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Architectural Photography by Michael Baxter, Baxter Imaging LLC

Westgate hosts free concerts leading up to Super Bowl

You don’t need a ticket to Super Bowl XLIX on Feb. 1 or a VIP party pass to get in on all of the excitement and activities surrounding the big game. Just steps from the stadium, Westgate Entertainment District will be the hub of activity in Glendale with a Super Music Series presented by Bud Light, a five-day free concert series that is open to the public.

Beginning Weds. Jan. 28 through Super Bowl Sunday, Westgate’s WaterDance Plaza will transform into an outdoor concert venue with local and national bands hitting the stage. On Wednesday through Saturday festivities will run from 6pm – 10pm and on Sunday from 11am – 4pm. Each day will feature a different music genre, from classic rock and electronic dance music to country and 80’s hits. No tickets are required to take part in the fun and groove alongside fellow football fans.

Attendees can enjoy Westgate’s more than 20 restaurants, bars and retailers in addition to an open-air beer garden around the stage and other fan activities. Westgate will be making a donation to the 100 Club of Arizona from a portion of the beer garden sales. During the Super Music Series, with the exception of Super Bowl Sunday, parking is free at all of Westgate’s lots surrounding the Entertainment District.

“We are pleased to present a fantastic music lineup that is completely free and open to the public,” said Jeff Teetsel, development manager for Westgate Entertainment District. “With many of the events around the big game being private or expensive, we wanted to differentiate Westgate’s activities and provide a free opportunity for both locals and visiting fans to participate in the excitement surrounding the Super Bowl. No ticket is required to attend, and Westgate’s WaterDance Event Plaza is a spectacular open-air environment. We and our tenants look forward to welcoming thousands of fans each day.”

Weds. Jan. 28: Los Lobos (6pm – 10pm, local band opens at 6pm, headliner takes the stage at 8:30pm)

Thurs. Jan. 29: Chainsmokers (6pm – 10pm, local DJ opens at 6pm, headliner takes the stage at 8:30pm)

Fri. Jan. 30: Eli Young Band (6pm – 10pm, local band opens at 6pm, headliner takes the stage at 8:30pm)

Sat. Jan. 31: Dramarama, Bow Wow Wow, Gene Loves Jezebel and Naked Eyes (6pm – 10pm, local band opens at 6pm, headliner takes the stage at 8:30pm)

Sun. Feb 1: SUPER BOWL SUNDAY. All festivities and live music run from 11am – 4pm. Local bands include Kianna Martinez, Jared & The Mill and Chad Freeman & Redline.

For more information about Westgate Entertainment District, visit www.westgateaz.com.

running

Phoenix AIDS Walk and 5K raises $327K

More than 6,000 participants walked, ran and strolled with their dogs in downtown Phoenix on Oct. 21 to raise $327,379 for 19 Valley-based HIV/AIDS service providers.  Since 2007, AIDS Walk Phoenix & 5K Run has raised more than $1.6 million, which has been evenly distributed by Aunt Rita’s Foundation, the 501(c)3 nonprofit agency that organizes the event.

“We had more walkers and runners this year than ever before and though we didn’t hit our goal of $500,000, we still raised a significant amount of money that will be put to good use by the agencies Aunt Rita’s Foundation supports,” said Aunt Rita’s Executive Director Kit Kloeckl.  “I’d say that raising nearly $330,000 in a very tough economy makes this event a significant success.”

Walgreen’s was the title sponsor.  Other sponsors were:

• Presenting Sponsors: Sonora Quest Laboratories, Univision Arizona, 100.3FM La Kalle, Echo Magazine

• Platinum Sponsors: After Hours Multicultural, City of Phoenix, PMT Ambulance, Platinum: After Hours Multicultural, City of Phoenix, PMT Ambulance, Southwest Airlines, Carefree Resort & Conference Center and Safeway; Gold: Attentive Home Health, just Wink, ONE Community, SWAY Events, Phoenix Pride, Rainbows Festival, Cardenas Marketing and Catch Creative; Silver: Avella, ASU Wellness, Blue Cross® Blue Shield® of Arizona*, Scottsdale Healthcare’s FitCity Scottsdale, The State Press, WDP Entertainment, Lodestone Systems, Pride Guide Arizona, Arizona Lottery, Bud Light, and Cultural Sponge

Agencies that benefit from the event are: A New Leaf, The Bill Holt Clinic at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, Chicanos Por La Causa, Compassion in Action, Concilio Latino de Salud, Ebony House, Heal International, HIV/AIDS Law Project, HIV Care Directions, Joshua Tree Feeding Program, Inc., Maricopa Interfaith HIV/AIDS Alliance, McDowell Healthcare Center, Native American Health, One n Ten, The Phoenix Shanti Group, Project Hardhat, Southwest Behavioral Health Services, Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS, and Terros

In addition to AIDS Walk Phoenix & 5 Run, Aunt Rita’s signature events include SAVORlife, a month-long event during which individuals across the Valley host dinners for their friends, either at home, at restaurants or even at workplaces.  SAVORlife takes place in March.

For more information about Aunt Rita’s, go to www.auntritas.org.  For more information about SAVORlife and to register as a host, visit www.savorlifephoenix.org or call (602) 882-8675.

Top 10 Super Bowl Commercials Of 2012

Top 10 Super Bowl Commercials Of 2012

Every year the biggest brands in America spend millions of dollars for a small window of advertisement during the biggest sporting event of the year. From the comedy of Jerry Seinfeld to the growling voice of Clint Eastwood, 2012’s Super Bowl commercials were pretty spot on.

The Coca-Cola polar bears even had me leave at half-time to go grab a drink at the nearby gas station.

And outside of the completely unoriginal Go Daddy ad that runs every year (and lost their shock factor about five years ago), this year’s commercials had a nice mixture of old and new themes. While some commercials like Honda’s “Bueller’s Day Off” might not be relatable to a younger audience, others like the M&M’s “I’m sexy and I know it” ad may have missed an older demographic.

Let’s take a look at my top 10 2012 Super Bowl commercials:

10. Bridgestone – Performance Basketball

Who doesn’t love Steve Nash?


9. Samsung – Thing Called Love

What’s more funny — the commercial or the fact that Samsung thinks reinventing the Palm Pilot is going to be “revolutionary”?


8. Toyota Camry – Reinvented

Is it weird that the DMV was the part I was most excited about?


7. Cars.com – Confident You

What’s not funny about a second head singing disco?


6. Honda CRV – Matthew’s Day Off

While bigger fans of Bueller’s Day Off might put this higher on their list, it gets the No. 6 spot for originality more than anything.


5. Bud Light – Rescue Dog

How many times did we all hear a friend say, “I’m going to train my dog to do that”?


4. Acura – NSX – Seinfeld

Jerry Seinfeld is one of the funniest comedians, ever. And it’s only fitting that Jay Leno is the villain to end the commercial. #TeamCoco


3. Chevrolet – Happy Grad

What’s not exciting about a mini-fridge?


2. M&M’s – Just My Shell

Somehow this chocolate candy keeps me laughing every year.


1. Chrysler – It’s Halftime America

Whose party got real quiet during this commercial? Yeah, I had chills.


Is this list missing any of your favorite 2012 Super Bowl commercials?
Let us know!