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Rick Springfield Performs for Verrado Community’s 10th Anniversary

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A crowd of nearly 4,000 residents and friends from the Verrado community came out to celebrate the community’s 10th anniversary on Saturday, April 5. Bouncy houses, kettle corn, a rock climbing wall, and glow lights made the experience enjoyable for children and a nice outing for parents. Nothing compared to the excitement that filled the area when Rick Springfield appeared onstage. The crowd went wild with fans who have admired the icon since their teeny bopper years. The musician shared songs from his latest album, Songs for the End of the World, like “I Hate Myself,” “Our Ship is Sinking,” and “You & Me.” He even did a cover of Katy Perry’s “Roar.” Visuals in the background showed clips of him performing in the 80’s and other videos clips representing the songs he played throughout the concert. Toward the end of the night, he performed the infamous “Jessie’s Girl” by first providing a montage of the movies and TV Shows that have used the song and then allowing the crowd to sing along with him. After the show, community members that won tickets to have a meet-and-greet with Springfield took pictures and received autographs on memorabilia they had saved over the years. AFM sat down with Springfield to ask him more about his achievements and what the Valley can look forward to next.

AFM: How have you been enjoying your time in Arizona? What do you like to do while you’re here?

RS: I like to sleep, I like to play concerts, and eat at a nice Japanese restaurant. We landed this morning at 10 a.m., had a sound check, did the show, and now we’re going to go out to dinner. People think you have a lot of time on the road, but you really don’t. We get invited to play tennis all the time though.

AFM: Can you tell us what the Valley can expect from your summer tour with Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo in July?

RS: It’s going be a great show. I’ve known them for years; we recorded “Jessie’s Girl.” I’m surprised it took this long to figure it all out. All the songs are great; both bands are really strong. So it’s all going to be seeing who can kick whose butt.

AFM: Congratulations on receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. When can we expect to see your name on the infamous sidewalk?

RS: May 16. My first novel, “Magnificent Vibration,” is coming out May 6 so we’re going to be doing a promo collaboration with the star. The star is going out in front of the Live Nation Building.

AFM: What has been the highlight of your career so far?

RS: I don’t think that’s happened yet. Maybe the first time I played “Jessie’s Girl” and the crowd roared because they recognized. I used to be that kid in the audience doing that for every other band when I was young. So experiencing that for a song I wrote was pretty memorable.


Top Ten Things to Do This Weekend in Phoenix

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Looking to beat the heat this weekend? Well, we’re not so sure we can do that for you but we can certainly suggest things to keep your mind off of the scorching summer ahead! From football to butterflies there’s nothing we haven’t covered for this weekend’s top ten things to do in the Valley. Here are our picks for Apr. 17-Apr. 20.  


Chandler Center for the Arts Celebrates 25 Years

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The Chandler Center for the Arts’ passionate commitment to the arts continues to grow as they celebrate 25 years of inspiring audiences of all ages to dream and create. The center provides the finest in performing arts with superb acoustical setting, a unique turntable design, and annual exhibitions. Here, AFM takes a look inside the upcoming season at the Chandler Center for the Arts.


Best High Tea in Phoenix

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Afternoon tea may be a British tradition, but these fabulous places will entice you with tasty teas, sandwiches, and desserts you won’t want to pass up. See AFM’s best places for high tea, and make a reservation just in time for Mother’s Day.


Earth Day Checklist

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Are you looking to make your own contribution to the environment in honor of Earth Day (April 22) this year? Being a good global citizen starts right at your doorstep. Making a few small changes around the house can dramatically reduce greenhouse gases, save you money, and add up to a real benefit for the environment. Here are some tips to help you do your part in supporting Mother Nature:


1. Change your lights. Replacing only your five most frequently used light fixtures with Energy Star qualified products will help the environment while saving an average of $70 a year on energy bills. Energy Star lighting provides bright, warm light while generating less heat, less energy, and lasts about 10 to 50 times longer than other standard lighting.


2. Heat and cool your house properly. Simple steps like changing air filters regularly, making sure your thermostat is properly programmed, and maintaining your heating and cooling equipment annually by a licensed contractor can save energy and increase comfort, while protecting the environment. If you choose to use Energy Star equipment, it could cut down your annual energy bill by more than $200. Sealing and insulating your home can increase your comfort while reducing air leaks which can save an average of 20 percent on heating and cooling.


3. Reduce, reuse, and recycle. Doing this in your home will help conserve major energy and reduce pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from resource extraction, manufacturing, and disposal of waste. Goods like newspapers, beverage containers, paper, and other items are perfect for recycling. Visit the EPA's Individual Waste Reduction Model (iWARM) to learn more about the benefits of recycling rather than sending all your trash to the landfill.


4. Manage your household emissions. Click here to see the list of options for residents in Arizona. These renewable generation systems for energy are available for installation, and help save toxic emissions that other power sources may emit. Using the EPA's Household Greenhouse Gas Emissions Calculator is also a handy tool you can use to estimate your household greenhouse emissions that come from energy use, transportation, and waste disposal. This helps you understand where your emissions come from and can help you even further identify ways to reduce them.


5. Clean green. Stop buying household cleaners that are potentially toxic to both you and the environment. In his book, "The Safe Shopper's Bible," David Steinman suggests reading labels for specific, eco-friendly ingredients that also perform effectively. These include grain alcohol instead of toxic butyl cellosolve, commonly found in carpet cleaner and some window cleaners as a solvent; coconut or other plant oils rather than petroleum in detergents; and plant-oil disinfectants such as eucalyptus, rosemary or sage rather than triclosan, an antifungal agent found in soaps and deodorant. Or, skip buying altogether and make your own cleaning products. Use simple ingredients such as plain soap, water, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), vinegar, washing soda (sodium carbonate), lemon juice and borax and save money at the same time.


6. A "Green Home Makeover." Do you want to remodel your home this year? For new hardwood floors, bamboo is the right choice. It is considered an environmentally friendly flooring material due to its high yield and the relatively fast rate at which it replenishes itself. It takes just four to six years for bamboo to mature, compared to 50-100 years for typical hardwoods. Just be sure to look for sources that use formaldehyde-free glues. Don't forget to repaint with a healthier type of paint. Conventional paints contain solvents, toxic metals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can cause smog, ozone pollution and indoor air quality problems with negative health effects, according to the EPA. These unhealthy ingredients are released into the air while you’re painting, while the paint dries and even after the paints are completely dry. Opt instead for zero- or low-VOC paint, made by most major paint manufacturers today.

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