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A Fresh Start: New, Healthy and Fun Things to do This Season

January 13, 2017 by Lauren Potter

Phoenix Chinese Week Culture and Cuisine Festival. (Photo: Courtesy of Visit Phoenix)

Phoenix Chinese Week Culture and Cuisine Festival. (Photo: Courtesy of Visit Phoenix)

It’s officially winter, so whip out your mukluks and prepare for the icy cold blizzards. JK. We live in a beautiful urban desert brimming with vibrant culture and events just waiting to be discovered.

From romantic picnics in the park to music and food festivals galore — there’s no shortage of new, healthy and fun things to experience in Downtown Phoenix this season. To stay up to date on the latest happenings, visit Fresh Start in the Urban Heart at

Tacolandia / Jan. 28 / Margaret T. Hance Park

Stuff your face with endless taco samples from 30 of the Valley’s best taquerias all while enjoying music and with fellow foodies at Hance Park.

Night of the Open Door / Feb. 3 / ASU – Downtown Campus

Get a behind-the-scenes look  into what it takes to power a world-class university — complete with interactive activities, tours and more.

Sweetheart Lunch in the Park / Feb. 14 / The Space Between Park

Bring your sweetie and friends for a romantic lunch in the sun at the cutest little pop-up-park in Downtown Phoenix, located at 517 N. First Street.

1 Mission – Bikes Fight Poverty Charity Bike Ride / Feb. 11-12 / CityScape Phoenix

Help raise awareness and funds — whether virtually or in person — for community building programs at 1Mission.

Phoenix Urban Design Week / Feb. 8-15 / Downtown Phoenix

Get ready for all things urban during this design-focused week of community building with events focused on sustainability, placemaking and the built environment.

Chinese Culture & Cuisine Festival / Feb. 10-13 / Margaret T. Hance Park

Experience the diverse and vibrant culture of China through arts, food, dance, entertainment and more at this three-day festival featuring 

Arizona Matsuri – Festival of Japan / Feb. 25-26 / Heritage & Science Park

From bonsai to beer, sake to sushi, celebrate all things Japan in this two-day festival featuring music, demonstrations, children’s activities and more.

ClownTown Healing Fest / Feb. 24-25 / Herberger Theater Center

Clowning around is totally OK at this joyous celebration promoting health and healing in community featuring workshops, interactive activities, seminars and more.

PHX Vegan Food Festival / Feb. 25 / Phoenix Theater

Back by popular demand — Arizona’s favorite vegan restaurants and vendors join forces for a day of cruelty-free food, drink, locallymade products, demos by vegan chefs and more.

Devour Phoenix Bartending Competition / Feb. 26 / DeSoto Central Market

Celebrate (and experience) Phoenix’s cocktail culture at this epic mix-off featuring some of the best mixologists in town.

McDowell Mountain Music Festival / March 3-5/ Margaret T. Hance Park

Experience the culture and energy of Downtown Phoenix at this three-day festival jam-packed with music, food, arts, shopping, a kid’s zone, a silent auction, raffle and more.  

Devoured Culinary Classic / March 5 / Phoenix Art Museum

Eat and drink your way through an incredibly unique culinary experience featuring 100 restaurant owners, chefs, food producers, winemakers, distillers and craft beer makers.

VIVA PHX / March 11 / Downtown Phoenix

Explore the coolest venues, streets and alleyways throughout Downtown Phoenix while listening to 70+ bands at this one-night-only music festival.