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Find a Fun Event in Tempe

Looking for fun things to do in Tempe and the Phoenix area? Plan your visit to coincide with one of the many annual festivals, concerts and sporting events found in Tempe. Hosting numerous exciting annual events, Tempe is the place to be. Browse the Tempe calendar of events to find year-round fun! And if you’re visiting this spring, visit our Spring Activities and Events vacation planning page! Tempe events offer a variety of experiences throughout the year:

  • Hit a vacation home run each spring at a Cactus League Spring Training game. Watch the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim play at their spring training home in Tempe at Tempe Diablo Stadium.

Whether it’s a Tempe music festival or a Tempe block party, this part of town is bustling all year long. From contemporary art exhibits to live music to Broadways shows, art festivals or sporting events, Tempe fits the bill.

Upcoming Events

The Gift: Selections from the Armstrong-Prior Archive

The Gift
December 2, 2014 - June 20, 2015

Location: Arizona State University Tempe Campus

Opening reception: Friday, Feb. 13, 2015 — Members and Alumni Preview 5:30–6:30 p.m. | Public Reception 6:30–8:30 p.m. John Armstrong and Joan Prior, through their firm Armstrong-Prior, Inc., have a rich history of working with local and international contemporary artists, donors, collectors, community organizations and museums. Armstrong-Prior is both a fine arts printing studio – with John’s proficient execution of various print media – and an art consulting organization – with Joan’s professional advisement and placement of art in prominent collections. After many years of print projects, Armstrong-Prior has built an impressive archive of contemporary prints and the ASU Art Museum is very fortunate to have received this archive as a gift from John and Joan. The Jules Heller Print Study Room at the ASU Art Museum houses a collection of more than 5,000 prints, ranging from a 14th century printed page to work by living artists. Generous gifts like the Armstrong-Prior archive have grown the collection to be a rich resource for ASU students and community members, and for exhibitions, loans and research. This exhibition is curated by Jean Makin, print collection manager, working with Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts student Tiernan Warner. Support for the exhibition is from the Evelyn Smith Exhibition Fund and members of the ASU Art Museum with additional generous support for printed gallery brochure from Kate and Hank Timmerman and The Cavanagh Law Firm. ASU Art Museum Hours  Tuesday: During academic semesters 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Summer hours: 11 a.m. – […]

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Architecture for Place: Glenn Murcutt

asu 244 x 163
December 12, 2014 - April 4, 2015

Location: ASU Art Museum

Opening reception: Friday, Dec. 12, 2014 — Public Reception 5–7 p.m.  Known for projects which ‘touch the earth lightly,” architect Glenn Murcutt begins his work with a keen observation of the natural conditions of each site. His distinctive residences and public buildings combine simple materials with elegant and refined forms and detailing. Yet they are primarily concerned with bringing the qualities of the surrounding world into the daily experience of the occupants. Since 1972, his practice has been based in Sydney, Australia, where he has developed a range of projects receiving international recognition, including the 2002 Pritzker Prize and the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal in 2009. The exhibition of drawings, renderings, photographs and models will be installed through an innovative collaboration between the ASU Art Museum, The Design School and the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects. A graduate design studio working with faculty and curators will research, design, fabricate and install the exhibition to reflect the principles of Murcutt’s work. Their working process will be open to the public. ASU Art Museum Hours Tuesday: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Wednesday–Saturday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. additional educator hours by appointment: Mondays and before 11 a.m. Tuesday–Thursday Closed: Sunday, Monday and holidays 

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Arizona Indigenous New Turned Wood by Philip and Matt Moulthrop

Arizona Indigenous at Desert Botanical Garden
February 6, 2015 - May 3, 2015

Location: Desert Botanical Garden

See new works by world-renowned artists Philip and Matt Moulthrop at Desert Botanical Garden. This exhibition features turned wood that highlights the beauty of trees and plants that can be found in Arizona. The Moulthrop family has produced beautiful contemporary turned wood pieces for three generations. Their work can be found in the permanent collections of famed institutions such as the Smithsonian Institute, the American Craft Museum of New York and the Carnegie Museum of Art. This exhibition is included in Garden admission.

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The Boy Who Loved Monsters and The Girl Who Loved Peas

The Boy Who Loved Monsters and the Girl Who Loved Peas
February 8, 2015 - March 8, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

See The Boy Who Loved Monsters and The Girl Who Loved Peas at the Tempe Center for the Arts February 8 – March 8, 2015. Evan hates peas! And to make matters worse, his baby sister Sue loves them. When forced to remain at the table until his plate is clean, Evan makes a wish for a monster to come eat his family. But be careful what you wish for! Soon Evan and Sue find themselves trying to hide a six-foot-tall green monster named Pea from their parents. In today’s modern world, it’s sometimes hard to unplug and in this hilarious adventure, Evan and his family learn the importance of putting technology down to play together! Weekends, Feb. 8 – Mar. 8, 2015: Saturdays (1 & 4pm), Sundays (1pm) Price: $12 – $25

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Stray Cat Theatre: Pluto

Arts & Culture
February 20, 2015 - March 7, 2015

Location: Tempe Performing Arts Center

See Stray Cat Theatre’s Pluto in Tempe February 20 – March 27, 2015. The new play from the writer of WOLVES and OCTOPUS. In the wake of a violent tragedy at a local community college, a single mother struggles to reconnect with her withdrawn son across the breakfast table as mysterious forces threaten to invade the kitchen. Continually interrupted by a talkative three-headed dog, a radio gone haywire, and an animated refrigerator, time is running short for mother and son to deal with the morning’s events. “And so I leave you with a warning: This is not Yockey writing in the sexually sinister, frequently delicious style of “Wolves” and “Octopus.” It is a much more potent cup o’ joe. Not everyone will want to see this play. Those who do may never be the same again.” – Atlanta Journal Constitution  Showtimes: Friday February 20th at 8:00 pm Saturday February 21st at 8:00 pm Sunday February 22nd at 2:00 pm Thursday February 26th at 7:00 pm Friday February 27th at 8:00 pm Saturday February 28th at 8:00 pm Sunday March 1st at 2:00 pm Thursday March 5th at 7:00 pm Friday March 6th at 8:00 pm Saturday March 7th at 8:00 pm  

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ASU Concert Choir and Chamber Singers Spring Concert

ASU School of Music Building
March 3, 2015

Location: ASU Katzin Concert Hall

The ASU Concert Choir and Chamber Singers Spring Concert is a varied program of music for chamber choir and a cappella chorus.   ASU School of Music Building Architecture ASU Herberger Institute for the Design and the Arts © 2014 Arizona Board of Regents. All rights reserved. Photography Credit: Tim Trumble

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ASU Bands at 100!: War and Peace – the 40s and the 80s

ASU School of Music Building
March 3, 2015

Location: ASU Gammage

ASU Bands at 100!: War and Peace – the 40s and the 80s will feature the ASU Wind Orchestra and Wind Ensemble performing  band music from the 40s and 80s, including works by Grainger, Gould, Colgrass and others. Free ASU School of Music Building Architecture ASU Herberger Institute for the Design and the Arts © 2014 Arizona Board of Regents. All rights reserved. Photography Credit: Tim Trumble

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ASU Symphony Orchestra with Guest Conductor Kayoko Dan

ASU Gammage stage
March 4, 2015

Location: ASU Gammage

Guest conductor Kayoko Dan returns to ASU on March 3. She will conduct the ASU Symphony Orchestra in a program  that will include Beethoven’s Leonore Overture No. 3, Brahms Symphony #2  and Faure’s Pelleas et Melisande. The concert is free. A versatile conductor, Kayoko Dan is active in the fields of orchestra, ballet and opera. Ms. Dan currently is the Music Director for the Chattanooga Symphony & Ballet. Previously she served as Assistant Conductor of the Phoenix Symphony and Music Director of Central Kentucky Youth Orchestras. Ms. Dan received her Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting and Master in Music Education from Arizona State University.  While serving as a Graduate Teaching Assistant at ASU, she received the Graduate Teaching Excellence Award in recognition of her dedication and passion for music education  She also taught at the Thomas J. Pappas school for homeless children in Arizona.  

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Virtual Clay: 25,000 Years – Craft Practice Beyond the Object

Virtual Clay 244 x 163
March 4, 2015

Location: ASU Art Museum

Whether used to safely store and efficiently serve food, transform experience through ceremony and ritual, or in the context of contemporary, socially engaged practices, ceramics and craft objects have been touchstones for human purpose and connection. This online talk with Michael Strand at the ASU Art Museum Brickyard will demonstrate the potential of objects in the 21st century to be effective catalysts for community cohesion and social change. This lecture is presented at the ASU Art Museum Brickyard as part of the 92Y Virtual Clay Online Classes series.

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Geeks’ Night Out

Tempe events
March 5, 2015

Location: Tempe City Hall

The City of Tempe has partnered with the Arizona SciTech Festival to present the 4th annual Geeks’ Night Out from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 5 at Tempe City Hall, 31 E. 5th St. This fusion of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) is an experience not to be missed.  Enthusiasts and geeks of all ages are invited to discover the science at this free, family-friendly event. Enjoy a variety of interactive STEAM displays and hands-on activities hosted by students from local Tempe elementary, middle and high schools, colleges and universities, community organizations, as well as the local business sector.

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Ongoing Events

Walk-in Wednesdays Open Mic Night at the TCA

Tempe Center for the Arts
January 7, 2014 - May 27, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

Every Wednesday evening through May 27, 2015 at the Tempe Center for the Arts, join host Walt Richardson for a relaxing evening of live music from some of the Valley’s best singer/songwriters. Artists vie for a spot in the taped-for-televisionSongwriters’ Showcase concert and the In the Spotlight events. Musicians and poets welcome. Enjoy food & beverage specials. No cover charge. Sign-up 5:45 p.m. Youth 5-6 p.m., sign-up 4:45 p.m.

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The Tempe Sound – Tempe History Museum

Tempe History Museum
November 14, 2014 - October 4, 2015

Location: Tempe History Museum

The Tempe History Museum presents its newest exhibit, The Tempe Sound. The Tempe History Museum will host 25 concerts, lectures, and gallery openings from Nov. 14 – Oct. 4, 2015. The museum will display hundreds of music paraphernalia honoring groups that have made an impact on Tempe’s music scene. Concerts, Lectures, and Events Nov. 14: The Tempe Sound: Opening Night featuring Hans Olson and Dead Hot Workshop Nov. 22: Thanks for Songwriters: Carol Pacey and the Honeyshakers and other singer/songwriters Dec. 5: Holiday concert by Pick n’ Holler Dec. 13: Japhy’s Descent March 14, 2015: LOUD IV – an outdoor celebration of brass bands March 20, 2015: Waylon Jennings Tribute with Jeremy Manley April 4, 2015: Walt Richardson

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Recent Acquisitions to the ASU Art Museum Collection

ASU Art 244 x 163
January 17, 2015 - April 11, 2015

Location: ASU Art Museum

Since the 1950s, the ASU Art Museum has been actively collecting provocative and compelling artworks to share with our students and community members. The collection now includes more than 12,000 objects, primarily acquired through generous donation. One area of focus is work created at the ASU Art Museum; the current exhibition includes many of these objects and others in a range of media acquired within the past four years. This exhibition is generously supported by the Evelyn Smith Exhibition Fund and members of the ASU Art Museum. Opening reception: Friday, Feb. 20, 2015 — Members and Alumni Preview 5:30–6:30 p.m. | Public Reception 6:30–8:30 p.m.  ASU Art Museum Hours Tuesday: During academic semesters 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Wednesday–Saturday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Additional educator hours by appointment: Mondays and before 11 a.m. Tuesday–Thursday Closed: Sunday, Monday and holidays

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Tan Ping: Follow My Line (彳亍 Chì Chù)

Ping 244 x 163
January 24, 2015 - May 16, 2015

Location: ASU Art Museum

Tan Ping is one of China’s most recognized artists and printmakers; his area of greatest exploration has been in abstract art rather than figurative work. In this installation of drawings and video, he invites viewers to consider human expression and culturally-specific contexts of viewing. This exhibition is generously supported by Tan Ping Studio, the Helme Prinzen Endowment and Pifo New Art Gallery. Opening reception: Friday, Feb. 20, 2015 — Members and Alumni Preview 5:30–6:30 p.m. | Public Reception 6:30–8:30 p.m.  ASU Art Museum Hours Tuesday: During academic semesters 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Summer hours: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.Wednesday–Saturday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.Additional educator hours by appointment: Mondays and before 11 a.m. Tuesday–ThursdayClosed: Sunday, Monday and holidays

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Alternative Lineage

Alternative Lineage 244 x 163
February 3, 2015 - March 21, 2015

Location: Arizona State University Tempe Campus

ALTERNATIVE Lineage, curated by Shelby Graham, investigates the nature of teaching experimental photography and traces how artists cultivate inquiry and alternative methods of production. Five generations of unconventional photographic practices by Henry Holmes Smith, Betty Hahn, Brian Taylor, Shelby Graham, Binh Danh and Jane Lindsay in this exhibition offer contemporary versions of alternative processes, adapting 19th and 20th century photographic techniques.  Northlight Gallery Hours Tuesday: 12:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.Wednesday-Saturday: 12:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.Closed: Sunday, Monday and major holidays & summer semester

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Unfixed: New Painting

Unfixed244 x 163
February 7, 2015 - June 6, 2015

Location: ASU Art Museum

The artists in the exhibition unfix historic notions of what a painting should be. Their works are hybrids of old and new, familiar and surprising media and processes. The results range from abstractions derived from street and popular culture to computer-generated algorithms printed on canvas.  This exhibition was made possible by generous loans and support of the Ovitz Family Collection, Los Angeles. Additional support from the Helme Prinzen Endowment. ASU Art Museum HoursTuesday: During academic semesters 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Summer hours: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.Wednesday–Saturday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.Closed: Sunday, Monday and holidays

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Page to Screen – Feb. 13 – June 6, 2015

Tempe Center for the Arts
February 13, 2015 - June 6, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

This exhibition at the Tempe Center for the Arts will highlight some of America’s favorite children’s books, comic books and fictional literature that have been adapted to film and television. Displays from local and national collections include original artworks, animation cells, original signed scripts, promotional materials and vintage toys from films and television shows such as Zorro, M*A*S*H and James Bond. This is a free TCA event. Facility HoursClosed Mondays10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday11 a.m. to 6 p.m., SaturdayOpen Sundays based on performance schedule

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March 2015 Tempe Comedy Concert Series at the TCA

Tempe Center for the Arts
March 6, 2015 - March 27, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

Come to the Tempe Center for the Arts for a hysterical Friday night of laughs and fun at the Tempe Comedy Concert Series. Recommended for ages 18 and older. Tickets for this event can be purchased here. March Schedule March 6th: Kristopher Royer  Kristofer Royer is one of the Valley’s hottest emerging stand-up comedians. His clever, yet brutal honesty is in constant demand at every club in town. Brace yourself for a hilarious evening as he tackles topics ranging from getting remarried and growing up Hillbilly to surviving the apocalypse on a budget. March 13th: TA Burrows presents the Legends of Song In this trip down memory lane, award-winning entertainer and impressionist T.A. Burrows uses his remarkable vocal talents to recreate the unique styles and distinctive sounds of these renowned singers as he performs some of their most popular tunes. March 20th: Jonathan Gregory Jonathan Gregory’s comedy, although unique and different, has been well received by a variety of audiences from retirement homes, to bars, to theaters, to World class comedy clubs. He broke onto the scene at the age of 19, as a punching dummy in a Mike Tyson promo, which aired on Showtime. In 2008, Gregory’s talents were highlighted on NBC’s Last Comic Standing. March 27th: TBD

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March 2015 Finally Friday at the TCA

Tempe Center for the Arts
March 6, 2015 - March 27, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

Shake off the workweek with a relaxing evening by the lake. Enjoy live music by participants in the TCA’s Songwriters’ Showcase, beautiful scenery and free appetizers from Atlasta Catering & Events. This event is free and open to the public. March Musical Performance Schedule March 6th: Amanda Soares March 13th: Gary Marsh March 20th: Bob McCarroll March 27th: TBD

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Spring Butterfly Exhibit – 2015

Desert Botanical Garden Spring Butterfly Exhibit
March 7, 2015 - May 10, 2015

Location: Desert Botanical Garden

Experience a magical, peaceful display of butterflies at the Desert Botanical Garden Spring Butterfly Exhibit. The Spring Butterfly Exhibit, located in the Marshall Butterfly Pavilion, is open March 7 – May 10, 2015. Hours are 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily. This tranquil environment features a wide variety of colorful butterflies and plants that attract them. Friendly Garden volunteers are on hand to answer questions and share information. And, on Saturdays from 10-11 a.m. from March 7-April 18, don’t miss the “Meet the Caterpillars” special event. You can learn more about the how a caterpillar turns into a butterfly and go on a guided tour (limit 25 per walk on a first come, first served basis, no RSVP required). Pricing to view the exhibit is $3.50 per person, with paid Garden admission. Children under 3 and Garden members may view the exhibit for free.

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