Looking for something to do this weekend that doesn’t involve camping in front of an air conditioning fan? That’s where we come in, because we’ve put together a list of activities this weekend where you can escape the heat and have fun while doing it. Over the three-day period from Friday July 15th to Sunday July 17th, possibilities range from close encounters with lizards at the latest ReptiCon Phoenix, to attending a pop-up anime festival, hanging out at a party at the pool, working a vintage typography, or catching a set by comedian Eddie Griffin.

Eddie Griffin

In the late 90s and early 2000s, comedian and actor Eddie Griffin was a staple. He starred in the UPN sitcom Malcolm and Eddieappeared in episodes of the Chappelle show and Def Comedy Jamand played memorable roles in movies like Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, horror movieand The new guy. Griffin is best known for his often blasphemous humor, and if you’ve heard his comedy, chances are you’ve been offended at least once (probably between fits of laughter). Griffin is scheduled to appear at Stand Up Live, 50 West Jefferson Street, Friday, July 15 and Saturday, July 16. Performances are at 7 and 9:45 p.m. General admission is $35. Benjamin Leatherman

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Try letterpress printing at a Hazel & Violet workshop.

Benjamin Leatherman

Typography workshops

DIY is always cheesy no matter what. So if you want to create your own coasters, posters or stationery, now is your chance to step behind the heavy machinery of Hazel & Violet, 1301 Grand Avenue, #2B, for their letterpress workshop. This weekend you can learn the basics of printing on Reprex, Vandercook 01 or Potter presses with wood and metal, and choose your own vintage cut to get started. Workshops are held from 10 a.m. to noon on Friday, July 15 and Saturday, July 16. The cost is $60 per person. You can register and get more information here. Lauren Cusimano

Click to enlarge The participants of the Desert Splash Pool in 2018. - BENJAMIN LEATHERMAN

Participants in the Desert Splash Pool in 2018.

Benjamin Leatherman

Splash Desert Vacation Weekend

Every weekend there are a variety of swimming celebrations taking place at local hotels or other pool-equipped venues, each with its own unique vibe and music selection. Example: the annual Desert Splash, which is aimed at fans of hip-hop, trap and R&B sounds – and anyone who wants to party for two days in a row. The stylish event kicks off with a “Shorts & Stillettos” affair from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday, July 15 at The Lounge Soho, 1457 West Southern Avenue in Mesa. The next day, the festivities move to the Holiday Inn & Suites, 1600 South Country Club Drive in Mesa, for a “Miami-style” pool party from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 16. A pajama and lingerie party will follow in the hotel ballroom from 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. DJs, drinks, games, gifts and vendors are also promised. General admission is $60 and VIP tickets are $100. Both options cover all three events. More information is available here. Benjamin Leatherman

Click to enlarge Local anime cosplayers.  - BENJAMIN CUIRIER

Local anime cosplayers.

Benjamin Leatherman

Ganbatte Minicon

Local anime fans looking for a solution to hold them over until Saboten Con in September might consider attending this one-day pop-up event on Saturday, July 16 at Sun Studios of Arizona, 1425 West. 14th Street in Tempe. More than 50 vendors will be present for the convention, which will feature activities such as a scavenger hunt, raffles, a cosplay contest and artistic fashion show, K-pop dance performances, a “swap weeb” ( or weeb swap meet), and more. Hours are noon to 9 p.m. General admission is $15 and VIP tickets are $30. Benjamin Leatherman

Rep! The Genetic Opera

Rep! The Genetic Opera may be 14 years old, but the film has maintained a cult following for over a decade, thanks to its country, gore and innovative character. A sci-fi gothic rock opera horror movie doesn’t seem to work at all, but look at the longevity of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. The songs on the organ cover are twisted, overwhelming and hard to follow, but writers and composers Darren Lynn Bousman and Terrance Zdunich definitely pulled it off. The film is sick, twisted and features sing-along songs, the hallmark of any good rock opera. The Cult Classics local film repertoire series will be screened Rep! The Genetic Opera at 9:30 p.m. Saturday, July 16 at Landmark Theaters Scottsdale Quarter, 15257 North Scottsdale Road, Suite 230, Scottsdale. General admission is $15 in advance. VIP packages, which include commemorative t-shirts, prints and other merchandise, start between $25 and $100. Melissa Fossum

Click to enlarge Have a life-size encounter with reptiles at ReptiCon.  - REPTICON

Have a life-size encounter with reptiles at ReptiCon.


ReptiCon Phoenix

For those who don’t suffer from herpetophobia (or fear of reptiles), the latest edition of ReptiCon Phoenix will take place on Saturday July 16 and Sunday July 17 at the Mesa Convention Center, 263 North Center Street. The two-day event will feature vendors, breeders, and experts, as well as the chance to handle a scaly creature or two. According to the con’s website, reptiles like geckos, snakes, and maybe even an alligator will make an appearance. (Participants are also allowed to bring two of their own reptiles, but only if they are non-poisonous.) Hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Ticket prices vary per day. See the ReptiCon website for more details. Benjamin Leatherman