Community Events

23 May

Devour Arizona | Geeking Out On Gastronomy

Arizona restaurant street-cred is on the rise. Just this year, The Guardian published an article about the eclectic and culturally diverse culinary scene in Phoenix. This city’s evolution into a foodie oasis is thanks to the growing local businesses of Devour Phoenix, a coalition of independent restaurants working with our friends at Local First AZ. At Bookmans, May is our month to geek out over all of your favorite things. Gather up those collectibles & comics, but don’t forget to show some love to the the most delicious of pastimes. From tacos to antipastos to pizzas, these local Arizona restaurants offer some of the best fare in the state. And even better, supporting local businesses keeps more funds here in our communities. Studies have shown that for every $100 spent in a locally owned business, roughly $42 remains right here in Arizona, while for the same $100 spent in a national chain, only $13 remains here. Get those forks & knives ready and head out on a local culinary adventure. Today, we’re highlighting five of our favorite Arizona restaurants. Luckily, each of the top five are moments away from Bookmans Phoenix. This summer, get on the road and explore one or all of these local gastronomic gems. Then, stop in at Bookmans to peruse our awesome cooking section for some rad finds.


09 May

Bookmans Tucson | Free Summer Kids Events

Everyone’s favorite used bookstore is hosting a cornucopia of family-friendly events all summer long at each of our six state-wide locations. Join us for Free Summer Kids Events with fun-filled activities like mad science experiments and lego build offs. Meet real-life mermaids and pirates as you sail the seven seas. Settle in for a jolly storytelling experience with puppets, magic and more. Free Summer Kids Events take place Tuesday through Friday at 10am. Here’s what we have coming your way:


03 Apr

Pop-Up Bookmans: Phoenix Community Outreach

Support the arts and connect with the community! This spring, Bookmans is out and about in the local neighborhood at some of the coolest cultural events that Phoenix has to offer. We’re presenting early literacy outreach storytimes at Phoenix Public Market on the last Saturday of each month. We’re also a part of Phoenix Art Museum’s Discount Tire Free Family Weekend on the second Saturday of each month. And to top it off, Bookmans is a part of Wednesday Wind Up, a fun and free event on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month hosted by City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department Latino Institute at Civic Space Park. By bridging Central Phoenix and the Downtown area with our Bookmans Phoenix neighborhood in the Northwest Valley, our goal is to circulate great ideas throughout our metropolis, while promoting Arizona-grown businesses and non-profit organizations.

Fridays In the Park

30 Mar

Bookmans Midtown Housewarming Party

Have you heard the news? Bookmans Grant has moved and is now Bookmans Midtown. Located at 3330 E. Speedway Blvd, just east of Country Club in Tucson, our new Midtown store is open with all the Bookmans bells and whistles, including great deals on new and used books, movies, games, instruments and more!


22 Mar

Get Active at Gilbert’s Ka-Pow! Superhero Adventure Run | Bookmans

Attention Super Heroes of all ages!

Don your capes because…

It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It…it…it could be YOU!

Superheroes? Capes? Adventure Runs? What is this craziness that we speak of? We assure you, future saviors of the world, it’s no dream. Nestled deep within the greenery and tennis courts known as The City of Gilbert’s Freestone Park, lies a top secret headquarters rumored to house one of the “Most Awesomely Impressive Superhero Training Courses Ever Imagined!”


21 Feb

Food, Shows & Crafts, Oh My! Arizona Renaissance Festival | Bookmans Recommends

The Arizona Renaissance Festival is one of my annual “must go” local events. I’ve been going to the Renaissance Festival since I was in high school and it was the first geeky event I ever attended, long before I started going to Phoenix Comicon. The Renaissance Festival is also accredited with sparking my interest in cosplay. I made my first costume, a purple cloak out of crushed velvet, for the Renaissance Festival nearly ten years ago. Years later I eventually went all out and made a full on Elizabethan gown which ended up being a hit at the festival. Bookmans is very happy to partner with them again this year.

While there are tons of things to look forward to at the Arizona Renaissance Festival, here are a few things I particularly love to experience every time I go:

The food.
The Arizona Renaissance Festival is most known for its smoked turkey legs and copious amounts of beer, however my particular favorites are the Steak on a Stick (a thick piece of tender steak on a stick), dessert crepes and funnel cakes, and the numerous variety of pastries at the Cottage Bakery which is conveniently located right at the entrance of the festival.

This year I stopped by the Cottage Bakery for a delicious sticky bun for breakfast, along with some coffee from the Cappuccino Inn (always nice to have on a cool, cloudy and potentially rainy day). Later in the afternoon, I munched on some fish and chips from the Queen’s Kitchen. I also make it a point every year to chase down the pickle guy who always has a bucket of crunchy, ice cold pickles which are especially refreshing after a beer, although this year it was a pickle lady.

Renaissance Festival

23 Jan

#TreatYoSelf for #LoveOfReading Month | Bookmans

It’s the perfect time of year to recharge and really focus on that certain special someone – YOU! Get away from the everyday grind and try a new adventure close to home. Who says luxury has to be expensive and time consuming? Delve into relaxing activities, revel in local retreats, and live it up like a real-life royal. This month, we encourage you to explore the Valley of the Sun’s best rejuvenating hidden gems. We’re counting down the top five local ways to #TreatYoSelf for #LoveOfReading month!


16 Dec

Gift #LocalLove This Season! | Local Gift Ideas From Bookmans

This time of year is perfect for being thankful for friends, family and Arizona weather. We like to remember the best parts about being an Arizonan by throwing shout outs to the local organizations that make our communities unique. This holiday season, take advantage of these unique ways to shop local and give local to those on your gift list. You might meet new friends, discover a favorite hangout or find that perfect holiday gift!

01 Dec

Deck the Halls this Season During our Month of Merriment at Bookmans!

Tis the season for holiday cheer at Bookmans! From the winter wonderland of Flagstaff to the city sidewalks of Phoenix and the Sonoran beauty of Tucson, all six Bookmans stores offer free events during our Month of Merriment this December. From visits from Kris Kringle himself to food drives and holiday craft events Bookmans has got you covered all month long to get you in the spirit to think about all thing St. Nick and get obsessed with peppermint everything. We invite you to join us as we celebrate the magic of the holidays at Bookmans with events that will tickle your holiday hope and fill your cup with cheer. Fa la la la la, la la la la.


08 Nov

Wednesday Wind Up in Phoenix

Do you find yourself looking for things to do to break up the monotony of the ‘day in, day out’ routine? Look no further, Bookmans and the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation has partnered up to keep you covered through December 7. It’s called Wednesday Wind Up and it’ll cheer you up right in time for hump day. Did we mention that it’s located at Civic Space park and is set directly around your lunch hour? You aren’t going to want to miss out on all of this fun! If you were wondering what kind of shenanigans you can find at these fabulous pop-up Wednesdays, keep on reading!

Wednesday Wind Up

27 Oct

Pickin’ In The Pine’s Was a Bluegrass Blast – Bookmans – Written by Paul Lee

In case you missed it… our Pickin’ in the Pines review. What a wonderful weekend!

The weekend of September 18-21, Flagstaff hosted Pickin’ in the Pines, an amazing bluegrass festival held at the amphitheater at Fort Tuthill County Park that was about 3 miles from our store. Bookmans was one of the sponsors and vendors at this rip roarin’ event and I along with some of my cohorts got to work our booth and attend this cool event. I was a newbie at Pickin’ and I had no idea what to expect. Usually my idea of festivals are overcrowded outdoor venues with long lines at the bathrooms and the acrid smell of bad beer and body odor.

I have to be honest, I had trepidations about attending Pickin’ in the Pines as I wasn’t a bluegrass fan even though I could appreciate the artistry of the music. The most exposure I had to this classic American music was when I went with my family to car shows back East where there were often bluegrass bands pickin away. I enjoyed what I heard but I never felt the need to pursue bluegrass any further.

Pickin' in the Pines

At Pickin’ In The Pines I fully expected to be trapped under our tent fighting off mosquitoes and fielding questions from customers who would try to talk to me about a subject I knew little about. When I asked on of my coworkers what kind of people we’d meet at the booth, he said: “We’re going to get a whole lot of boring white dudes who are going to talk our ears off about stuff we don’t care about,”. That didn’t help my enthusiasm as I already was afraid that I’d be out of my comfort zone. My girlfriend and another co-workers told me to buck up and go to the show with a positive attitude so I put my big boy Event Liaison pants on. It turned into a fantastic experience, of which I won’t soon forget. 

01 Oct

It’s Frightfully Falltastic At Bookmans Entertainment Exchange

Is there something strange in your neighborhood? Did you light the black candle at the old Sanderson house? Is your name Dracula or Frankenstein? Does the full moon cause you to grow hair, sprout fangs and be really, really good at basketball? Well my friend, you are in luck because it is Frightful Fall at Bookmans! All month long we are celebrating the creepy, the ghostly and the down right monster-y as we host free hallowonderful events in our stores.  So grab some candy corn and your “Eleven” from Stranger Things costume and head to your fave used media store for frightenly falltastic fun.


13 Sep

Bookmans Attends Arizona’s Local First’s Farmer to Chef Connection

For some, Arizona may seem barren. A dusty wasteland with sweltering heat and little for the land to offer. However our beloved Grand Canyon State couldn’t be more the opposite. With large regions of the state enjoying warm weather year round, winter vegetables are in abundance. Indigenous and native foods and produce are utilized to the fullest. Don’t believe us? Prickly pear margaritas. ‘Nuff said. And we are ranked second in our lettuce, romaine, cauliflower and broccoli production.

No one knows this better than Local First Arizona. An organization striving to build Arizona’s economy at the local level, facilitating relationships with local businesses through out Tucson, Phoenix and Flagstaff. Through their Rural Development Council, LFA helps builds businesses in smaller communities such as Pinetop and Snowflake. At the recent Farmer + Chef Connection nothing was more clear than the outstanding amount of local foods, produce, dairy and meats grown and fed on Arizona soil. Bookmans, a Local First sustaining member and self proclaimed Arizona Fangirl was happy to attend the second annual Farmer + Chef Connection at Tucson Convention Center recently, where we got to taste test many of the delicious delicacies Arizona has to offer.


24 Jun

Making A Splash With Moon Mermaid!

There are many legends about mermaids and even a few dozen historical claims of supposedly “real” mermaid sightings. Hundreds of years ago, sailors and residents in coastal towns around the world told of their encounters with sea-maidens. One particular story dating back to the early 1600s, claimed that a mermaid had entered Holland through a dike. Injured in the process, she was taken to a nearby lake and was soon nursed back to health. Some researchers believe that sightings of human-size ocean animals such as Manatees and Dugongs might have inspired many merfolk legends. These animals have a flat tail and two flippers that resemble stubby arms — traits that may make them resemble merfolk. They don’t look exactly like typical mermaids or mermen of course, but many sightings were from quite a distance away and since they were mostly submerged in water only parts of their bodies were visible. A glimpse of a head, arm or tail just before it dives under the waves might have spawned at least some mermaid reports. Hollywood has their own take on Mermaid lore with such finery as “Splash” and “Mako Mermaids” However, we can assure you, real they are.


14 Jun

ComicCon 2016 Cosplayers Brave The Heat And Have A Blast

By C’loni Bailey  (Asst Manager Bookmans Mesa)

Phoenix Comicon 2016 was the busiest one to date, with record-breaking attendee numbers as well as record high temperatures. Even being blasted with a heat wave that cranked the temperatures up to 115° didn’t stop the masses from converging on Phoenix Convention Center for the largest Phoenix Comicon ever. Attendance was estimated a to be nearly 100,000 – a dramatic leap from the 75,000 that attended the convention last year. Fortunately, although the crowds were visibly larger, they remained orderly and the volunteers did a wonderful job at keeping everything organized. Comicon 2016 registration was moved into the North Ballroom and was a well organized affair. There was a minor hiccup with one of the day’s lines winding up outside in the heat, but con organizers quickly realized their mistake and made the necessary adjustments to make sure the rest of the days lines were kept indoors.


13 Jun

Meeting Brandon Sanderson at Phx Comicon

With blistering, above average 110+ degree weather and thousands-I mean thousands-of cosplayers lining the Phoenix Convention Center floor, Phoenix Comicon was an absolute success. We had duck duck goose with Spidermans, Deadpools and Cher. There were meet and greets and panels with some of pop culture’s finest. Hands down, Phoenix Comicon 2016 went above and beyond my expectations. Aside from the fun to be had inside the Bookmans Youth Room and the awe-inspiring geekery that took over downtown Phoenix for three whole days, I was able to meet the one and only Brandon Sanderson.admin-ajax


10 Jun

Summer Kids Events Highlight- Puppets Amongus

Our Bookmans Tucson stores kicked off the first week of Summer Kids Events with a puppet show from local puppet theater, Puppets Amongus. The show was a rousing success with a puppet rendition of the classic children’s tale The Silk Princess by Charles Santore. The Silk Princess is based on the story of Leizu a legendary Chinese empress and wife of the Yellow Emperor. According to tradition Leizu brought silk to the Orient with her invention of the silk loom.

Summer Kids Events Header 2015

25 May

Phoenix Comicon 2016 Preview

By C’loni Bailey, Assistant Manager at Bookmans Mesa)

Phoenix Comicon 2016 fast approaches! There’s only a week until the biggest pop culture convention in Arizona kicks off on June 2-5. Here are few things you can look forward to!

Phoenix Comicon 2016 Preview

24 May

Ticket Tuesdays–VIP Passes to Flagstaff Hullabaloo – Written by Paul Lee

***This Contest is now closed****

It’s time for the glorious Flagstaff Hullabaloo, taking place June 4-5, 2016 at Rogers Park. This Ticket Tuesday, two lucky winners will win two VIP tickets to this wonderful celebration of community, which Bookmans Flagstaff co-sponsors.

Ticket Tuesdays--VIP Passes to Flagstaff Hullabaloo

Hullabaloo is one of Northern Arizona’s most exciting and diverse celebrations of Flagstaff’s awesomness. Included in the event are two stages of live entertainment featuring Calexico on Saturday night, a bike parade, a costume contest, Circus Bacchus, Vendor Village, a VIP section, local microbrews, and great local food. We Bookman-ites appreciate the outdoorsy focus on cycling, climbing, hiking, disc golfing and rafting, all for the greater good of the community.

Celebrate the Flagstaff community in a responsible and fun atmosphere that families and funksters alike enjoy. Hullabaloo brings together neighbors, families, artists, outdoor enthusiasts, local businesses and non-profits. By honoring the best of local culture, the festival coordinators throw the party of the year with something for everyone while making the community a better place. Since it’s beginning, Hullabaloo has raised over $65,000 in donations for local non-profits and is dedicated to continuing its mission.

To enter our contest to win two VIP passes to Hullabaloo, in our comments section please tell us why you love Flagstaff and what makes it such a great city. A winner will be chosen using and notified via email on May 31.

Get ready to launch into a great Summer with Hullabaloo in just a few weeks.

18 May

A Rock ’em Sock ’em Free Comic Book Day – Written by Paul Lee

Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) is a glorious celebration of our passion for paneled images and comic book awesomeness. This year, I attended FCBD at Flagstaff’s Cab Comics across the street from Bookmans Flagstaff. Our mighty superhero Book Man brought delight to the denizens and comic addicts of Flagstaff.

A Rock 'em Sock 'em Free Comic Book Day

Me about to get offed by a Tusken Raider. Actually, he was quite funny and had sounds effects for greater effect.

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