While much of the country is spending the month of February in hibernation, the shortest month is also the most touristy in the desert Southwest. With a packed schedule of art festivals, sporting events, and other activities, Phoenix visitors don't have to look hard for something to do.
From museum and gallery openings to county fairs, February's calendar is pretty packed and many of the events and exhibits are free to attend. Best of all, you don't have to worry about getting snowed out of your plans.
Explore laboratories, living collections, and museums on the Arizona State University campuses in Phoenix. Visitors can experience artistic performances, hands-on activities, and spaces that are typically closed to the public during this annual Open Door event, held in 2020 on February 1 on the West campus, February 8 in Downtown Phoenix, February 22 in Tempe, and February 29 on the Polytechnic campus, all between 1 and 5 p.m.
The Buckeye Air Fair returns to Phoenix with a free event celebrating more than 50 years of aviation from February 7 to 9, 2020. The fair features a vintage aircraft museum, vendors, exhibits, and a science and technology expo. Located at the Buckeye Municipal Airport in Buckeye, Arizona, this free event also features radio-controlled aircraft demonstrations, a visit to the Lauridsen Aviation Museum, and live entertainment.
Arizona Beer Week takes place February 6 to 16 and invites guests to participate in tastings, beer-pairing dinners, beer seminars, home brewer confabs, pub crawls, and other activities paying homage to the popular beverage. The lineup for Arizona Beer Week includes a diverse range of bars, restaurants, and breweries.
The Mesa Marathon will rip through the Valley on February 8, offering a variety of races and events. Athletes of all ages are welcome to participate in a kids' 1K, a 10K, a half marathon, or a full marathon, which starts in East Mesa and stretches 26.2 miles before ending at Mesa Riverview.
The world's largest horse-drawn parade will be held in Old Town Scottsdale on February 8, 2020, followed immediately by the Trail's End Festival, a massive block party for all ages. The 67th anniversary of the festival features a variety of floats and cars celebrating the history and development of Phoenix's largest suburb.
Native American dancers from the U.S. and Canada compete in the World Championship Hoop Dance Contest held at The Heard Museum every February. The event celebrates the various tribes that first settled in the Americas, and whose tribal rituals often involved dancing with hoops. Tribes from all across North America are represented in the festivities, which will be held on February 8 and 9, 2020.
If you're a fan of local cuisine, then stop by the Street Eats Food Truck Festival on February 8 and 9, 2020. This year, it will be held at the Salt River Fields at Talking Stick in Scottsdale, and as always, you can either purchase sample tasters or full-size portions of food from the various kitchens on wheels at the event.
From February 13 to 23, 2020, WestWorld of Scottsdale will host the most prestigious Arabian horse show in the United States: The Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show. The 65th annual event features competitors of all ages from across the globe competing for prizes in a variety of riding contests and horse-related activities. Also included in the event is an ice cream social, a dog costume class, barn tours, and educational round pen demonstrations.
Spend your Valentine's Day admiring tattoos and piercings at the Body Art Expo, which will be held at the Arizona State Fairgrounds February 14 to 16. This weekend gathering brings together more than 100 tattoo artists and piercers for exhibitions, shopping, and contests. The traveling Body Art Expo, dubbed the "world's largest tattoo convention," also features tattoo contests, live entertainment (including tattooing demonstrations), food, and beer.
On February 15, the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team's fan appreciation day will take over Chase Field. The free event features clinics, autograph signings, photo opportunities, ballpark tours, and giveaways as well as a chance for kids to walk on the field where their favorite D-backs play all season long.
Each February, Arizona Cocktail Week provides locals and tourists the opportunity to sample some of the best cocktails Phoenix has to offer. In 2020, the boozy festival will take place over President's Day weekend, February 15 to 17, when cocktail enthusiasts, aspiring mixologists, and industry veterans all mix and mingle together. The event also offers multiple tastings, competitions, and seminars at various venues throughout the city.
Hundreds of cowboys, cowgirls, and buckaroos compete in Old West-style shooting events with displays, vendors, and exhibitions on the side at the Winter Range from February 24 to March 1, 2020. The event kicks off with a mandatory safety meeting for all participants followed by the first round of Wild Bunch Action Shooting. The event also features a swap meet, a variety of gun demonstrations, and a special Cowboy Church service on Sunday.
The 56th Annual Lost Dutchman Days Rodeo returns to Apache Junction on February 28 for three days of professional and amateur rodeo competitions, as well as a carnival with more than 30 rides and attractions. Music and dancing, a parade, arts and crafts, and gold-panning demonstrations are also included.
NHRA Drag Racing Nationals
The National Hot Rod Association hosts the Arizona Nationals of drag racing in Phoenix every year. This "duel in the desert" takes place at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Chandler from February 21 to 23. Whether you're a long-time fan of the sport or have never been to a drag race, this event is the place to see the country's biggest drag racing stars.
The PHX Vegan Food Festival on February 29, 2020, is an outdoor, family-friendly festival with vegan food trucks, restaurants, and other vendors in downtown Phoenix. It features demonstrations and presentations by chefs, vegan experts, live music, and a kids' activity area outside of the Phoenix Art Museum.