Six events that have nothing to do with Santa, elves, gifts or trees

click to enlarge Dance in your seat on Dec. 9.
Dance in your seat on Dec. 9.

By Inlander Staff

Nov. 29

RICK STEVES: TRAVEL AS A POLITICAL ACT

Public television's favorite traveling dad figure from Edmonds, Washington, is stopping in Spokane to talk about how going somewhere far away can become an act of resistance and enlightenment, versus something done for pure entertainment or escape from our world at home. Steves is set to discuss his book Travel as a Political Act, including suggestions for ways to authentically connect and immerse oneself in a foreign culture. The presentation includes the option for a VIP pre-show ($40) reception at Terra Blanca Wine Bar. Come to get inspired to travel and broaden your own perspectives of the world in the coming year. Copies of the book and others by Steves will be for sale before and during the event, and make for timely gift ideas. Bing Crosby Theater, $10-$40, 7 pm, bingcrosbytheater.com (CHEY SCOTT)

Dec. 9

SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE LIVE!

You've watched the show, now you're ready to capture the moves that made season 15 of the dance series one of its most memorable ever live and in person. Lucky for you the "new" First Interstate Center for the Arts is open again in time to host dancers like Jensen Arnold, Chelsea Hough, Cole Mills and many more with its new, wider seats and brand new sound system. Forget watching these fleet-footed folks on your tiny TV screen — the live-on-stage experience is how you can really tell if these folks can dance. Answer: Yes, they can. First Interstate Center for the Arts, $31.50-$67, 6:30 pm, inbpac.com (DAN NAILEN)

Dec. 14

MYLES KENNEDY & CO.

Spokane loves it when a hometown kid makes good, and few have found as much success as Myles Kennedy. The singer/guitarist and his band the Mayfield Four scored a deal with Epic Records while they were still based in the Inland Northwest, and he reached international audiences fronting the hard rock outfit Alter Bridge and collaborating with Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash. Now Kennedy has begun a new chapter of his career with the release of his first solo album, Year of the Tiger, and it finds him applying his soaring, arena-ready vocals to folky, twangy instrumentation. It's a new sound for Kennedy, but surely Spokane will take to it with open arms. Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox, $38-$60, 8 pm, foxtheaterspokane.org (NATHAN WEINBENDER)

Dec. 28

ZOSO — THE ULTIMATE LED ZEPPELIN EXPERIENCE

There's only so much Christmas music a person can handle during December. You reach a breaking point and need an aural cleanser to get your brain right from all the saccharine-sweet holiday music you've been inundated with for weeks, maybe even months. Consider Zoso your cleanser this year. The Led Zeppelin tribute band has performed thousands of shows since forming 23 years ago, and the pomp and bombast inherent in the mighty Zep's songs should help you push all the Little Drummer Boys and Frosty the Snowmen out of your head for another year. Knitting Factory, $20, 7:30 pm, sp.knittingfactory.com (DN)

Dec. 29

WASHINGTON STATE VS. SANTA CLARA MEN'S BASKETBALL

Keeping the family entertained during the holidays can be a challenge, especially during that week between Christmas and New Year's when there's no more shopping to be done. The Cougars are here to help with their annual basketball pilgrimage to Spokane Arena. This year, coach Ernie Kent's charges take on a foe familiar to Gonzaga fans, the Santa Clara Broncos, a team that recently took out a full-page ad in Spokane's daily newspaper to declare themselves up to the task of competing with the Zags. They'll have to knock off the Cougs first, and with tickets as cheap as $10, it won't break the bank to take the whole family. Spokane Arena, $10-$60, 11 am, spokanearena.com (DN)

Dec. 31

AFROLICIOUS

Why not ring in 2019 with a bit of old-school funk? Afrolicious will transport you back to an era when anyone who was someone wore bell bottoms and Stevie Wonder was the biggest star in the world. The San Franciscans and former Elkfest headliners consider themselves more of a musical collective than a traditional band, and it's easy to see why: They've had dozens of members over the years, led by the self-proclaimed Pleasuremaker and his brother, known as Señor Oz. This retro R&B act puts on a party you won't wanna miss. The Hive, $25-$35, 9:30 pm, livefromthehive.com (NW) ♦

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