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Experiencing the vibrant life of Downtown Phoenix

By Kaylin King

First Fridays in Phoenix are a necessary experience. What better way to learn about your city than to dive directly into it? Submerging into the culture of Roosevelt Row will give anyone a new perspective of the community and opens up a great opportunity to discover local talent.

For anyone who has no idea what I’m talking about, First Fridays are vibrant art walks in downtown and midtown Phoenix happening on the first Friday of every month (imagine that). Roosevelt Row is at the heart of the event. It spreads throughout the art district of Phoenix, filling the city with street art, live performers, gallery exhibits, food trucks and passionate locals.

I had been a few times before, but this First Friday was the first time I attended as an ASU student, and it was different. Now that I am living downtown, learning the ropes and getting used to my urban environment, First Friday really helped me do this. Who knew I had all these great things right outside my doorstep? Walking around the community opened my eyes to how beautiful of a place I get to spend the most important years of my life growing and learning.


The first thing that hit me was how full of life the environment made me feel. You really get every culture, every walk of life, every style. Everyone was so vibrant. You can feel the passion from everyone. with so many creative people in one place, it’s palpable. There are so many different forms of art. I walked by someone free styling to a beat made by his friend next to him, and one block we listened to a live indie band across the street from a man on the drums. There was graffiti art next to watercolor, and statue galleries alongside passionate photography. Phoenix is full of so many talented locals all with fore for their unique craft.

I, of course, was stuck at all the local boutique booths. There were so many styles, and I’m certain I would be able to find a staple piece to be obsessed with at all off them. Hats, sweaters, rings, necklaces, bags… so many choices. The best part about these boutiques is how exclusive you can turn your look. You can support a local shop and not be wearing the same Forever 21 top as 20 other girls at school. 

All photos by Kaylin King

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