Cocktails & Classics is a fashion show, party and marketing bonanza all rolled into one at the Tucson Mall. The Friday night event is the second annual edition of the Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance brainchild.
Revelers pay $35 to take in a fashion show, with models strutting Dillard's attire, sample foods and drinks from nearby restaurants, and listen to big band music. Mall retailers, jewelers, salons and restaurants see it as a creative way to show off their wares.
Attendees can dance and listen to the 16-member Memories Big Band, which will play music from the likes of Glenn Miller and Duke Ellington.
"It's going to be a lot of fun," said KOLD traffic reporter Joan Lee, who will model clothing at the event. "I'm just going to walk the catwalk and maybe dance to that great music. It looks like a lot of fun, and that's what attracted me to it."
Although Lee is no stranger to the public eye, she's nervous about modeling because of inexperience.
"I'll just close my eyes, hold my breath, walk and hope it's over quickly," she said.
Food is one of the event's main draws. Sir Veza's Taco Garage, for instance, is showing off its small-sized "street tacos," as well as a prickly pear margarita.
"It's kind of fun to watch," said Sir Veza's marketing manager, Adriana Ocampo, recalling last year's event. "We kind of mingled around, tried food, had some drinks and things like that. It's always fun to just try different things and expand your palate."
Dillard's store manager Steve Dohm said he's hoping to show off the store's clothing lines.
"Any time we do fashion shows, we try to stick with trends," Dohm said. "We try to stick with big brands at our store. We want variety, with the big colors of the season. Mint is a big color this year."
Dohm said the models have input on the clothing they wear.
"If we don't put things out in front of customers when we have opportunities, it feels like we've missed out," Dohm said. "It sounds like a great show to me."
If you go
• What: Cocktails & Classics.
• When: 5:30-9 p.m. Friday.
• Where: Tucson Mall, south end outdoor plaza, 4500 N. Oracle Road.
• Admission $35, includes food, runway show, cocktails and a goody bag with coupons and samples.
• Phone: 797-3959.
Contact reporter Phil Villarreal at 573-4130 or firstname.lastname@example.org