Scottsdale Update - Oct. 23, 2023


Explore the “Power of Play” at Canal Convergence, Nov. 3-11. This year’s theme highlights the concept of “play” as one of the most creative and meaningful activities in the human experience. Discover the strength of play at this free, outdoor, 10-night public art event featuring immersive, large-scale, light-based artworks, educational workshops, family-friendly activities, art tours, live music and dance performances, a beer and wine garden, food trucks and more. 

Event highlight: The One Water Brewing Showcase. Enjoy craft beers brewed with Scottsdale’s ultra-pure recycled water from 6-10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 3 and Saturday, Nov. 4. Scottsdale Water delivers recycled water from the Advanced Water Treatment Plant to participating breweries for this unique event. In 2019, Scottsdale Water became the first Arizona agency permitted to treat recycled water for potable use – water that is safe for humans to drink.

Scottsdale Veterans Day commemoration features Michael McLaughlin, retired submariner and former APS/Palo Verde executive. Scottsdale’s 2023 Veterans Day Commemoration will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 11 on the Memorial Lawn at Scottsdale City Hall in partnership with American Legion Post 44 and other veterans service organizations.

This year’s keynote speaker is Michael McLaughlin, Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy (retired), who had a 30-year career in the U.S. Naval Submarine force. McLaughlin graduated from high school in Mesa and is a 1981 graduate of the United States Naval Academy. His Navy service included billets as commanding officer, USS LA JOLLA (SSN 701), Commodore of Submarine Squadron 11 and Chief of Staff of Naval Submarine Forces. He rose to the rank of Rear Admiral and finished his naval service as Commander, Submarine Group Two, comprising the 25 attack submarines on the East Coast.

Mayor David D. Ortega emcees the event. Additional speakers include Scottsdale’s American Legion Post 44 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Chapter 3513 representatives.


Get a head start learning about city issues, projects and activities by attending or listening in on the many public meetings we host. Here’s what’s coming up: 


Halloween Happenings:

  • Don't ghost this year’s annual Fall Festival: Dress to impress for the costume contest, try your hand at exciting carnival games, enjoy live entertainment and more. The free fun takes place 4-7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28, at Chaparral Park.

  • Watch Spooky Stories of Scottsdale: Citizen Advisor and resident storyteller Bruce Wall shares three stories about people in Scottsdale who met an unusual end over the last 85 years. The presentation contains stories that may be inappropriate for younger viewers. 

Commemorate Scottsdale Dia de Los Muertos through multiple celebrations and art installations. These events bring together world-class artists and the local community to create a vibrant, visually entertaining, larger-than-life, cross-cultural experience with city-wide activations of art, altars and performances. Attend:

  • Altares Y Ofrendas celebrates the rich, ancient traditions of Dia de Los Muertos and runs 10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily, through Thursday, Nov. 2. Admission is $15 and free for children 10 and younger. 

  • Civic Center Arts Installation Experience runs 8 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 27-Monday, Oct. 30, and features large-scale fine art installations, Mesoamerican-inspired sculptures and traditional altars in the outdoor space north of Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. Second St. Free. 

  • Fiesta De Muertos Y Danza” will be performed at 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28, in the Virginia G. Piper Theater at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. Second St. Grandeza Mexicana Folk Ballet Company will combine art and ritual, transporting audience members through regions of Mexico and its richness and wonderment of cultures while honoring the origins of Dia de Los Muertos’ celebration of life, loss and remembrance. 

In this video, Zarco Guerrero, sculptor, mask maker and performance artist, describes this holiday celebrated in Mexico, throughout Latin America and increasingly in the United States.

Listen to free music provided by The Scottsdale Concert Band. The band begins its 46th season at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25, in the amphitheater at Scottsdale Community College. Under the new direction of Jeff Quamo, the band will perform Dvorak’s “New World Symphony;” a selection of tunes by Henry Mancini, “Mancini Magic;” “Bring Him Home;” from “Les Misérables,” and opera tunes from Puccini, with guest soloists Lisanne Norman-Brooks and Johnny Huerta. Also on the program is a baseball-themed tune that lovers of the sport will immediately recognize.

Fall in Love with Scottsdale Civic Center. The city officially unveils the much-anticipated Scottsdale Civic Center remodel — a comprehensive renovation of the area that has served as the city’s civic and signature special event and gathering space for 55 years. This celebration features more than 70 activities taking place in and around the center and throughout Old Town through Wednesday, Nov. 22. Get a complete list.  

Upcoming highlights:

  • Celebrating Windows to the West, The Desert’s Garden and City Hall: Featuring speakers, dance performances, live music, food, and giveaways, we’ll recognize the 50th anniversary of Windows to the West by Louise Nevelson and celebrate the new artwork, The Desert’s Garden by Tammi Lynch-Forrest. This free event is open to the public and begins at Windows to the West. 4-6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 26, Civic Center West Bowl.

  • Dreamy Draw Music Festival: Inspired by the vibrant Southwestern spirit of Arizona, the two-day Dreamy Draw Country Music Festival celebrates the harmonious fusion of country and Americana. Headliners include Midland, Lord Huron, Margo Price and Trampled by Turtles. 1-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 3 and 4, Scottsdale Civic Center. Tickets start at $85/single day or $140/weekend.


  • Spook-Trac-Ula: This family-friendly event is perfect for kids of all ages. Ninety-minute time blocks at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. nightly, through Oct. 31.   

  • Arizona Fall League: Operated by Major League Baseball, this league emerged in 1992 to bring together top minor league prospects during the off-season. Get the schedule and learn how to buy tickets

  • Scottsdale ArtWalk: Scottsdale is home to more than 100 galleries, dedicated to exhibiting the finest visual art from around the world and locally. Stroll at your own pace. 7-9 p.m. Thursdays. Specialty-themed Gold Palette ArtWalks are held 6:30-9 p.m. about once a month. 

Get more events information.


Prescription Drug Take Back available at two Scottsdale locations Saturday. The collections, taking place 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28, are part of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s annual National Prescription Drug Take-Back. Bring your pills for disposal to the Granite Reef Senior Center, 1700 N. Granite Reef Road, or Foothills District Police Station in the Market Street Plaza at DC Ranch, 20363 N. Pima Road. Please do not bring liquids. Scottsdale is one of more than 40 state, local and tribal police departments participating in this national effort. In Arizona alone, more than 100,000 pounds of prescription drugs have been collected from prior Take-Back events. 

Get schooled at October Neighborhood College classes. Neighborhood College offers four tracks: HOA/Condo, Good Neighbor, Stories of Scottsdale History and Scottsdale 360, a virtual learning series that highlights the people, policies and programs that shape our community. Register for one class or all.

Here’s what’s coming up:

  • Stories of Scottsdale History Series: Scoundrels, Rascals & Cutthroats, 1-3 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 26, Holland Center. Hear about the stories of famous and infamous crimes that happened in Scottsdale. You’ll learn how the mail was first brought from Phoenix to Scottsdale, why an Arizona high school has a unique mascot and what investigative tools were available to the police at various times. 

  • Scottsdale’s Unlucky Seven, 1-3 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8, Mustang Library Auditorium. We’ll look back at two unusual criminal stories in Scottsdale history, and they happened in the same year! These stories include a collision that led to the family of the victim seeking longer sentences for vehicular homicides and a murder for hire case that had more curve balls than a spring training game! This is a repeat presentation.

  • Treasures of Scottsdale: The Extraordinary Ellis Family, 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14, Community Design Studio, or 1-3 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 15, Mustang Library Auditorium. For more than 70 years, the Cattle Track Arts Compound has been a hub of creativity and innovation – its influence reaching around the globe and back again. Yet the site has remained off the radar of most residents and visitors. The family behind this one-of-a-kind home for the arts traces its roots back to just a few years after the founding of the state of Arizona. Come learn about this unique and remarkable family and the artists its helped flourish.


Choose Scottsdale captures award for video showcasing business-friendly environment. The International Economic Development Council recognized Scottsdale’s Economic Development office with a bronze level award for its promotional video, All Day, Every Day. The video showcases business leaders discussing Scottsdale’s strengths, opportunities and business-friendly environment, and serves as a powerful promotional tool. Learn more about Choose Scottsdale

Scottsdale Sister Cities Association update: Scottsdale-Killarney student golf exchange tees off. The association welcomes four student golfers and their two chaperones from Killarney, Ireland, for the second half of the Inaugural Scottsdale-Killarney Student Golf Exchange Thursday, Oct 26. 

The visiting teen athletes will be home hosted by the families of Scottsdale’s youth ambassadors who had been their guests for 10 days in June, as part of the exchange program to “Educate World-Class Ambassadors through Golf.” 

During the nine-day visit, the golfing foursomes are being hosted for rounds at TopGolf and PopStroke, and Talking Stick, We-Ko-Pa and Camelback golf clubs. The itinerary also includes a day trip to the Grand Canyon, tour of Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West, and a volunteer experience at Vista Del Camino Food Bank. The visitors also will shadow their hosts at their respective high schools and attend homecoming football games and dances. 

Job of the Week: Senior Human Services Analyst. The successful candidate prepares and coordinates recruitments, responds to EEOC charges, conducts employee relation investigations, consults on corrective action and disciplinary matters, and more. Benefits include 12 paid holidays; sick leave; medical, dental and vision benefits; tuition reimbursement; participation in Arizona State Retirement System; and more. Learn more and apply.


Scottsdale What Works Cities 2023 Gold certification

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