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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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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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Iliza Shlesinger at Tempe Impov

Tempe Improv
April 17, 2015 - April 19, 2015

Location: Tempe Improv Comedy Theatre

Originally from Dallas, Iliza Shlesinger moved to Los Angeles after graduating from Emerson College. She is the only female and youngest comedian to hold the title of NBC’S Last Comic Standing. Her live stand-up résumé includes performing at the coveted Montreal Just for Laughs Festival, hundreds of clubs and colleges, and in various countries for our troops overseas. See her live at the Tempe Improv April 17-19, 2015. Show Times: April 17, 2015 7:30 & 10:00 p.m. April 18, 2015 7:00 & 10:00 p.m. April 18, 2015 7:00 p.m.  

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Our Kiki: A Gay Farce

Lyceum Theatre
April 17, 2015 - April 19, 2015

Location: Arizona State University Tempe Campus

The ASU School of Film, Dance and Theatre presents Our Kiki: A Gay Farce. On the eve of Matt and Phil’s six-year anniversary, an immigration officer unexpectedly arrives to investigate their marriage. The problem is, Matt is married to Phil’s best friend Molly. Identities, relationships and languages get confused in this hilarious physical comedy by Seth Tucker. Mature content. Seth Tucker is an ASU alum and New York based Equity actor who was most recently seen Off-Broadway as Miss West Coast in the revival of Pageant: The Musical. He also recorded the first ever Pageant cast album. April 17 & 18, 7:30 p.m. April 19, 2 p.m. April 23-25, 7:30 p.m. April 26, 2015, 2 p.m. Tickets: $8-16

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Chalk Art Festival at Tempe Marketplace

Tempe Marketplace
April 18, 2015 - April 30, 2015

Location: Tempe Marketplace

Watch as artists transform the Tempe Marketplace sidewalks into colorful works of art and play in the designated KidZone. For more details, visit tempemarketplace.com/chalk.

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The Three Javelinas

The Three Javalinas
April 19, 2015 - May 24, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

See The Three Javelinas at the Tempe Center for the Arts April 19 – May 24, 2015. Who is afraid of the big, bad… coyote?! A favorite tale gets a southwestern spin in this world-premiere stage adaptation of Susan Lowell’s picture book. But don’t call them pigs! The Three Javelinas are more than just straw, sticks and bricks. Josefina Javelina dreams of a career on stage. Juan wants a quiet place to think. And as for José—he just wants someone to listen to his jokes! When a series of misadventures leave them to build houses in the desert, they catch the attention of a hungry coyote. This musical tribute to the Arizona landscape will delight audiences of all ages. Weekends April 19 – May 24, 2015: Saturdays (1 & 4pm), Sundays (1pm) Price: $12 – $25

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Press Tour with Kamy Wicoff, Jo Ivester and Hollye Dexter

Changing Hands Bookstore
April 20, 2015

Location: South Tempe

Kamy Wicoff, Jo Ivester and Hollye Dexter visit Changing Hands Bookstore on April 20 with their new books as part of the She Writes spring tour.

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Performance with a View: A Clarinet Extravaganza

Tempe Center for the Arts
April 21, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

The clarinet studio at ASU, under the direction of Robert Spring, presents a one hour “Collage Concert” of nonstop clarinet music, including clarinet choirs with all size clarinets to solo pieces using acting, movement and electronics. Music from the Baroque to newly commissioned music composed to be premiered on this event. Seating is limited for this event. Coffee service begins at 9:30 a.m.

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10th Annual ASU Student Film Festival

Tempe events
April 21, 2015 - April 22, 2015

Location: Downtown Tempe

Enjoy student produced short films at the 10th Annual ASU Student Film Festival. Each spring, Arizona State University students screen their best short films in the AFA Student Film Festival. The festival is co-sponsored by the School of Film, Dance and Theatre and the ASU Filmmakers Association, a student organization. The festival includes a non-juried and juried (with prize money) entries. Cost: $10.00

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MOTOWN THE MUSICAL

MOTOWN the MUSICAL
April 21, 2015 - April 26, 2015

Location: ASU Gammage

Tap your feet to the beat at MOTOWN THE MUSICAL, onstage April 21-26, 2015 at Tempe’s ASU Gammage. It began as one man’s story… became everyone’s music… and is now Broadway’s musical. MOTOWN THE MUSICAL is the true American dream story of Motown founder Berry Gordy’s journey from featherweight boxer to the heavyweight music mogul who launched the careers of Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and many more. Motown shattered barriers, shaped our lives and made us all move to the same beat. Featuring classic songs such as “My Girl” and “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough,” experience the story behind the music in the record-breaking smash hit MOTOWN THE MUSICAL!

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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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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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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

The Page to Screen 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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Tim Trumble Exhibit at ASU Gammage

Tim Trumble
March 5, 2015 - May 20, 2015

Location: ASU Gammage

Tim Trumble, a photographer who has been documenting ASU arts and community outreach events for almost 20 years, will be featured in an exhibition at ASU Gammage March 5 through May 20. Exhibit hours at ASU Gammage are 1 to 4 p.m. Mondays, or by appointment. Due to rehearsals, event set-up, performances, special events and holidays, it is advisable to call (480) 965-6912 or (480) 965-0458 to ensure viewing hours, since they are subject to cancellation without notice.  

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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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Carnival of Illusion

Carnival of Illusion
March 15, 2015 - June 28, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

Step right up and get ready to laugh, have fun and celebrate a magical night out. This top-rated show is “Revitalizing Magic” by blending their “Around the World in 80 Minutes” travel theme with all the charms of a Vaudeville-inspired roadshow. Great for date nights, anniversaries and special nights out. Shows on select Saturdays at the Tempe Center for the Arts, Mesa Arts Center, and Arizona Biltmore Resort. Carnival of Illusion is Magic, Mystery, and Oooh La La! Carnival of Illusion offers shows on select Saturdays throughout the year at several locations. Please visit their website for specific show times and locations: www.carnivalofillusion.com

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April 2015 Finally Friday at the TCA

Tempe Center for the Arts
April 3, 2015 - April 24, 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 & Event Concepts. No Cover Charge. April 2015 Finally Friday Schedule April 3rd – Tom Bertling April 10th – AJ Odneal April 17th – Bob McCarroll April 24th – Billy Cioffi  

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April 2015 Tempe Comedy Concert Series

Tempe Center for the Arts
April 3, 2015 - April 24, 2015

Location: Tempe Center for the Arts

Tempe’s newest comedy series brings the best Valley comics to the stage at the Tempe Center for the Arts. No food or drink minimums. Recommended for ages 18 and older. April 10th – Jon Jesmer Phoenix favorite Jon Jesmer makes a much demanded return to The Tempe Center for the Arts.  From his appearances at Improv to the legendary Comedy Store on the Sunset Strip, to TCA Jon never fails to keep  an audience on their toes taking  us on his journey from Up all night bartender in booze filled Scottsdale to marriage and fatherhood.  Recommended for ages 18 and older. April 17th –  Roberts, Longfellow & Green Tempe Comedy Concert Series is proud to present three of the most promising unique and creative comics seen in quite some time. On this night come out and see Valerie Roberts, Michael Longfellow, and Paul Green, and see what we believe will be the beginning of something big!  Recommended for ages 18 and older. April 24th – Gene Moore Gene is a rare find who not only loves doing stand-up, but also believes in promoting diversity in the comedy world. On this night Gene and his LGBT friends (and even a straight one or two) will challenge your beliefs, make you smile, see something new and make you laugh. Tickets to Tempe Comedy Concert Series performances can be purchased here.

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