of Mannheim Steamroller by Chip Davis:” Grammy Award-winning ensemble Mannheim Steamroller celebrates the spirit of the season with its unmistakable sound and multi-media show on Dec. 4 at 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. “The Spirit of Christmas,” Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 11 at 2 p.m., is a Broadwaystyle Christmas variety show with a cast of 100 + singers and dancers. Centennial Hall, 1020 E. University Blvd. 621-3341,

ZUZI! Dance Company “14th Annual Winter Solstice Celebration: Sombra y luz – Shadow and Light,” showcasing dances inspired by visual artists who use shadow and light in their works with performances on Dec. 16-18, 22 at 7:30 p.m. Zuzi’s Theatre, 738 N. 5th Ave. 629-0237,

December 2011 | 17

18 | December 2011


Art Galleries/exhibits



The Secret Santa Show opens Fri, Dec 2 and runs through Fri, Dec 30. Over 20 participating artists. Thu-Sat, 11am-4pm and by appointment. 1122 N. Stone Ave. 624-7099,

ARTSEYE GALLERY Chris Gall: Please Don’t Tell begins with an opening reception on Sat, Dec 3 from 6pm-9pm, shows through March 15. Mon-Fri, 9am-6pm; Sat 10am-5pm. 3550 E. Grant Rd., 327-7291.


Small Work Holiday Exhibition includes artists Linda Chappel, Gonzalo Espinosa and more. Exhibit is Thu, Dec 1 to Fri, Dec 30. Artist reception Sat, Dec 10 from 6pm-8pm. Thurs-Sat, 12pm-6pm and by appointment. 403 N. 6th Ave., 882-3988.

BLUE RAVEN GALLERY Fins, Fur, Feathers and Scales continues through Jan 14. Features scales, exoskeletons and animal works. Holiday Artisans Market continues through Jan 14. Features holiday artwork. Thu, noon-4pm; Fri, noon-5pm; Sat 11am-5pm. 3042 N. 1st Ave. 623-1003,


The Work of Will Taylor continues through Sat, Dec 17. Sun-Mon, 11am to 4pm; Tue-Sat, 10am to 6pm. 2920 E. Broadway Blvd. 882-0800,


Ansel Adams: The View From Here opens Dec 10 and runs through Feb 5. Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm; Sun, noon5pm. 1030 N. Olive Rd. 621-7968,

“Arrogant Birds” by Moira Geoffrion is part of the Avian Personae exhibit at the Stone Dragon Studio.


Willow Bader: Bodies In Motion continues through Fri, Dec 23. Opening Dec 3 with a reception from 6pm-9pm is High Contrast, a multimedia exhibition in black and white, shows through Dec 31. Tue-Sat, 11am-5pm. 439 N. 6th Ave. #171. 622-8997,


Martin Quintanilla’s Tucson exhibit runs Sat, Dec 3 through Thu, Dec 24. Opening reception Sat, Dec 3 from 6pm to 10pm. Tues-Fri 11am-5pm, Sat 11am-4pm. 110 E. 6th St. 398-6557,

DAVIS DOMINGUEZ GALLERY Paintings and works on paper by Jan Olsson and clay sculpture by Joy Fox continues through Sat, Dec 17. Paintings by Joanne Kerrihard, steel sculpture by David Mazza, and paintings by Jean Stern in the Alcove opens Wed, Dec 21 and continues through Jan 28. Thu-Fri, 11am-5pm; Sat, 11am-4pm. 154 E. 6th St. 629-9759,


Ignite: Neon and Light Show continues through Jan 15. Tue-Wed, Sat, 11am-4pm; Thu-Fri, 11am-5pm. 2612 E. Broadway Blvd. 319-0888,

DEGRAZIA GALLERY IN THE SUN The Little Gallery presents Dale and Glen Folsom’s Modern Western Art Show through Fri, Dec 2. Geri Bringman’s Acrylics on Canvas and Paper runs Sun, Dec 4 through Fri, Dec 16. Madeline Thorpe’s Sand Blasted Glass and Etched Copper runs Sun, Dec 18 through Fri, Dec 30. Daily, 10am-4pm. 6300 N. Swan Rd. 299-9191,


Small Wonders, an exhibition and sale of small original artworks in various media, continues through Sat, Dec 17. Tue-Sat, noon4pm. 33 S. 6th Ave. 620-0947,

Kate Breakey continues though Jan 21. Tue-Sat, 11am-5pm. 135 S. 6th Ave. 6247370,


Manhood, an exhibition exploring the ideas of masculinity, runs Fri, Dec 2 to Sat, Dec 17. Artist Reception Fri, Dec 2 from 7pm-9pm. Gallery open by appointment. Fluxx Studio and Gallery, 414 E. 9th St. 882-0242,

continued on page 20

Photo courtesy of artist Jude Cook

ETHERTON GALLERY Slow Light, landscape images taken over 30 years, by

Ignite Neon and Light Show continues through Jan 15 at DECO.

December 2011 | 19


ARTS OBSIDIAN GALLERY Figures & Frames: sculpture by Curt Brill and Michael Cajero and drawings and paintings by Curt Brill, Michael Cajero, Brooke Grucella, Laurel Hansen, Joe Hatton and Don West. Exhibits through Jan 14. 410 N. Toole Ave. #120. 577-3598,


TPAC Philabaum Glass Annual Studio Sale continues Thu, Dec 1 through Sat, Dec 3. Studio Hotshots opens Sat, Dec 10 with a reception from 5pm to 8pm. Tue-Sat, 10am-5pm. 711 S. 6th Ave. 884-7404,


An exhibit by Mary Rosas opens Thu, Dec 3 through Jan 17. Reception is Thu, Dec 8 from 5pm-7pm. Daily, 8:30am-4:30pm. $8, Adults; $4, Children 4-12; Free, Children 3 and younger. 2150 N. Alvernon Way. 326-9686,


Poco A Poco (Little By Little) opens Sat, Dec 3 and continues through Jan 7. An exhibition of small works all priced at $222 or less. Fri-Sat, 1pm-5pm & by appointment. 218 E. 6th St. 8815335,


Featuring the art of Daniel Martin Diaz. Wed-Fri, 1pm4pm; Sat, 4pm-9pm; Sun, 3pm-6pm. 245 E. Congress St. 777-7403,

SOCIAL SCIENCE MODERN VINTAGE Romance the Paint: an exhibition of new paintings by Audra Cobelis, opens with a reception Dec 9, 5pm-10pm. 43 S. 6th Ave.

STONE DRAGON STUDIO Avian Personae: A Tribute to Nature opens Fri, Dec 2 and runs through Sat, Jan 7. Artist’s Reception Fri, Dec 9 from 4pm-7pm. Wed-Sat, 11am-4pm & by appointment, 405-5800. 1122 N. Stone Ave. 624-7099 TEMPLE GALLERY

Ken Figuered: Altered States continues through Jan 3. Mon–Fri, 10am-5pm. 330 S. Scott Ave. 624-7370,

TUCSON MUSEUM OF ART Work by Audra Cobelis shows at Social Science Modern Vintage this month.

Art Galleries/exhibits



Oil and linen portraits and character studies. Thu-Sat, 11am- 4pm and by appointment. George Strasburger Studio and Gallery, 172 E. Toole St. 882-2160,

JOSEPH GROSS GALLERY Terraria Gigantica: The World Under Glass by Dana Fritz continues through Jan, 19. Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm; Sat-Sun, 10am-4pm. 1031 N. Olive Rd. 626-4215,


2011 Annual BFA Exhibition continues through Wed, Dec 7. Expedition by Camden Hardy opens Tues, Dec 13, shows through Jan 5. Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm; Sat-Sun, 10am-4pm. 1031 N. Olive Rd. 6244215,

LOUIS CARLOS BERNAL GALLERY Limited Edition: Prints From ArtistCollectors continues through Dec 16. Mon, Wed 10:30am-5pm; Tue, Thu 10am5pm; Fri 10am-3pm. 2202 W. Anklam Rd.206-6942, Pima.Edu/cfa


Currently exhibit is Camp Bosworth: Plata o Plomo. An artist’s talk is Dec. 14, 5:30pm. Wed-Sun, noon-5pm. $8, adults; free, children under 12, members, military; free to all second Wednesday of the month. 265 S. Church Ave. 624-5019,

20 | December 2011

Who Shot Rock and Roll: A Photography History, 1955 to the Present continues through Jan 15. El Nacimiento continues through Mar 18. Tue-Sat, 10am-4pm; Sun, noon-4pm. $8, adults; $6, seniors; $3, students 13+; free, children under 12, members Free to all the first Sunday of the month. 140 N. Main Ave. 624-2333,


Good Vibrations: The Guitar as Design, Craft and Function- A ‘Tucson Rocks’ Exhibition continues through Jan 15. Tue-Fri, 9am-5pm; Sat-Sun, noon-4pm. $5 adults; children/students/faculty, free. 1031 N. Olive Rd.

UA POETRY CENTER Portraits of Poets by Gwyneth Scally exhibits through Jan 13. Mon/Thurs, 9am-8pm; Tues/Wed, 9am-6pm; Fri, 9am-5pm. 1508 E. Helen St. 626-3765, Poetry.Arizona.Edu

UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA HONORS COLLEGE AND WORKER, INC You Are Here: Downtown and UA will showcase photographs, interactive maps, field guides and more. Free. Downtown Office of Public Perception, 825 E. University Blvd.


The Holiday Bazaar continues through Dec 21. Reception Dec 3 from 7pm-10pm. Tue-Sat, 1pm-5pm. 388 S. Stone Ave. 629-9976,

December 2011 | 21




photo: Ed Flores

For the majority of holiday performances, see Arts & Culture Guy, page 16.


“Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead” continues through Sun, Dec 4. Thu-Sat, 7:30pm, Sun, 2pm. $10 regular admission, $5 students and military. Arid Rose Theater, 127 S. 4th Ave. 690-2616,

ARIZONA FRIENDS OF CHAMBER MUSIC Takacs Quartet performs Wed, Dec 7, 7:30pm. TCC’s Leo Rich Theatre, 260 S. Church Ave. 577-3769,




“Daddy Long Legs” continues through Dec 17. Various show times. Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. 884-8210,

Fusions under the direcion of Aurora Gonçalaves-Shaner takes the stage as part of PCC Dance on Fri, Dec 9 and Sat, Dec 10.

BEOWULF ALLEY THEATRE COMPANY “A Cactus Christmas” explores a familyfriendly tale for the holidays about squatters in the ghost town of Wishbone, AZ starting Fri, Dec 9. Various show times, see the calendar on the website. Beowulf Alley, 11 S. 6th Ave. 882-0555,

CARNIVAL OF ILLUSION photo courtesy Live Theatre Workshop

Sarlot and Eyed perform mind twisting illusions on weekends. See website for various dates and times. Tucson Double Tree Hotel, 445 S. Alvernon Wy. 615-5299,

DAVINICI PREP AND STUDIO CONNECTIONS “Once On This Island Jr.,” a nonstop sing and dance performance with a catchy Caribbean flavored score on Fri, Dec 2, Sat, Dec 3; 6:30pm, & Sun, Dec 4; 3pm. $5. St Francis In The Foothills, 4625 E. River Rd. 329-3707,

DIANE VAN DEURZEN & LISA OTEY A Holiday to Remember performances are: Dec 17, 7pm at St. Francis in the Foothills, 4625 E. River Rd.; Dec 18, 7pm, O’Shaughnessy’s, 2200 N. Camino Principal; Dec 19 at 7pm, Z Mansion, 288 N. Church Ave. 370-5912,


Dec 2, 11th Annual Fiesta Feliz Navidena, 7pm; Dec 16, Christmas with Aaron Neville, 7:30pm; Dec 17, Neshama Carlebach with Gospel Choir, 8pm; Dec 18, Dancing in the Streets El Cascanueces, 3pm; Dec 22, Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, 4pm & 7pm. 17 W. Congress St. 624-1515,

INVISIBLE THEATRE “Reckless,” a Christmas fable, continues through Dec 31 at the Live Theatre Workshop.

22 | December 2011

“Graceland,” by Ellen Byron, opens for a weekend for devoted Elvis fans. Thurs, Dec 1; 7:30pm, Fri, Dec 2; 8pm and Sat, Dec 3; 3pm and 8pm. 1400 N. 1st Ave. 882-9721,


“The Tortoise and The Hare” continues Sunday afternoons until Jan 29. “Reckless,” a Christmas fable, continues through Dec 31. Various times and prices. Live Theatre Workshop, 5317 E. Speedway Blvd. 327-4242,

NOT BURNT OUT JUST UNSCREWED The improv comedy troupe performs Fri, Dec 4 at 7:30 pm at Revolutionary Grounds Coffee House, 606 N. 4th Ave., for audiences of all ages. Another performance will be held on Fri, Dec 16 at 7pm at Rock N Java Café, 7555 W. Twin Peaks Rd. Free. 861-2986,

ODYSSEY STORYTELLING SERIES “Superpowers: The Extraordinary Show” is Thu, Dec 1 at 7pm. $7. Fluxx Studios, 414 E. 9th St. 730-4112,


“Fusion,” a dance performance, takes the stage Fri, Dec 9-Sat, Dec 10. $10. PCC College Orchestra in concert on Sat, Dec 3 at 3pm. $6. PCC Wind Ensemble Concert on Thu, Dec 1 at 7:30pm. $6. Proscenium Theatre, 2202 W. Anklam Rd. 206-6986,

TUCSON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Just For Kids presents the TSO Piano Trio at the Tucson Symphony Center, 2175 N. 6th Ave. on Sat, Dec 3 at 10am and 11:15am. Classic Series presents Mozart and Prokofiev on Fri, Dec 2 at 8pm and Sun, Dec 4 at 2pm at the Tucson Convention Center’s Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. 882-8585,

TUCSON GUITAR SOCIETY Brad Richter in concert presents classical and percussive finger-style guitar playing on Sun, Dec 11 at 2:30pm. 342-0022.

UA’S ARIZONA REPERTORY THEATRE “The Secret Garden” continues through Dec 4. Marroney Theatre, 1025 N. Olive Rd. 621-1162,

UA PRESENTS UA Dance takes the stage Thurs, Dec 1 through Sun, Dec 4. Centennial Hall, 1020 E. University Blvd. 621-3341.

UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA SCHOOL OF THEATRE, FILM AND TELEVISION Celebrate UA’s 100th year of statehood with a nostalgic journey through Arizona’s rich history for one night only; Wed, Dec 7 at 7:30pm; $7 a person. Marroney Theatre, 1303 E. University Blvd. 621-1162, Arizona.Tix.Com



Hotspots for Indie Holiday Gifting by Monica Surfaro Spigelman Looking for something special with no mass chains in sight? If it’s the little guys you love, then you’re like the rest of us supporting the Local First Arizona Buy Local Movement this month. The City Council has proclaimed Buy Local Month through Christmas, and Tucson’s Community Manager Corey Dane is planning a series of gatherings to further inspire shoppers. Check out small businesses around town, where items hand-spun or vintage-flavored have special significance. Zócalo’s holiday list has a sackful of ideas to get you shopping for one-of-a-kind or funky gifts with stylish attitude. Herein find 20 favorites plus a best of the rest round-up. Be sure to call ahead as holiday hours will vary. Load up your sleighs and carry on, darling elves!

December 2011 | 23

“Truck Stop” gifts at Triple T

South by Southwest Sources

Neighborhood Ethnology Study at MOCA.

Indie Hotspots

Cat Mountain Station 2740 S. Kinney Rd. 578-8795, Southwest on Kinney Road on the flipside of the Tucson Mountains is Cat Mountain, a complex that includes a café, bed and breakfast and a couple of local crafts and vintage shops. At Affairs of the Arts you’ll find handmade books, collage pins and small blown glass bottles, all under $10. Also in the complex is Cat Mountain Emporium, where there’s great jewelry including old Indian and Mexican pieces, vintage lace, whole sets of dishes and a plethora of unique items, from $5 and up. Pima Air and Space Musem 6000 E. Valencia Rd. 574-0462, PimaAir. org. If you have an aviation enthusiast on your list, look no further than here! It’s not only a museum, but host to a shop full of airplane gear and other oddities. Authentic parts from military aircraft are good paper weights and pieces of art. All one-of-a-kind squawk boxes, fuel gauges, switches and toggles start at $20. Interior B-36 photography and in-flight shots of active and historic aircraft start at $15. Triple T Truck Stop 5451 E. Benson Highway, 574-0800. This venerable truck stop rocks…for more than just the food. In the gift store you can pick up Zuni fetish earrings ($45) or browse a great assortment of regional books from local publisher Treasure Chest. After you grab a slice of the Triple T’s classic deep-dish apple pie from the diner, head into the Chrome Shop for more than mud flaps, odd steering wheel covers and countrywestern CDs. We know you’ve always wanted those Bull Balls to hang off the back end of your RV (in chrome, rubber or lights, $34 and up). Or add a smaller model to holiday stockings: Bull Ball key chains ($4.99).

Salsa at La Tiendita

Robot Measuring cups at Buffalo Exchange

24 | December 2011

Downtown/Barrio Gifting Destinations Museums-as-Markets: At MOCA, 265 S. Church Ave. 624-5019,, you can do your kooky and cool shopping: A mod sampler might include a booklet-sized artist multiple by Bill Mackey (Neighborhood Ethnography Study, $25) or a mole-inspired napkin set, industrially embroidered, by artist-in-resident Armando Miguelez (set, $30). At the Tucson Museum of Art, 140 N. Main Ave. 624-2333, TucsonArts. com, pick up one of Allison Rockefeller’s hand rattles in the shape of horses, elephants, zebras, dogs or cats ($49). There’s also an assortment of hand-painted locally made HR Coors ceramics (plates start at $30). La Tiendita 311 N. Court Ave. 622-1922, This quaint shop, stocked with quirky Mexicana, adjoins El Charro Café, which has released its Mexican art calendars since the 1930s. You can continue the tradition and pick up a 2012 calendar ($5) now in stock. You also will find El Charro salsas (including a Gluten Free Red Enchilada Cooking Sauce) or holiday tamales (including the holiday Festive tamales with red and green chili strips). If you purchase two $50 gift cards you get an extra $22 gift card, commemorating the year, 1922, that El Charro was founded. Buffalo Exchange 250 E. Congress St. 882-2939, This mecca of in repurposed, hip fashion also has a hodgepodge of handselected extras for gift giving. All kinds of juicy gift ideas including Gnome or Wild West Garden plant/garden kits ($14.50), or Robot Measuring cups ($9.50 for a full set). Buffalo Exchange is unique for the holidays because you don’t need cash to get gifts – you can do a trade with your former favorites. Remember also to participate in Coats for Cubs if you have real fur apparel, including trims. Your donations will be used to provide bedding and comfort to orphaned and injured wildlife. Coats for Cubs is on through Earth Day 2012. La Pilita 420 S. Main Ave. 882-7454, When you bundle up and head to Barrio Viejo on December 16 to watch Tucson’s traditional and colorful La Posadas procession, don’t forget to stop in the nearby La Pilita Museum, to browse a fascinating exhibition of historic La Posadas photos. Also check out opportunities for stocking stuffers (locally made or vintage ornaments, starting around $2), or larger regional gifts like talavera planting pots and bowls (starting around $20). La Posadas holiday cards by Virginia Oliveras are $1.

continued on page 27

December 2011 | 25

26 | December 2011

Indie Hotspots

Mercado San Agustin 100 S. Avenida del Convento, 461-1110, The mercado sparkles with its holiday fair December 16-18, however anytime this month you’ll find the market adorned with holiday ornaments and flowers, and full of shopping opportunities. In one stop you can nibble on Mexican pastries, slurp a snow cone or grab a warming platillos while shopping for locally and handmade moccasins at San Agustin Trading Co., or for Taxco silver at the Silveria. Sterling 925 bracelets start at $20. You’ll also find imported talavera crosses starting at $7 and locally-made Sonora paper flowers and cascarones, starting at $3. Maynards Market 400 N. Toole Ave. 545-0577,, Create rustic and locally-sourced gift baskets from treasures you’ll find at this adventurous depot market. Choose a wine, or select soap from the locally-made Flor de Mayo line. Mrs. Burns’ Famous Lemon Basil Herb (made with desert-adapted strain of culinary basil) is a favorite, crafted by local ethnobotanist/artist Martha Ames Burgess. Another choice for your basket is a loaf of artisan breads from Small Planet Bakery (in Tucson over 30 years). St. Augustine’s Cathedral 192 S. Stone Ave. 623-6351, On Sunday mornings in December, the Cathedral’s wrought-iron ramada, beautifully adorned with colorful metal flowers and butterflies, becomes the scene for a holiday market, where parishioners and passers-by can purchase religious mementos and gifts. Hand-made local tiles start at $10; there also are painted crosses ($10). If you miss the Sunday morning market, the Cathedral shop is open every weekday until 5pm. Rockin’ Queen 45 S. 6th Ave. 461-1076, This is the place to scoop up stretchy holiday frocks and other perfect pieces. It’s also a destination for gift shopping. Choose a pair of sapphire bead/ gold vermeil hoops designed locally by Gretchen Kenough ($156) or a certificate for fashion styling consultation ($60). Or buy a Roberta Oaks Bamboo/Cotton Holiday dress ($140). Tucson Herb Store 408 N. 4th Ave. 903-0038, There’s a kaleidoscopic selection of aromatic botanicals in this cozy spot, jammed with good stuff for your own health or gift bundling. Lavender or sage bundles start at $4; 100-percent beeswax votives from Colorado, in a variety of scents and colors, $3. Local gift bundles of teas start at $12. Pop-Cycle 422 N. 4th Ave. 622-3297, In the market for upcycled gifts? Of course you are! This boutique has kitsch galore; Chunky Chulada Bottle Cap Jewelry by Mellissa Brown (under $10); A Sharon Thwing-Fidget Vegan Taxidermy Mounted Deer ($348); Melo Dominguez-Day of the Dead Couple paintings ($40); 6 cut-bottle glasses in a recycled carrier by Anita Goodrich ($58). Remember the 4th Avenue Street Fair is on Dec. 9-10. PopCycle’s in-house lines, DDco Design and Monster Booty Threads, will have booths with special street fair pricing. Zoë Boutique 735 N. 4th Ave. 740-1201, It’s a contemporary parlor with the girly girl or the classic and it’s all yummy. Tasha Bundy’s delicate gold chain necklaces with little gems and charms ($44-$56) come with matching earrings ($28). There are also coin purses, pocket mirrors and greeting cards. Zoë’s annual party (December 17, 6 p.m.-10 p.m.) will feature not-your-typical holiday ornaments, which are reflective of local artist personal styles and can hang in your home even if it’s not the holiday season ($25 and under). M.A.S.T. 299 S. Park Ave. 720-0299, This hip spot is a showcase of local and international talent, and celebrates its two-year anniversary December 10. An edgy gifting pick: Zach Lihatsh is a featured artist in the Martha Stewart Gift Guide. Buy his forged iron bottle openers ($24).

Monster Booty Threads at PopCycle

Bamboo/Cotton Holiday dress at Rockin’ Queen

Handmade Moccasins at Mercado San Agustin

Forged iron bottle openers at M.A.S.T.

continued on page 28 December 2011 | 27


Indie Hotspots

Ben’s Bells at Bohemia

Froggy Tea-forOne at Yikes!

Kuumba Made, Inc. 410 E. Ft. Lowell Rd., 881-5550. Treat your senses to the fantastical botanicals created by this local producer, based in Tucson 19 years. Herbs are cultivated in gardens here in Southern Arizona and also sourced from wild-harvested plants globally. At the Kuumba-Made shop you’ll find spicy oils, home spa body butters and an award-winning herbal first aid travel kit ($18) for holiday gifting. You also can purchase delicate decanters for the botanicals. Ronald James Rocking Leather 3100 N. Stone Ave., #118, 884-7579. Ronald James has been producing elegant and engraved leatherwork in Tucson for more than a decade. You can get fun leather bookmarks designed with families of beetles or spiders ($8), or go for totes and bags ($40-80). Portfolios or journal covers, plain or engraved, are $150. Bohemia 2920 E. Broadway Blvd. 882-0800, Everyone knows this mainstay of the Tucson eclectic emporium scene. One give-back gift offered at the shop this year is for Ben’s Bells. There are four options: $10 necklaces, $12 ornaments, $20 bead strings and $25 mini bells. Bohemia donates most of each sale to this worthy non-profit. Proprietor Tana Kelch sources the best of the best in her veritable museum of local affordable crafts, so while you’re shopping you’ll see many other cool gifts in the $20 range, including stained glass, metal garden flowers and ceramic dishes. Yikes! 2930 E. Broadway Blvd. 320-5669, Ephemerafilled Yikes! stocks endearing toys that are pop culture and fun. There is an amazing book selection with the best pop-up book selection in town (and great pop culture books for the curious adult). Yikes! specializes in tin windups (like the High Wheel Robot Tin Windup, which has sparking action and moving gears, $32). It also has a wonderful selection of Japanese items (including the exceptionally cute Froggy Tea-for-One; this Japanese import includes teapot with lid, cup and tea infuser, $44). Bon Boutique 3022 E. Broadway Blvd. 795–2272, You’ll find many options at this unusual nook, beautifully curated by a great mother and daughter team. For $15 and under you’ll find French pocket mirrors or bow barrettes. There’s also Yellow Owl Press stamp sets (which come in a little canvas bag and have 2-3 stamps of a theme, like Paris). Also this month: Fragrant paperwhites, potted for the holidays. For mid-range gifts there’s John Derian bags ($62), Christy Long religious necklaces ($62 and up), or small live Christmas trees ($20-$40). Higher priced items, too, including hand-stitched Eliza Eddy pillows ($148).

Best of the Rest Roundup

Yellow Owl Press stamp sets at Bon Boutique

28 | December 2011

At Betty’s Blue Junk Shop, 262 S. Plumer Ave., 624-7147, you can expect the unconventional, like a strand of Grinch holiday lights ($7), a 1957 first aid kit from Canada ($30) or vintage pyrex blue covered casserole dish ($12). The desert is a diverse universe of plants and culture, and you can buy pieces of it for gifting at Native Seed Search, 3061 N. Campbell Ave. 6225591, Mesquite cutting boards from Tumacacori ($21), a Sonoran Desert revegetation mix filled with desert marigolds, creosote and globe mallow ($10) and a tin of locally made mole verde mix ($9). If western cowpoke tradition is your thing, the Tanque Verde Ranch at 14301 E. Speedway Blvd., 296-6275,, has plenty of ideas. Go see the horses, eat lunch in the rustic hall, shop and make a day of it. There are Apache Edgar Castillo earrings crafted with stones mined in Arizona ($15-$20). Arts magnets and horse or lizard pins are hand made by Liz Miller ($5), and there’s a cool selection of socks and sunglasses for kids and adults ($9). Crizmac, 1642 N. Alvernon Way, 323-8555,, has finely crafted and handmade folk art from Tucson and around the world. Cindy Cook-Keller does wearable art vests and jackets using unique international fabrics ($45 and up). Thayer Keller’s wood and metal wall hangings and ornaments are $10 and up. Holly Swangstu’s elegant, colorful hand-painted silk scarves are $46 and up. You’ll also find woodcarvings from San

continued on page 30

Woodcarvings from San Martin Tilcajete, Mexico, at Crizmac

Indie Hotspots

Martin Tilcajete, Mexico ($25), African beadwork ($9) and purses from Cambodia ($20). Another world showcase is the UN Center, 6242 E. Speedway Blvd., 881-7060,, with hundreds of small, authentic folk art gifts, all price ranges. You’ll also find another great winter gift find: hand-knitted woolen caps in the shape of strawberries, squashes, blueberries and other fruit ($16). Tucson Artists Colony, 204 W. Grant Rd. #120, 664-6326,, is a courtyard hideaway off busy Grant, with local crafters to explore. The Bello Barro Ceramic Arts Studio has small crosses, birds, hearts and functional dinnerware ($6-$250) and assortment of bowls, mugs, plates, pitchers, fruit bowls in varied colors of white, purple, teal and earth tones ($5- $50). Walk into the courtyard to find Brenda Semanick’s studio: She has Tucson Chamber Music Festival poster prints ($25) and boxed sets of art cards ($15). One more courtyard for you is Many Hands, 3054 N. 1st Ave., 6031003. It has a Holiday Artisans Market at Blue Raven Gallery & Gifts,, through January 14. See a variety of unique gourd ornaments, jewelry items and more by local artists. While you’re at the Many Hands courtyard, walk over to Howard’s Handwerk Haus, run by Esther for the past 10 years. Chances are you’ll find Esther spinning her wool on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. If you are interested in quilts, she has one-of-a-kinds (a twin-sized in variety of blue shirting material is $100). Folded-star hand-quilted pot holders and dish mats made by local quilters are beautiful holiday gifts ($6.95). At DECO, 2612 E. Broadway Blvd., 319-0888,, you’ll find Dirk Arnold refrigerator magnets of local and historical signage ($12), Murano glass pendants strung on crocheted bead ropes ($79), and a neon steam-on vintage coffee pot by Jude Cook ($165), among other unique finds. The ladies of Church of Satin, 604 N. 4th Ave., 867-8907, Facebook. com/churchofsatin, have hand-crocheted caps for winter coziness ($29) and an assortment of handmade jewelry, purses and fashion accessories from Tucson and other Arizona designers ($15 and up). If you haven’t explored the art of blown glass, check out lovely glass ornaments ($20) or small vases ($50) from Sonoran Glass, 633 W. 18th St., 884-7814,; also visit Philabaum Glass Gallery & Studio, 711 S. 6th Ave., 884-7404,, during its annual holiday studio sale December 1-3, which also features glass-blowing demonstrations. WomenKraft, 388 S. Stone Ave., 629-9976,, is showcasing its Holiday Bazaar through December 20. Every piece is under $100, including 100% recycled shadow boxes, cholla light art branches, feathered jewelry and Christmas ornaments – all locally made. It’s all about finest quality letterpress at Chaux Press, 411 N. 7th Ave. #103, 620-1626, You won’t find big market best sellers here. Instead, there are very special handmade books with fine art paper, lovingly bound, $75 and up. Or pick up a chapbook (published in small editions and mixing desktop publishing technologies with hand bookbinding practices), $9 and up. Two centers of note, where you can browse our local nature, arts and culture while shopping: Tucson Botanical Gardens, 2150 N. Alvernon Way, 326-9686,, has ornaments and wall hangings by a local company with home décor designs inspired by our Sonoran Desert (ornaments, $11). There’s also a Souvenir Treat Tin – chocolate covered pecans or Gummy Rocks and Rattlesnakes ($14). At Tohono Chul Park, 7366 Paseo del Norte, 742-6455,, there are three award-winning shops with merchandise as diverse as Native American jewelry, locally-crafted javelina salt-and-pepper shakers ($12) and contemporary, hand-painted pot pottery that you can fill with unusual lowwater use plants and cacti. Prices vary.

Handmade poetry books at Chax Press

Endangered Architecture refrigerator magnets at DECO

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Collectible buttons at Social Science Modern Vintage

Carly Quinn designed tiles at Crafted/Arts Marketplace

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Indie Hotspots

Chocolate at Trail Dust Town!

Trail Dust Town, 6541 E. Tanque Verde Rd. 886-9203, TrailDustTown. com, is more than just a tourist attraction. This complex houses The Chocolate Depot, which has heart-racing edible dense dark and light chocolates to satisfy your cocoa and caffeine fixes. For $2, get sticks of fine Belgian chocolate in cowboy horseshoe or cactus shapes. There’s also handrolled chipotle truffle pieces ($1.50). All chocolate is handmade in small batches and will be gift-boxed. The Withers’ Ranch, 4010 W. Palo Seco, 572-3758,, is one of those rare places where you can purchase finely-crafted felted bags and scarves and meet the sheep or alpaca who supplied the fibers. Kathy Withers spins the yarns she uses in her products and will give you a tour if you call ahead for an appointment. Prices for handcrafted bags, scarves and shawls start at $75. Monterey Court/Miracle Marketplace 505 W. Miracle Mile, 582-0514, The restoration of this vintage motor court collection of studios, galleries, a café and arts gazebo is still a work in progress, but several of the 13 shops will be open in December with an eclectic mix of Tucson creativity. One of note open now: urban boutique Dragon’s Spark, featuring fair labor, vintage, resale and handmade fashions for individuals and home. A fun gift for teens and young adults: hand-drawn ink art on plastic sealed-with-resin pendants in a variety of colorful designs ($15). Also check out fashion-distinctive knitted cowls or jersey scarves in shades of brown and off-whites by Amy Som ($15). Old Town Artisans 201 N. Court Ave. 623-6024, OldTownArtisans. com. Be prepared to unearth fabulously diverse and festive presents in the eclectic collection of stores housed in this historic courtyard. The fair trade focus at Patchouli Blue will make you smile. Here you’ll find local fine tailoring and baskets made by traditional artisans of the Iskash*taa Refugee Harvesting Network, a grass-roots organization that helps in rebuilding lives of refugees from Bhutan, Burma, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo. Buy purses and mats from Burundi artists ($20 and up) or baskets by Burundi weavers. Patchouli Blue also has little recycled glass earrings by Global Mamas from Ghana, West Africa ($14). You will feel good when making these purchases. The locale also includes the Old Town Pot Shop, among others, along with La Cocina Restaurant. Social Science Modern Vintage 43 S. 6th Ave. Find home décor gifts in this retro stylish shop, like a Silvertone Solid State AM Radio in avocado green. For stocking stuffers there’s the retro pinback button wall, with its assortment of quirky and collectible buttons from the 1950s through the 1980s, $2 each. Crafted/Arts Marketplace 403 N. 6th Ave. 882-3988, ArtsMarketplace. org. There’s an eclectic approach to modern crafting with a great selection, all organized, arrestingly, alongside retro pieces. There’s a holiday crafts market December 3-4, with locally-crafted items from the sale available in shop throughout December. Variety includes colorful hand-painted tiles by Carly Quinn ($24). Turquoise Skies 4410 S. Mission Rd. 578-1673, This gem sits on dusty Mission Road with its weathered signs about traditionally handmade Pueblo pottery and local curiosities. It’s full of old pawn jewelry ($100 and up) and valuable Native American baskets. A junk store adjoining the local artisan treasures is full of interesting pieces, like the vintage 1950s Americano Mexican poker playing cards, colorful and beautifully boxed, a perfect stocking stuffer ($2). If that’s sold when you visit, look for other odd surprises. Mission San Xavier del Bac 1950 W. San Xavier Rd. 294-2624, Our iconic mission is certainly an historic destination, but have you visited its gift shop? For the lover of mission churches on your list, gather local vigil lights ($5), O’odham bowls ($15) made on the reservation and a book by a local author Bernard L. Fontana, “Biography of a Desert Church” ($5), and create a White Dove of the Desert gift basket. Go on a weekend and enjoy fry bread baking under a Native American watto out in the parking lot. Don’t forget your independent book and record stores – too many to mention in this feature. Whatever you’re in the market for, you’ll find it at an indie. Go local this holiday season! n

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Where We Live: El Presidio by Phoenix Michael To visit downtown’s El Presidio neighborhood is to discover that this is, in fact, where it all began. We needn’t consult musty tomes to explore El Presidio’s storied history since here it has been preserved, cherished and carried into the present day. From West 6th Street to West Alameda Street and North Stone Avenue to North Granada Avenue, Tucson’s oldest neighborhood has aged gracefully. Familiarize yourself with its many offerings! As one of the nation’s oldest continually inhabited sites, it stands to reason that the El Presidio Historic District is home to the oldest continuously family owned Mexican restaurant in the United States. The venerable El Charro Café, 311 N. Court Ave., receives rave reviews (Gourmet Magazine, USA Today) with good cause. Native corn, the signature Pico de Charro and uniquely flavorful sauces such as prickly pear infused BBQ continue to delight diners after nearly 90 years in operation. El Charro’s La Tiendita gift shop will also please your out-oftown visitors. Call 622-1922 or see to plan a feast of fiesta-size proportions. Even among revitalized downtown’s many success stories, Old Town Artisans stands out. This cluster of shops at 201 N. Court Ave. is housed within adobe walls constructed in the 1850s. Native American paintings, pottery and jewelry beg to be taken home from La Zia while world imports await at Tolteca Tlacuilo. Enjoy eclectic edibles at La Cocina Restaurant & Cantina’s tranquil courtyard where a small grocery,

Tu Cocina, also opened last month. Weekly events at La Cocina include Greg Morton’s bluegrass happy hour Fridays 6-10 p.m., jazz with Elephant Head Wednesdays 6-8:30 p.m. and DJ Herm’s Dance! Dance! Dance! party Saturdays 10 p.m.-2 a.m. Find directions and details at and A stroll through Presidio San Agustín del Tucson at 133 W. Washington St. is an enjoyably educational eye-opener. This meticulously recreated Spanish fort is built directly upon its original 1775 location and includes a mural by Bill Singleton & Sons depicting early Presidio life. “I’ve always loved history,” Tucson Presidio Trust docent Jean Baxter says as we gaze upon a centuries-old open Hohokam pit house and are struck by the impact of humanity’s rapid evolution. Male volunteers are sought to portray 18th century soldiers in the Presidio’s regularlyoccurring Living History Days; call Rick Collins at 837-8119 if interested. On December 17 from 6-9 p.m., a luminaria festival featuring Spanish colonial food, storytelling and period craft making will be held. Learn more at No El Presidio tour would be complete without an afternoon at The Tucson Museum of Art, 140 N. Main Ave. Current exhibitions such as “Han and Beyond - The Renaissance of China: The James Conley Collection” and “Art of Latin America” are well worth the price of admission. Wednesday, December 7 at 1:30 p.m., an Art Talk series presents “The Art and Architecture

of Mission San Xavier Del Bac” in the Education Center Auditorium; TMA’s Museum Store carries many excellent gift items and is even open on Christmas Eve! has hours, parking tips and youth program information. Additional El Presidio attractions include the tasty bagel dogs of Arizona Bagel & Deli at 177 N. Church Ave., the row of mouthwatering mansions along North Main Avenue which pioneer folk once dubbed Snob Hollow, and the Alene Dunlop Smith Garden at 312 N. Granada Ave. A historic block consisting of the J. Knox Corbett House, La Casa Cordova, the Edward Nye Fish House, the Romero House and the Stevens/ Duffield House makes for a pleasant self-guided walking tour while El Presidio Bed & Breakfast Inn at 297 N. Main Ave. takes care of all guests. In 2012, El Presidio Historic District continues to celebrate its heritage with the opening of Centennial Park at 198 N. Main Ave. Here, on what was once the well-traveled El Camino Real (The King’s Highway), a pocket park will commemorate 100 years of Arizona statehood. This officially designated Arizona Centennial Legacy Project will transform a vacant lot into a meaningful monument. Feeling supportive? Buy a brick or otherwise get involved at and Forward, then! Let our future be informed by our most valuable resource: our past. n

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Roller Derby Gives Back by Kelly Lewis The women of the Tucson Roller Derby do a lot of pushing and shoving on the track, and they are just as passionate off the track for local charities, and their efforts are helping nonprofits when they need it most. Each month, the Tucson Roller Derby League selects one or two charities for benefit, setting up tables at their games where participants and game-viewers can donate items. December’s charities are Toys for Tots and the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, and the league is hopeful that they will collect a sizeable contribution.

Notes from a Plant Freak by Jared R. McKinley

Seasonal Guidelines

Yogive! A new class gives the benefits of yoga back to India

Hopefully by now you are in the habit of covering and protecting those frost tender plants. Even a plant that is supposed to be frost hardy can be rendered tender if newly planted, or unusually exposed, like planted in a container. Also avoid feeding most plants during this time; new growth is much more prone to frost damage. While most of the landscape is slowing down, the vegetable garden is very active; always plant in succession so you always have great vegetables to choose from. All winter long, you can keep planting seeds of root vegetables, cilantro, parsley, dill, fennel, peas, greens (lettuces and cabbages), and you can keep putting out transplants of cauliflower and broccoli. Bear in mind that you may have to cover crops on the coldest nights. Consider making a frame covered in frost cloth: make it high enough to cover the tallest stuff, and put those frames over plants to ward off icy climes. Weigh them down so they don’t go sailing away. Just remember to take off those covers during the day. Vegetable gardens want full sun, especially in the winter.

by Emily Gindlesparger

photo: Ben Newman

photo: Greg Starr

The Bhatti Mines School outside of New Delhi, India is a refuge. The community in Bhatti Mines—destitute since the mines closed—is so overcome with poverty that child labor is common. But the Bhatti Mines School gives children an alternative, offering an education, meals, and vocational training to over 200 students a year. “I had a very specific need, through Yoga Oasis, to make an offering to children in need in some way,” says owner Darren Rhodes, and he found it in the Amala Foundation, an amazing nonprofit out of Austin, Texas, that is partnered with the Bhatti Mines School. Now with new class called Yogive!, 100% of its proceeds go to the Bhatti Mines School. The class is taught alternately by Rhodes and Rachel King, with live kirtan music by the clearvoiced Bronwin Rhodes.

“We will have a table set up at our game (this month) and people can come in and bring donations for each charity,” said Brandy Holden of the Tucson Roller Derby. “Last year, our table for Toys for Tots was overflowing with toys, and because this month is a big time for eating, we decided to give to those who don’t get to have that experience.” Jack Parris of the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona said they need all the help they can get this year. “We need all we can do because demand is up tremendously this year, and our food donations are down significantly,” Parris said. The Tucson Roller Derby game on Dec. 17 is at Bookman’s Event Center, 5120 S. Julian Dr. Tickets are $10 pre-sale or $15 at the door. Buy a pre-sale ticket from any skater, or at Red Garter Bar & Grill, 3143 E. Speedway Blvd., Surly Wench Pub, 424 N. 4th Ave. or PopCycle, 422 N. 4th Ave. n

“Now that it exists, it feels like an essential aspect of the studio that I didn’t even know was missing until it was there,” Darren says. “Of course you should have this. Some sort of outreach program is part and parcel about what all this is about.” $125 a month puts 12 kids through school a year; the class is already generating about that much in a week. Rhodes plans to expand the single class to 3 or 4 a week by next year, and he hopes the idea of Yogive! will catch on to other studios across the country, to use the soul-searching efforts of yoga to serve. n

Species of Interest

Find out more about TRD league and a schedule of games at To make a donation to the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona or Toys for Tots, visit or

Yogive! is offered every Saturday, 3:30 p.m.4:45 p.m. Taught alternately by Darren Rhodes and Rachel King, with live music by Bronwin Rhodes at Yoga Oasis Central, 2631 N. Campbell Ave. 322-6142,

You can find this variety at B & B Cactus Farm (11550 E. Speedway Blvd., 721-4687, and at Bach’s Cactus Nursery (8602 N. Thornydale Rd., 744-3333,

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Agave parryi var. truncata

Agave parryi var. truncate – Artichoke agave This is one of the most handsome agave species, resembling large artichokes. Plants are compact, relatively problem-free, and frost hardy in Tucson. They lend themselves well to container culture or in landscapes. Plants can be prone to javelinas, especially in dry years when there isn’t a lot else for them to eat. Growth forms best in full sun and combine well with other native shrubs and wildflowers. They are moderately slow growing and prefer welldrained soils. n

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Image courtesy City of Tucson


(Editor’s Note: This is the first in a monthly series on the modern streetcar.)

The Streetcar’s Zoning Zig Zag by Carli Brosseau In 2009, city officials estimated the modern streetcar they proposed would create almost 1,500 permanent jobs. They talked up the development boom they expect along the route, rising property values, a growing customer base for downtown businesses and decreased congestion. But the streetcar, now slated to begin running in early 2013, can have few of those effects without a halo of changing regulations and incentives to adapt to the surrounding activity. The rails and cars themselves guarantee little. Those changes are fraught with some controversy in a city that has historically developed in a pattern more typical of a suburban area than a densely populated urban one. Although a trolley is mentioned in university-area neighborhood plans as far back as the 1980s, it has been only since 2006, when the Downtown Infill Incentive District was announced, that the city government has really begun making modifications that would allow and encourage the kind of development that would result in the revitalization now trumpeted. The conflicting visions of what Tucson is and should be are about to be aired anew, and officials are hoping that they’re out ahead of some of the flashpoints. The first draft plan for changing development rules along a section of the streetcar route is now on the table. It’s a first run at tackling issues of increasing density and building height, streetscape appeal and parking rules, as well as thorny questions about historical preservation. Instead of a plan that emphasizes uses, typically the case for zoning, the new proposal highlights form— how buildings will look and interact with the

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streetscape. The plan now released for public feedback— called the Downtown Links Urban Overlay District—is for the area surrounding the transit corridor connecting Barraza-Aviation Parkway and Interstate 10. The areas affected are the Warehouse district, Fourth Avenue and Iron Horse Neighborhood. The overlay is intended to replace current area zoning, but property owners will be given a choice. They can work under the new parameters, which offer a certain degree of flexibility on items such as parking, or under the old zoning rules, or they could pursue a rezoning. Public hearings are expected in January or February, but the response so far seems to be trending positive. Chris Gans, president of the West University Neighborhood Association, has been monitoring the draft plan and the response as indicators of what his neighborhood might expect. He’s heartened by provisions intended to discourage demolition of historic buildings and to give neighborhoods a say. West University Neighborhood is in the midst of confronting those issues in possible revisions to the neighborhood plan. The change would allow some development taller than 40 feet, the current maximum, in a portion of neighborhood called the “transition zone,” between Speedway Boulevard and Sixth Street and Park and Euclid Avenues, because the streetcar will stop twice in the neighborhood. The City Council is expected to hear the proposed changes this month. Gans emphasized that neither he nor his neighborhood association are opposed to development, but rather they seek quality develop-

ment that prioritizes ease for pedestrians and bicyclists, encourages access to services and discourages tearing historical buildings down. “I think it’s essential to have really good process, really good communication, good relationships, and it’s often lacking,” he said. He’s concerned enough to have enlisted Tom Warne, a development consultant who has worked with the neighborhood on past projects, to act as a liaison with the city and other groups with a stake in how area development evolves. There is action toward resolution, but there is still no comprehensive plan. Along parts of the proposed route from the Mercado District on West Congress Street through downtown to University Medical Center on North Campbell Avenue, there are areas where neighborhood plans and current zoning would seem to conspire against the city’s stated goals. Jim Mazzocco, the planning administrator overseeing the streetcar project, said that the city and Pima Association of Governments intend to hire a consultant early next year to do a land use plan along the entire streetcar line, examining “gaps and barriers” to the envisioned outcomes. That would be the first time the route and rules dictating development patterns along it has been looked at holistically. “We’re learning as we go here,” Mazzocco said. n To review the draft Downtown Links Area Plan and to find out more information, go to Updates about the modern streetcar are at

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photos: Rusty Ramirez

Café a la C’art’s Appetizing Developments



by Gerald M. Gay After 13 years of serving gourmet cuisine in close quarters, Café a la C’art has hit a growth spurt. The restaurant has increased in size over the last two months, moving from a 95-seat capacity – about 45 inside and 50 on the patio – to more than 140 seats, by expanding into former gallery space held by its landlords, the Tucson Museum of Art. The café’s original dining room now leads to a hallway with high ceilings, which branches off into five more rooms, each with its own atmosphere and plenty of space to sit and relax. There’s even a brand new entrance leading out to North Main Avenue, in addition to the restaurant’s original museum courtyard entrance, giving the popular spot more exposure to casual passers-by.  That’s good news for downtown regulars who in years past, have battled long lines and jam-packed lunch rushes for a taste of the cafe’s premium sandwiches, salads and desserts.  “We’ve always been hampered by our size,” said Mark Jorbin, who runs the restaurant with his mom, Judith Michelet. “During the summer months, people don’t want to sit outside. Many of our guests are on a time constraint for lunch. They’d see our crowd and we’d see them walk away. We are excited to have this.” The new rooms complement the changes that have already taken place at the restaurant.  Patrons saw one of the first additions, a new eating area toward the north end of the café, more than a year ago. A breakfast service was also added, with an extensive, recently-revamped menu that includes frittatas, pancakes and specialty burritos. The patio was spruced up with regular live music and a wrap-around springtime mosaic, by local artist Kathy Spain. “Kathy was a dynamo,” Jorbin said. “She did all the work herself, hauled all the material. Her inspiration was ‘Monet’s Garden.’ It has made such a difference.” By year’s end, Jorbin and Michelet plan on having breakfast and lunch hours on weekends, something Café a la C’art has never tried. “Downtown has historically closed up shop on weekends,” Jorbin said. “That has been changing. We are seeing so much more traffic down here on Saturdays and Sundays, particularly in the evenings.” A few months after that, once their liquor license kicks in, they are taking another giant leap; this time into dinner service. Jorbin said the dinner menu details are still being worked out, but fans of the restaurant will find many of its sandwich and salad options available in the evening, as well as an extensive selection of appetizers and specialty, upscale entrees. “Our goal is to keep most lunches and dinners at around $10 a plate or under,” Jorbin added. “We want to put out the best food we can, but still make it affordable for guests. I don‘t think food has to be expensive to be good.” Jorbin hopes the changes will make the restaurant more accessible and will help energize a section of downtown that is generally quieter in the evenings; all while keeping the same friendly attitude and level of quality that has made the café so popular over the years. “We have been very successful in connecting with our guests and we want to hang onto that,” he said. n Café a la C’art is located at 150 N. Main Ave. Find out more at or by calling 628-8533.

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photo: Kelly Lewis


Dining Out by Kelly Lewis

Shop But Don’t Drop by V. K. Embee This holiday season, shop until you drop… into a great happy hour! Wherever you find that perfect gift, there’s revitalizing food and drink nearby. Near Broadway Boulevard and Country Club Road, eclectic and eco-friendly gifts abound at DECO, 2612 E. Broadway Blvd., and Bohemia, 2920 E. Broadway Blvd. Fill someone’s life with color and whimsy with gifts from Zocalo Fine Colonial Furniture (3016 E. Broadway Blvd.), Yikes (2930 E. Broadway Blvd.), and Picánte Designs at 2932 E. Broadway Blvd. Stylish yet sturdy shoes from Hirsh’s, 2934 E. Broadway Blvd., will keep your shoppin’ feet a-hoppin’. Just a few steps away you’ll find the newly relocated Sushi Garden. Happy hour is Sunday-Thursday, 4 p.m.-7 p.m. and Friday-Saturday, 10 p.m. to close. A large selection of sake is available, in 4- to 24-ounce portions. Sake bombs are $4. Draft pints are $2-$3.50. Wine is $1 off a glass and $3 off a bottle. Cocktails are $2 off. Sushi lovers will revel in the value and variety. Orders of sushi rolls ($2-$6.50) include 5-8 pieces, and cooked and vegetarian options are available. For a wide palette of texture and flavor, try the dazzling Las Vegas Roll ($6.50), a tempura-fried roll of salmon, crab, masago, cream cheese and avocado, drizzled with eel sauce. The Alaskan Roll ($4) features salmon, avocado, and cucumber in a creamy sauce. California Roll is $3. If you don’t eat sushi, don’t despair. Enjoy healthy and crunchy edamame ($1), tender juicy chicken yakitori ($3.50), or fluffy and flavorful shrimp and vegetable tempura ($5). The atmosphere is bright, vibrant and contemporary, with a beautiful illuminated stone bar. Sushi Garden is at 3048 E. Broadway Blvd. Find out more at, 326-4700. If your mood is more Mexican, go west to El Parador. Beyond the tiled tropical garden setting, you will find happy hour in the cantina MondayFriday, 4 p.m.-7 p.m. Beer, drafts, wells, and house margaritas are $1 off, and appetizers are ½ off. Guacamole with chips is $2.50. For $4, try the cheese crisp, taquitos or mini chimis. Or have the Sonoran shrimp cocktail ($5), four jumbo prawns in house Mazatlan sauce. Beautiful stained glass with garden motifs provides warm illumination for the large booths and wooden tables. El Parador is at 2744 E. Broadway Blvd., online at, or call 881-2744. n

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It’s not easy being the new kid on the block, but Union Public House, 4340 N. Campbell Ave., Suite 103, is placing its stamp on the Tucson gastropub scene with creative cuisine, two rockin’ “social” hours per day, and a stainless steel bar with 30 beers and 16 draft wines on tap. The restaurant opened a mere month ago, so to get a proper review, we visited three times. On our first visit, we were floored. The ambiance was relaxed but sophisticated, and the food was incredible—particularly the shrimp and grits ($11), made with prosciutto, herb chevre and fried green tomatoes, in which the grits were perfectly cooked and not at all gritty. The next time, however, was a mixed bag. Dinner rush is something the team at Union is still working on managing, and our food took quite a long time to arrive. When it did, we weren’t as impressed. The Union Burger ($11) came with fries that were almost too hard to eat, and that, combined with the long wait, soured the experience. But, we gave it another go, this time ordering a variety of items including the “Lollipop” Pork Chop ($6), a small plate of bone-in pork drumettes with maple-bacon gravy. We were wowed. The pork chops were the perfect combination of savory and sweet, and by the time lunch came, we were hungry for more. I ordered the Chicken Pot Pie ($12.50), and my lunch-mate Billie ordered the Potato Dumplings ($12), a plate of house-made potato gnocchi with duck confit and roasted mushrooms. The gnocchi were soft and chewy, and when cooked with burnt sage butter and the duck confit, the entire plate was rich and flavorful. The pot pie, though, is where Union has made their mark. The team in the kitchen, led by executive chef Jack Tate, has managed to create a pot pie that doesn’t ooze everywhere when you cut into it, and still has all of the comfort-food elements that you’d want in a pot pie: potatoes, bacon and peas, all in a creamy base. It’s a mini food heaven. The other thing we like about Union is their made-from-scratch kitchen, in which just about everything on the menu is—you guessed it—made from scratch. “We bake all of our breads, all of the dough for our pizzas, all of the buns for our burgers,” said Grant Kreuger, co-owner. “We try to produce most of our stuff in house, but we do source some fruits and vegetables from the Farmer’s Market in St. Philip’s Plaza and it’s nice to have that option.” While it’s clear the team at Union is still working out some of the kinks in their first month of business, it’s safe to say that they’ve got all the elements of the kind of restaurant we’ll visit again: great service, great food and a great bar. Social hour and reverse social hour run every day from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. to close and feature $3, $4, $5 and $6 specials. n Check out their menu and more details at

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GSol’s Evolving Musical Directions

photo: Audrey A. Fitzsimmons

by Gerald M. Gay Members of the local band GSol see every gig as an opportunity to polish and explore. Three of the group’s four members live in Tucson. Its fourth, guitarist, vocalist and chief songwriter, Alessandro Circiello, resides in Oakland.  The distance makes it challenging, especially when Circiello is constantly creating new material that can‘t be fleshed out until he arrives. But that same distance gives GSol an energy and rawness during live sets that you might not find with other local outfits, says bassist Neil Diamente. “(Alex) keeps us on our toes,” he added. “When he shows up, he’s like, ‘Let’s try this’ or ‘Let’s do that’ right away. I find that I’m learning faster, getting better.” GSol in its current form, a band that incorporates smooth Latin, jazz and soul sounds into its music, is still new to Tucson. Yet its lineup –  Circiello, Diamente, Miguel Bazemore on percussion and Anton Shekerjiev on lead guitar –  has already played its fair share of local venues and fests, including this year’s Tucson Meet Yourself, since taking shape in May.  Diamente attributes GSol’s quick growth, in part to the history that he and Circiello have together. They met in Oakland a decade ago and became fast friends and collaborators, hitting open mics with spoken word poetry and original music. “I wrote the poems and he was writing songs,” Diamente said. “I would accompany him sometimes with Spanish clay drums, shakers or finger snaps. People dug it.” The two eventually moved onto careers and families and Diamente left Oakland, first for Chicago and then Tucson.  It wasn’t until 2008, when Diamente decided to take up bass guitar, that they considered reuniting on a musical level, planting the seeds for the band’s current incarnation. Shekerjiev and Bazemore joined GSol ear-

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lier this year. Shekerjiev is best known for his involvement with Balkan Spirit and Bazemore is a longtime session musician whose resume includes work with Quincy Jones, Ray Charles, Carlos Santana, Randy Travis and Elton John. Bazemore’s involvement with GSol began with a chance encounter at Sky Bar in May, when Bazemore, on a whim, sat in with his bongos on the band’s set. The connection was instant. “(Bazemore) has that experience that brings an extra fire to our music,” Diamente said. “It is fascinating to me that he was drawn to what we do.” Diamente says GSol is still finding its sound. The group is influenced by so many different genres, that the music is constantly changing and taking new directions.  Diamente said Circiello comes in a week before GSol’s KXCI “Locals Only” gig on December 5. He looks forward to seeing what kind of musical surprises Circiello has in store. “You are constantly in a childlike phase (with Alex), where you are learning and figuring out these new sounds,” he said. “There is a real joy that comes with that.” n

GSol December Schedule Dec. Dec. Dec. Ave. Dec.

1, 3 p.m. at Mercado San Augustin, 100 S. Avenida del Convento. 1, 5 p.m. at Geronimo Plaza, 820 E. University Blvd. 4, 6 p.m. at the BICAS Art Auction. The Art Gallery, 1122 N. Stone 5, 9 p.m. on KXCI (91.3 FM) “Locals Only” radio show

Visit for more information.



photo courtesy Combo Westside

Combo Westside perform at the TKMA holiday party.

Wishing You a Folky Christmas by Gerald M. Gay Only in Tucson does a holiday party mean kalimba-infused Christmas carols, traditional musical fare from Ireland and Appalachia and a 25-piece folk orchestra, complete with mandolins, violins, dulcimer and banjo players. The Tucson Kitchen Musicians Association will feature all that and more when it returns with its annual holiday party at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 4831 E. 22nd St, December 17. Admission to the concert is a $10 donation, with discounts available, and another $7 for a plate of food. Proceeds go toward the association and its annual folk festival, which takes place downtown in May. “The best musicians in Tucson come out for this event,” said Ron Pandy, a longtime local player and member of the attending String Bean Folk Orchestra, about the holiday gathering. Pandy has played and attended the holiday parties for more than two decades and has served as the contact and coordinator for the event for the last four years. The schedule has yet to be finalized, he said, but it’s already brimming over with familiar Tucson faces. Dave Firestine and Claire Jamieson Zucker, known best for their work with the traditional Celtic band, Round the House, will get toes tapping as the acoustic duo, Púca. Master kalimba player Mark Holdaway has a spot reserved for some thumb piano holiday tunes, and will also serve as musical accompaniment for the vocal group, WomanSong. Combo Westside will roll out its own brand of Bossa Nova groove music, but not before the folk orchestra presents a series of classic holiday melodies. “Our hit song is that Chipmunk Christmas song,” Pandy said. “We do other, more complex classics, like ‘Joy to the World,’ but the Chipmunk song is always most popular because it is such a novelty.” n The doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the music and dinner begin at 6 p.m. For more information, visit

December 2011 | 43



Alisha Peru Band performs the Great Cover Up on Dec. 18.

photo: Sandra Shaw-Johnson

Tucson’s Magnanimous Musicians by Jamie Manser The U.S. Congress ‘supercommittee’ could learn a thing or two about collaborative efforts. Locally, the Great Cover Up fundraiser has its own supercommittee, which is actually producing results. Granted, they don’t have to deal with trillions of dollars, but they have had to brainstorm on how best to bring together a three-day, three-venue event (Dec. 15-17) with over 60 bands for the 14th annual Great Cover Up. Their task is a bit more inspired, and definitely less stressful. But still, the logistics of honoring the responses of local bands who are freely giving their time to cover a group/musician of their choosing, all in support of local charity Tucson Artists and Musicians Health Care Alliance (TAMHA), is something to be lauded. The Great Cover Up team includes: Tucson Weekly’s Music Editor Stephen Seigel (who inspired the whole event 14 years ago), Rialto Theatre’s Entertainment Booker Curtis McCrary, Rialto’s Marketing/Designer man Ryan Trayte, Dan Hernandez and David Slutes from Hotel Congress, Plush’s Kris Kerry and the event’s band coordinator, Mel Mason. This year, the benefit adds a daytime schedule on Saturday, Dec. 17 –

44 | December 2011

with groups performing at Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St., and Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress St. – starting at 12:30 p.m. “We had a record number of bands request to be a part of the event,” Mason said, “and we decided to find a solution to such a positive problem.” “It allows us to add fifty percent more bands,” Slutes said, who is also a board member of TAMHA. “Having 60 plus bands be a part of this is just incredible.” It is cool to see music scene newbies on the schedule, such as 16-yearold Alisha Peru. Peru, a high school junior with incredible vocal chops (not to mention her acumen on piano/keys), was a top six finalist in the 2010 and 2011 Arizona Daily Star’s Battle of the Bands. Her talent has garnered a spot on Rialto’s stage during the day on Dec. 17. She’s joined by guitarist David Anderson, bassist Cody Cowe and drummer Steven Mazon. Hear her original tunes at The event also hosts great mainstays. Al Perry, who played the first Great Cover Up in 1998 and most of them since the inaugural event, said he participates because: “I always like to play any benefit. It’s giving back

to the community and all that. The thing about the Cover Up is you need to do something that’s a stretch. If I were to just perform George Jones songs it would not be nearly as fun.” The man who used to be in punk bands, and is now known for country, covered Jay-Z one year. He will surprise audiences again this go-round. Jim Vancza, musician and co-owner of Che’s Lounge, who is performing with Spacefish, said Spacefish has played the event for about 11 years and remembers the early days when bands “took it way too serious. I think we were one of the first bands in costume. I really love this gig; it’s fun to see what everyone else is doing. It has been fun to see people embrace dressing up and having fun with it.” Some bands will be tongue-in-cheek, others more straight-up, but the whole goal is to garner funds for TAMHA, which has been the beneficiary since 2007. Its mission is to support uninsured artists by providing information about local healthcare and preventative care resources and by offering an emergency relief program to its members. Membership costs $5. TAMHA board member and Tucson Pima Arts Council’s Community Cultural Development Manager Leia Maahs said the benefit has raised approximately $6,000 each year for TAMHA from 2007 to 2010. The organization has awarded four recipients at total of $4,000 though its emergency relief program. “It’s been really neat to see the variety of awards,” Slutes said. “It shows how people can use us. We want them to use us.” TAMHA’s volunteer board has also been working with a variety of associates in the healthcare field and, “moving forward, we will be bringing on more and more partners,” Slutes elucidated. This month, The Medicine Shoppe, 305 S. Euclid Avenue #111, comes on board to offer discounted prescriptions to TAMHA members. Visit TAMHA’s site,, for its other resources. n The Great Cover Up kicks off at Plush, 340 E. 6th St., on Dec. 15 at 8 p.m. See the schedule here and visit for other details.



The Great Cover Up Schedule

Schedule is accurate as of press time. See for up-to-date information.

Plush, Thu 15 8pm: Pavement 8:30pm: The Everly Brothers 9pm: John Lennon 9:30pm: Steely Dan 10pm: David Bowie 10:30pm: Weezer 11pm: Os Mutantes 11:30pm: Mötley Crue 12am: The Descendents 12:30am: XTC 1am: Heaven at 27 1:30am: Bauhaus

Congress, Fri 16 7pm: Jethro Tull 7:30pm: King Crimson 8pm: Cracker/Camper Van Beethoven 8:30pm: Eric Clapton 9pm: Joe Satriani 9:30pm: Gin Blossoms 10pm: The Arcade Fire 10:30pm: The Zombies

11pm: TV Theme Songs 11:30pm: Aerosmith 12am: The Clash 12:30am: Bill Withers 1am: Mariah Carey 1:30am: Van Morrison

Congress, Sat 17 12:30pm: Wings 1pm: TBA 1:30pm: Pearl Jam 2pm: Cyndi Lauper 2:30pm: Radiohead 3pm: Joan Jett 3:30pm: The Cramps 4pm: Brain Damage Orchestra 4:30pm: Bob Marley 5pm: TBA

Rialto, Sat 17 12:30pm: Mississippi Fred McDowell 1pm: Grand Funk Railroad 1:30pm: Paul Simon

2pm: Evanescence2:30pm: Little Richard 3pm: Son House 3:30pm: Ryan Adams 4pm: L7 4:30pm: Madonna 5pm: Tom Petty

Rialto, Sat 17 7pm: ABBA 7:30pm: Nirvana 8pm: Squeeze 8:30pm: Alice in Chains 9pm: Bukowski 9:30pm: Traveling Wilburys 10pm: Wilco 10:30pm: A Perfect Circle 11pm: ELO 11:30pm: The Beach Boys 12am: Earth, Wind, and Fire 12:30am: New Orleans Funeral Procession 1am: Cheap Trick 1:30am: Black Eyed Peas

Bands Performing: 8 Minutes To Burn, Affirming the Consequent, Al Perry, Alisha Peru, American Android, Bikeage, Boreas, Cameron Hood, Christopher Stevens, Crosscut Saw, DJPJ, Doctor Dinosaur, Early Black, Emergency Broadcast System, Faster Than Light, Ferrodyne, Fish Karma, Flagrante Delicto, Funky Bonz, Gabe Sullivan, Gaza Strip, Genevieve & The LPs, Jeremy Michael Cashman, Jumper, Katie Haverly, Krista Khrome’s Feed, Leila Lopez, Logan Greene & The Players, Monster Pussy, Muddy Bug, Peaks, Planet Jam, Roman Barten-Sherman, Run-On Sunshine, Ryan Green, Seashell Radio/Modeens, Sergio Mendoza, Shaun Harris, Shrimp Chaperone, Smallvox, Some Of Them Are Old, Spacefish, Still Life Telescope, Sugar Stains, The Awkward Moments, The David Clark Band, The Distortionists, The Good Little Thieves, The Gunrunners, The Jons, The Lovely Days, The Monitors, The Swigs, The Tryst, The Wayback Machine, The Wyatts, WORM, Young Mothers

Tucson Photographers Shot Rock ‘n’ Roll Calendar In conjunction with Zócalo’s Tucson Shot Rock exhibit in October, local photographer Michael Hyatt put together a calendar of rock images, with proceeds (after covering costs) benefitting TAMHA. Hyatt said he wanted profits to go to TAMHA “because the group provides vital support for uninsured artists and musicians facing expensive healthcare issues and recovery.” He also said that if all 500 calendars are sold, it will raise $2000. Calendars will be available for sale at the Rialto during the event. Also visit for other locations or to purchase online.

December 2011 | 45



Max Goldschmid/Tucson Jazz Institute Maximum Exposure by Kitty Katt

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starts digging into the massive archive of jazz recordings and history. Multi-instrumentalists seem always drawn to composition. Max is no exception to the rule. He says he hopes after high school to continue studying to be a composer. If his musical phrasing on his freshman release tells us anything, he has a lot of ideas to express. We can also be glad that there is still an environment, a support network, where such talents are developed, especially in Tucson. The Tucson Jazz Institute, which is part of the Tucson Community Music School, continues to cultivate young aptitude. Max was part of the Tucson Jazz Institute ensemble that won the national 2010 Community Big Band Award in the Essentially Ellington competition adjudicated by Wynton Marsalis. Tucson isn’t exactly the first city you think of when you think of jazz, so this is quite an accomplishment. n photo: Steve Goldschmid

It’s a bit freaky to listen to an album that sounds like it spawns from a mature, seasoned jazz musician but is actually accomplished by a young, precocious kid. During a phone interview, Max Goldschmid comes across as a very collected, mature person. It is his musical ideas we are speaking of, which sound like they stem from someone who has been playing jazz for 30 years; the musician in question is in his senior year of high school. Maximum Exposure was assembled to present the wide range of Max Goldschmid’s abilities; not just in his phrasing, but in his instrumentation. While he says he feels most comfortable on trumpet, Goldschmid’s work on the soprano, alto and tenor saxophone, clarinet, bass clarinet or trombone won’t give that away. Goldschmid also presents three of his own compositions on this recording: “Omar’s Enlightenment,” “Maximum Exposure” and “Apex.” The only thing that might give away his development stage and age upon listening is his leanings toward pre-1960s jazz. Goldschmid is, however, a monster of a talent for a high school Max Goldschmid senior, and we can expect to see him develop into an amazing player. It’s surprising to learn that he doesn’t listen to a lot of jazz. If this is the product of not listening to a lot of jazz, it makes one wonder what the result will be once he really

Max Goldschmid performs with the Ellington Big Band on Sunday, December 11, 2pm at Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway Blvd. Tickets are $20, $15 for students and seniors. Maximum Exposure is available for purchase on the Tucson Community Music School web page,

December 2011 | 47


photo: Simone Turkington, courtesy of


KXCI’s Five Tucson’s community radio station, 91.3FM, features cuts from the following new albums in December. Also visit

Jimmy Cliff, Sacred Fire EP (Collective Sounds)

Neil Hamburger performs at Hotel Congress on Fri, Dec 9.

The reggae star’s first album in 7 years was produced with Rancid’s Tim Armstrong and includes covers of Bob Dylan, The Clash and plenty of Cliff originals that stay honest to his tradition of social justice songs.


The Lemonheads, Hotel Sessions (Hall of Records) Evan Dando and crew are back with a new recording with an old feel: the album features songs Dando wrote one night twenty years ago in a hotel in Australia. The Lemonheads hit Tucson on February 7 at Plush, 340 E. 6th St.

The Black Keys, El Camino (Nonesuch) Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney follow up their multiple-Grammy winner “Brothers” with this new collection of 11 songs recorded in Nashville and co-produced by Danger Mouse.

Amy Winehouse, Lioness: Hidden Treasures (Universal) The first of several expected posthumous releases from the British soul-pop singer, this disc features recordings going back as far as 9 years, with songs written by Amy as well as covers of Carole King and Leon Russell. Rare live recordings are included.

Various artists, This One’s For Him: A Tribute To Guy Clark (Icehouse Music) Guy gets the honorary treatment in time for his 70th birthday, with a 2-disc celebration of his songs by Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin, Willie Nelson, Patty Griffin, Steve Earle, Terri Hendrix and many others.

48 | December 2011

2ND SATURDAYS DOWNTOWN Congress Street, Sat 10: Scott Stage Avenue with MyTown Music, Desert Melodies, Dance for A Cause, Diane Van Deurzen & Lisa Otey; 5th Avenue Stage with Southwest Soul Circuit, street performances, more.

BOONDOCKS LOUNGE 3306 N. 1st Ave. 690-0991, Mondays: The Bryan Dean Trio Thursdays: Ed Dulucia Band Fridays: Neon Prophet Sat 3: Blues Benefit for Mary and Marty Kool with Tall Paul Band, Grams & Krieger with Nancy McCallion, Mitzi Cowell and The Valiants, Bryan Dean Trio, Sabra Faulk and Heather “Li’l Mama” Hardy, Tony and the Torpedoes, more Sun 4: Sabra Faulk CD Release Party hosted by

Heather Hardy Sat 10: Last Call Girls and The Maxwells Sun 11: Van Dykes Sun 18: Last Call Girls Sat 31: Amo and the Amosphere

CLUB CONGRESS 311 E. Congress St. 6228848, club Thu 1: World AIDS Day Fri 2: Charlie Faye with Sweet Ghost and Louise Le Hir Sun 4: The Fallen Stars Tue 6: Red Fang Wed 7: Scott Kelly (Neurosis), Jay Munly & Bob Wayne Fri 9: A(r)T Your Service (early); Later: Neil Hamburger Sat 10: Emily Dickinson 181th Birthday Bash Mon 12: Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin Fri 16: The Great Cover Up Wed 21: Rescue Lights EP CD Release Wed 28: Tucson Blues Hall of Fame Show Fri 30: New Year’s Eve EVE Extravaganza featuring The

Meat Puppets Sat 31: New Year’s Eve bash

FOX TUCSON THEATRE 17 W. Congress St. 624-1515, Sat 10: X Fri 16: Christmas with Aaron Neville Sat 17: Neshama Carlebach with Gospel Choir

THE HUT 305 N. 4th Ave. 623-3200, Thu 1: The El Camino Royales Fri 2: The Dolly Rots Sat 3: Sweet Nasty Band Sun 4: Outlaw Nation Thu 8: The ATARIS Fri 9: The Green Lady Killers Sat 10: Slick 46, Bricktop Fri 15: Hypercrush with DJ Scene

LA COCINA @ OLD TOWN ARTISANS 201 N. Court Ave. 623-6024, Wednesdays: Jazz with the Elephant Head Thursdays: Sefan George, Tom Walbank

Z photo courtesy Rhythm and Roots

photo courtesy Rialto Theatre

tunes Sergio Mendoza y La Orkestra’s Viva Mexico New Year at Rialto Theatre, Dec. 31.

Jo Wilkinson performs a farewell show for Rhythm and Roots on Dec 11.

Fridays: Greg Morton & Friends, Queer the Air! & Coming Out! A Queer Dance Party Saturdays: Dance! Dance! Dance! with DJ Herm Sundays: Elizabeth Blin

PLUSH 340 E. 6th St. 798-1298, Thu 1: Spiders Can Fly Fri 2: Race You There, Mergence Faster Than Light, Shrimp Chaperone Fri 9: Kinky Friedman, Hank Topless Sat 10: Sugar Stains, Love Mound Sun 11: Muddy Bug Wed 14: Nalm Amor Thu 15: The Great-Cover Up Mon 19: Yip Deceiver

RHYTHM & ROOTS Plaza Palamino, 2970 N. Swan Rd. 319-9966, RhythmandRoots. org Sat 3: Musical Swap Meet Sun 11: Jo Wilkinson & Grains of Sand- Farewell Party

RIALTO THEATRE 318 E. Congress St. 740-1000, Fri 2: SuperSuckers, The Blasters

Sat 3: PowHaus Presents Prophecy Thu 8: The Wailers and Lee Scratch Perry Fri 9: Cake Sat 10: Doug Stanhope & Friends Mon 12: Brian Setzer’s Rockabilly Riot Sat 17: The Great Cover-Up Sat 31: Sergio Mendoza Y La Orkesta’s Viva Mexico New Year’s Eve

SKY BAR 536 N. 4th Ave. 622-4300, Sat 3: Shaun Harris Sat 10: The Modeens, Standing Shadows

SOLAR CULTURE 31 E. Toole Ave. 884-0874, Sat 3: Cave Wed 7: David Bazan Thu 8: Ocote Soul Sounds Sat 10: High Desert Dreamscapes 2011

SURLY WENCH PUB 424 N. 4th Ave., 882-0009, Fri 2: Black Cherry Burlesque Tues 6: Artphag

Fri 9: Devil Doll, Moonlight Howlers Sat 10: Fineline Revisited Fri 16: Mission Creeps, Black Cherry Burlesque Sat 17: Club Sanctuary Fri 23: Anakim Sat 24: Church of Rock Revelations Sat 31: NYE


Other live music venues include:

135 S. 6th Ave. 623-7700,

198 W. Cushing St. 622-7984, Saturdays: Jazz



J BAR 3770 E. Sunrise Dr. 615-6100,

BLUEFIN 7053 N. Oracle Rd. 531-8500,


CASA VICENTE 375 S. Stone Ave. 884-5253, Tuesdays: Live Classical Guitar Wednesdays: Live Guitar Thursdays: Classical Guitar Friday and Saturdays: Flamenco Guitar and Performances

CHE’S LOUNGE 350 N. 4th Ave. 623-2088,

2564 E. Grant Rd. 323-7739,

LUNA BELLA 2970 N. Swan Rd.

NIMBUS BREWERY 3850 E. 44th St. 745-9175 & 6464 E. Tanque Verde Rd. 7331111,

VAUDEVILLE 110 E. Congress St. 6223535, vaudevilledowntowntucson

December 2011 | 49


photo: Matthew J. Nelson


Southern Arizona’s Buenos Aires by Matthew J. Nelson There is a place not far from Tucson that may be one of the quietest places on Earth. It’s a land where sacred mountains rise above a sea of knee-high grasses, and endangered species cling to life. It’s the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge. An obvious place to begin your adventure is Aguirre Lake, located just a few minutes northwest of the visitor center. Along the way you’ll notice two enclosures that provide a rare opportunity to see a few of Arizona’s endangered species – the Chiricahua leopard frog and masked bobwhite quail. Continue down the main road past the historic mesquite corral and soon you’ll arrive at Aguirre Lake. From the picnic table near the interpretive signs, follow the path west. There is a wildlife viewing blind built into the side of the lake, complete with a high-powered viewing scope. When the lake is full you’ll find a variety of waterfowl here. Even when it’s dry, this is a great place to watch grassland sparrows flitter among the auburncolored weeds. A complete loop around the man-made lake is less than one mile. After you’ve had your fill of the lake, head back toward the visitor center for a tour of the Pronghorn Loop. This 10-mile scenic road offers some of the most spectacular views available anywhere within the refuge, and begins just southwest of the visitor center. Although most people drive the loop, the best way to explore most of the 118,000 wild acres of the refuge is by bicycle or horse. The primitive roads require a front- or fullsuspension mountain bike, but even a hybrid bike with fat tires will be well-suited for this journey. Baboquivari Peak dominates the western skyline, and as the light changes throughout the day you’ll see features of the sacred peak that weren’t obvious in the early morning light. There is no mightier mountain

50 | December 2011

in this part of the world, and the Pronghorn Loop is an opportunity to admire the east face of Waw:Giwulk (the traditional O’odham name) in all its glory. As you ride along you’ll see grassland sparrows, meadowlarks and roadrunners in abundance. In the winter, red-tail hawks and Northern harriers are the most common raptors. It’s not uncommon to see golden eagles here, as they have nests in many of the surrounding mountain ranges. If you’re looking to pedal more than ten miles, there is no shortage of routes within the refuge. In fact, there are over 200 miles of roads that can be explored on bicycle, horseback or high-clearance vehicle. Pick up a refuge map for $1 at the visitor center and design your own adventure. Once you’ve made your first visit to the refuge, you’ll likely come back again and again. Passing through the golden fields of waving grasses is pure joy, and nowhere else will you feel the soft breeze caressing the land like here in the Buenos Aires.

Making Your Escape From Tucson, head west on Ajo Way (Hwy 86) to the town of Robles Junction/Three Points. Turn left/south on Hwy. 286 toward Sasabe. Just past milepost 8, turn left/east into the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge. The visitor center is located three miles down the road and is clearly marked.

Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge The refuge is open 24 hours a day for visitation, and the visitor center is open from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. seven days a week. For more information, call (520) 823-4251 or visit n

Zocalo Magazine - December 2011  

Zocalo Tucson Magazine is an independently published community magazine, showcasing Tucson's urban arts and culture.

Zocalo Magazine - December 2011  

Zocalo Tucson Magazine is an independently published community magazine, showcasing Tucson's urban arts and culture.