ZOOcson 2021. Reid Park Zoo is bringing back one of their largest events with food, entertainment and auctions. This year’s gala is inspired by the zoo’s new African wild dog pack. It benefits the zoo, and you get to learn all about exocit animals. Everyone’s a winner. 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 8. 3400 Zoo Court. reidparkzoo.org
Yume Japanese Gardens Reopens. This year, which has so far been about three decades long, but simultaneously 14 seconds long, has felt weird. We could all use some Zen energy and a little bit of a mental reset, which is why we’re so excited for this reopening! And in tandem with the tiniest, most hopeful glimmer of cooler weather on the horizon? Wonderful. Come on down to stroll through the serene gardens at Yume. If you’re really looking for a treat, sign up for their Path to Emotional Healing Program, where you’ll learn to reflect on your own stories to enable yourself to thrive. Yume Japanese Gardens is located at 2130 N. Alvernon Way. Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thursday to Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays. $13 GA, $10 seniors, $9 students/military, $6 kids 3 to 15.
Puppet Cabaret. Everyone knows that the best puppet shows aren’t just funny: They’re also philosophical, musical and recommended for adults and older teens. Red Herring Puppets is putting on this grownup puppet slam for two weekends only, and we do not recommend missing it. The show is a series of short vignettes performed by talented local puppeteers, and you’ll get a chance to see a variety of puppet styles putting on several types of performances. 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 1, 2, 8 and 9. Red Herring Puppets, Tucson Mall, 4500 N. Oracle Road (upper level between Macy’s and Forever 21). $12 for reservations.
Día de los Muertos at Tohono Chul. Modern celebrations of this holiday, which recognizes and celebrates death, are a rich and beautiful part of Tucson’s cultural heritage. This exhibit features 61 works from 42 different Arizona artists, who bring the spirit of the holiday to life in works with both personal and universal meaning. Manuel Fontes, who studied fine art photography at Phoenix College and earned his BA and MA in ecological anthropology from ASU, is joining Tohono Chul’s team as co-curator for the exhibit. His art has been shown in 11 Tohono Chul exhibitions since 2015. On display through Nov. 8 at Tohono Chul, 7366 Paseo del Norte. Galleries open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. $15 adult entry, $13 seniors/military, $6 kids ages 5 to 12.