By Carson Mlnarik
Why let the Monster Trucks on TV have all the fun? You can see jaw-dropping and gravity-defying feats in your very own town. Monster Jam brings trucks like Grave Digger, Max-D and El Toro Loco onto the course for racing, freestyle and skill challenges that will have the whole family on the edge of their seats.
Tucson Arena, 260 S. Church Avenue, 791.4101, tucsonarena.com, 1 p.m., $20-$48.
Tucson Festival of Books
MARCH 2 AND MARCH 3
This free annual festival is a book lovers’ heaven, featuring authors, panels, signings and discussions galore. In addition to vendors, food and live performances, this year’s festival will also host authors like Jasmine Guillory, John Jay Osborn Jr., and Bell Hooks.
University of Arizona, 880 E. Fourth Street, 621.0302, tucsonfestivalofbooks.org, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., select ticketed author visits and general admission free.
The Manhattan Dolls: Dolls Through the Decades
Coming to Gaslight Theatre is a Monday Night Concert Series! Kicking off the series is internationally touring trio, The Manhattan Dolls. The retro-styled vocalists will take you on a smooth sailing journey through classics of the yesteryear.
The Gaslight Theatre, 7010 E. Broadway Boulevard, 886.9428, thegaslighttheatre.com, 6 p.m., adults $22.95 and kids $12.95.
One Night of Queen
If last year’s Bohemian Rhapsody movie is still on your mind, look no further. This international touring Queen tribute recreates the legendary band’s look, sound and showmanship. In fact, lead singer Gary Mullens won a British reality TV show with his Freddie Mercury impression. Don’t miss your chance to see “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Under Pressure,” and “We Are the Champions” unfold before your very eyes.
Fox Tucson Theatre, 17 W. Congress Street, 547.3040, foxtucson.com, 7:30 p.m., $27-$67.
Cat Video Fest
MARCH 6 AND MARCH 9
This clip program is exactly what you’d expect: a 70-minute compilation reel of some of the Internet’s most unique cat content— from home videos to animations and music videos. This family-friendly touring film is best viewed in an audience of cat lovers. A portion of proceeds will benefit local cat charities and shelters.
The Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Boulevard, 795.0844, loftcinema.org, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, and 2 p.m. Saturday, $10.
Wild West Con
MARCH 7 TO MARCH 9
Old Tucson plays host to the largest Western-style steampunk convention in the country. The famous movie studio and amusement park is the perfect backdrop for a weekend full of steampunk concerts, vendors, panels and workshops. From tea dueling to fashion shows and even a kids’ zone, anyone can get their sci-fi aesthetic on.
Old Tucson, 201 Kinney Road, 883.0100, wildwestcon.com, times vary, $44-$210.
Bacon and Brew Fest
Grab your foodie friends for a snob-worthy bacon and brew experience. Southern Arizona breweries will be on hand with 20 different beers alongside another 20 creative bacon concoctions from local chefs and restaurants. Tickets include samples for bacon dishes, as well as live music and a raffle. Grab your tickets soon — the event is capped!
Best Western Tucson International Airport, 6801 S. Tucson Boulevard, 358.6811, bit.ly/2SVifdk, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., $20.
University of Arizona vs. Arizona State Basketball
The rivalry continues as Tempe travels down to Tucson to square off in basketball. Don’t miss this chance to show off your territorial spirit as the boys duke it out once more. University of Arizona will be out to prove themselves after losing to ASU by 7 points in January.
McKale Memorial Center, 1 National Championship Drive, 621.2200, arizonawildcasts.com, 2 p.m., $45-$150.
Rock 102.1 KFMA’s annual concert celebrates its 20th anniversary with a lineup as rock n’ roll as it gets. Shinedown, Papa Roach, Asking Alexandria and The Fever 333 will headline the day-long party. Try and win your way in or splurge on the VIP reserved ticket for meal and drink passes, T-shirt and souvenir VIP laminate.
Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium, 2500 E. Ajo Way, 880.5362, kfma.com, noon, $135.
Wine Down with Wildlife
Support the wildlife and get a little wild yourself with the Desert Museum’s first wine festival. Sip on some of the best local and regional wines, including tastes from Desert Sky Vineyard, Flying Leap and Elgin Winery and Distillery, and enjoy live music, snacks and stargazing. Proceeds benefit the museum and if you’re lucky, you might get to catch some up-and-close and personal time with some furry friends.
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Road, 883.2702, desertmuseum.org, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., $40-$90 and designated drivers $25.
“The Greatest Showman” Sing-Along
There are two types of people in the world: the ones who have seen “The Greatest Showman” and ones who haven’t seen the light. This heartwarming Hugh Jackman musical is based on P.T. Barnum’s life in the circus, and was a sleeper hit in theaters with a soundtrack that topped the charts. This special presentation will feature lyrics on the screen, so you can sing along from “This is Me” to “The Greatest Show.”
Fox Theatre, 17 W. Congress Street, 547.3040, foxtucson.com, 3 p.m., $4-$5.
Donut Judge Me 5K
This is one race you “do-nut” want to miss. Donut Judge Me 5K is a run and walk for all skill level participants— the course and finish line are scoured with fresh Doughnut Peddler donuts and finishers receive their very own donut medal. Grab friends and score special pricing for teams of four or more.
Gene C. Reid Park, 900 S. Randolph Way, 791.4873, bit.ly/2GJ5rQL, 9 to 11 a.m., $30-$35.
This singer-songwriter’s most recent EP, “Inner Monologue, Part 1,” is a vulnerable, emotional pop confessional on anxiety, heartbreak and loving yourself. In tunes like “Issues,” “Anxiety” and “I Miss You,” fans have already connected with this up-and-coming performer’s brutal honesty. She swings through Tucson as she continues to open for P!nk after spending the past year on the road with Maroon 5.
The Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress Street, 740.1000, rialtotheatre.com, 8 p.m., $22-$177.
Death Cab for Cutie
The sensitive alternative indie rock crew behind hits like “I Will Follow You Into The Dark” and “Soul Meets Body” is back. Known for its unconventional instrumentation, deep lyrics and chill vibe, Death Cab has accumulated quite the fanbase since its formation in 1997. It tours its latest album, Thank You for Today.
Tucson Arena, 260 S. Church Avenue, 791.4101, tucsonarena.com, 8 p.m., $37-$73.
Battle of the Beats
This isn’t your typical battle of the bands— this time it’s all about the beats. Drummers from all genres, styles and backgrounds will compete to be crowned Tucson’s top title. Sounds like a good time to practice your head bang and get ready to perfect your beat clap.
Club Congress, 311 E. Congress Street, 622.8848, hotelcongress.com/club, 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., $5.