Top November events for families in greater Phoenix

The Desert Botanical Garden lights up during Las Noches de las Luminarias Nov. 24-Dec. 30.

November is a time to gather with family and friends. This month, festivals abound celebrating Arizona’s arts and culture. Grab your appetite and a light jacket (for those cool desert nights) and enjoy making family memories.

Find more extensive day-by-day event listings at

Madagascar: A Musical Adventure (Oct. 28-Nov. 19). Valley Youth Theatre brings this musical romp, based on the DreamWorks animated film, to the Herberger in downtown Phoenix.

Education Fair AZ (Saturday, Nov. 4) at Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort.

Education Fair AZ (Nov. 4). Start your hunt for the best school at this second-annual drop-in event. Meet with representatives from private, public and charter schools. Meet a surprise guest from the Phoenix Zoo and get a free copy of “Schools, etc.,” RAK’s annual directory of K-12 schools in greater Phoenix.

Arizona Fall Fest (Nov. 4).  Show your Arizona pride at this family-friendly event celebrating all things local — shops, restaurants, entertainers and even Arizona-made wine, beer and spirits.

Herberger Theater Festival of the Arts (Nov. 4). Celebrate the arts at this event featuring performances, dancing, live music, children’s activities, pet adoptions, food and vendors.

Touch-A-Truck (Nov. 4). Kids can spend the day in the driver’s seat of a firetruck, police cruiser, construction truck, helicopter and more. The Junior League of Phoenix hosts this hands-on event.

Tempe Book Festival (Nov. 4). This page-turning event celebrates reading and writing by bringing together local authors, publishers and booksellers.

Wild West Days Parade (Nov. 4). Enjoy one of Arizona’s largest Western celebrations with a parade through downtown Cave Creek, plus bathtub races, pie-eating contests and gunfight reenactments.

Shemer Arizona Arts Festival (Nov. 4-5). Shop dozens of Arizona artists’ one-of-a-kind works and see glass-blowing, flame-throwing and pottery demonstrations, plus children’s art activities, live music and food.

Dia de los Muertos (Saturday-Sunday Nov. 4-5) at the Desert Botanical Garden.

Dia de los Muertos (Nov. 4-5). All ages. Honor departed loved ones with an Ofrenda exhibition, Mexican food, mercado, live entertainment and activities at the Desert Botanical Garden.

Lego Star Wars Days (Nov. 4-5). Legoland Discovery Center hosts Star Wars with themed build competitions, a Lego Darth Vader group build and more. Costumes encouraged!

National Doughnut Day (Nov. 5). Glazed, powdered, chocolate or sprinkles? We do-nut want you to forget that Sunday is National Doughnut Day.

Arizona Musicfest Young Musicians Concert (Nov. 5). Arizona Musicfest is proud to showcase the state’s brightest young classical musicians in a concert that will delight, impress and entertain.

Chiles and Chocolate Festival (Nov. 10-12). Enjoy samples from Arizona’s top chili and chocolate vendors plus live performances of Brazilian, Caribbean and Latin music and dance at the Desert Botanical Garden.

City of Phoenix Veterans Day Parade (Nov. 11). This year’s annual event includes eight veteran Grand Marshals representing each era of military service from World War II to today.

Kids and adults can test award-winning holiday toys at Kidstop.

Kidstop Toy Expo (Nov. 11). Kids and parents can do hands-on testing of some of the season’s hottest toys outside this longtime local store.

Once Upon a Fall Ball (Nov. 11). Be transported to a faraway land as the Children’s Museum of Phoenix hosts its annual fairytale ball with princesses and Prince Charming, glitter tattoos and more.

AZ Children’s Business Fair (Nov. 11). This is a great place for kids to do some holiday shopping and learn about business from young entrepreneurs! Explore 125 booths as kids sell everything from treats to slime!

Free Entrance Day at National Parks (Nov. 11-12). The National Park Service offers free admission to more than 400 parks across the country this Veterans Day weekend.

Happy Birthday, Mickey Mouse! (Nov. 18). Our favorite mouse made his debut in “Steamboat Willie” at a premiere in New York City on Nov. 18, 1928.

Harvest Festival (Nov. 18-19). Fall is in the air at this small-scale amusement park in downtown Phoenix. Kids will love hayrides, bounce houses, a petting zoo, train rides and more.

“Pompeii: The Exhibition” at Arizona Science Center (Nov. 18-May 24). Learn about life in Pompeii both before and after the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius at the Arizona Science Center’s new immersive international exhibition.

Zoo Lights (Nov. 22-Jan. 14) at the Phoenix Zoo.

ZooLights (Nov. 22-Jan. 14). The Valley’s brightest holiday tradition returns to the Phoenix Zoo. Millions of lights shine throughout the grounds, along with a three-story holiday tree, carousel and camel rides, lakeside music-in-motion shows, nightly snowfall and photos with Santa Claus.

Happy Thanksgiving! (Nov. 23). RAK is thankful for our readers. Thank you for turning to our pages when you need resources, inspiration and ideas for family fun.

PJ Masks Live! (Friday, Nov. 24) at Comerica Theatre.

“PJ Masks Live!” (Nov. 24). It’s time to be a superhero! This live show includes plenty of leaping, flipping and climbing, along with music from the animated Disney Jr. show.

Las Noches de las Luminarias (Nov. 24-Dec. 30). Desert Botanical Garden comes to life with more than 8,000 luminarias, thousands of white twinkle lights and the sights and sounds of local entertainment ensembles.

Glendale Glitters Spectacular Weekend (Nov. 24-25). Sixteen blocks of downtown Glendale light up with 1.5 million twinkling lights.