10 Fall Festivals and Events in Downtown Phoenix
August 28, 2015 by Brandi Porter
Nothing beats events season in Downtown Phoenix — nothing. The weather is cooler, people are happier, and locals resurface from air-conditioned fortresses in search of fun. Well, we’re all in luck.
Though there’s always numerous things to do downtown, the fall season promises a remarkable influx of events and festivals — from outdoor movie nights to arts celebrations to music shows.
And while we’ve compiled dozens more events coming up in the next few months — here are just 10 ways you can Live It Up in Downtown Phoenix this September and October.
What do Downtown Phoenix and the Marine Corps have in common? Well, 600 marines will be here Sept. 10-13 during Marine Week to show off their equipment, give martial arts demonstrations and host dozens of other free activities. Last year’s Marine Week took Seattle by storm, and this year’s offers Phoenicians the chance to meet members of the United States Marine Corps as well as crawl around in military-grade vehicles and aircraft, watch live band performances and attend flag raising and wreath laying ceremonies. Oo-rah!
Brew. Beer. Ale. Whatever you call it, you don’t want to miss this self-guided excursion to sample craft beer at local bars and restaurants – each a short walk, bike ride or light rail stop away. Each participating location will serve three different samples of beer for just $1-2 in addition to a complimentary snack. Attendees are encouraged to visit new restaurants and experience Downtown Phoenix in a new way. A list of participating locations is available at www.dtphx.org/aletrail
Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel is closing down Adams Street, and opening it up to a massive block party from 6-10 p.m. complete with rad street activations like photo booths and bike charging stations (you charge your phone by pedaling). The electronic band, Cut Copy, will headline the celebration. Follow Renaissance on Facebook for more information on the event.
Every Thursday starting Sept. 24, the Phoenix Public Market grounds will transform into an outdoor marketplace for dinner, drinks, live entertainment and shopping. Set under the city lights and stars, Downtown Sundown is an outdoor market where you can enjoy beer, wine and cocktails while you dine or shop for farm fresh foods and specialty goods. Evenings will also include a rotating line-up of live music, performance art groups, local filmmakers and dancing.
In its fourth year, Los Dias De La Crescent at Crescent Ballroom quickly became a fan favorite for its celebration of Arizona music. The show features performances by 10 locally cherished bands spread across two stages — one indoors and an outdoor stage on Second Avenue. This year’s lineup includes Phoenix Afrobeat Orchestra, Playboy Manbaby, Chica Dust and WLFPCK to name a few. Tickets are $10 in advance.
The Chile Pepper Festival is one the hottest events in town — literally. Hosted by Roosevelt Row CDC and Roosevelt Growhouse, the event’s main draw is the chile-pepper inspired fare created by some of the best restauranteurs and chefs in Phoenix. In between bites, make sure to check out on-site chile roasting, cooking demos, talent show, kids’ activities or salsa dancing. And don’t worry, you can cool your mouth down with a beer from the Deschutes Brewery beer garden or a drink from the gourmet margarita station. Admission is free, but RSVPs are encouraged.
In recognition of 30 years of the Phoenix Arts and Culture Commission, the City of Phoenix is hosting a free festival in Downtown Phoenix featuring music, dance, theatre and arts demonstrations. The multi-site celebration will take place at the Phoenix Convention Center, Herberger Theater and on Monroe Street between Second and Third streets. Nearly 100 arts and culture organizations are contributing to the event, which will also include downtown public art tours, food trucks and family-friendly activities.
Enjoy an evening beneath the city lights at a free monthly outdoor movie series at Patriots Park in CityScape. Every second Thursday of the month (October’s will be the second Friday), movie goers are encouraged to bring a picnic blanket, some chairs and the whole family for a night of free family fun. The evening begins at 6:30 p.m. with pre-movie activities and giveaways. Presented by CityScape in partnership with Downtown Phoenix Inc.
Beautiful music and gorgeous cars collide at this unique event benefiting The Phoenix Symphony. On Saturday, Oct. 24, car lovers can peruse priceless collector cars and race cars orchestrated by the Barrett-Jackson Auction Company before enjoying a world-premiere performance by the symphony itself.
Zombie Walk 7, the preeminent gathering of zombies west of the Mississippi, returns to Heritage & Science Park on Saturday, Oct. 24. This family-friendly event features loads of undead entertainment including: the Lil’ Zombie Zone, Goodwill Arizona Zombification Zone, Four Peaks Beer Gardens, Rebel Lounge Main Stage featuring Alien Ant Farm, and of course, the 1.5-mile zombie limp through Downtown Phoenix led by John Holmberg from KUPD’s Morning Sickness. The best part? Zombie Walk is FREE — just bring canned food to help reach a charitable goal of 7 tons of donations benefiting St. Mary’s Food Bank.
Looking for more fun-filled events? You’re in luck! We’ve compiled them all into one, convenient web address: www.dtphx.org/liveitup