Welcome to the weekend, Arizona!
It’s been one heck of a week. Here’s what you need to know to kick back and relax this weekend.
What to expect: traffic and weather
The Phoenix area was slammed by monsoon storms Thursday evening, leaving thousands without power. With the storms came a tornado, a rarity for the Valley, which was spotted south of downtown Phoenix. Cleanup continued on Friday and into the weekend. This weekend will offer the Valley a respite from monsoon rains, and the Phoenix Zoo will be open again at 7 a.m Saturday after closing Friday to clean up after the storm.
— Saturday: Mostly sunny and clear with a high near 104. Lows are expected to dip into the 70s.
— Sunday: Much of the same: sunny and mostly clear with a high near 104.
There are a few freeway improvement projects requiring closures or lane restrictions in the Phoenix area this weekend, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation. Here is what to look for:
— Interstate 10 at 59th Avenue: Westbound I-10 is closed at 59th Avenue from 10 p.m. Friday to 2 p.m. Saturday. Westbound I-10 on-ramps at 43rd and 51st avenues are also closed.
— Interstate 10 near 59th Avenue: Westbound I-10 is narrowed to one lane near 59th Avenue from 9 p.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Monday for bridge construction.
— Interstate 17 between Bethany Home Road and Glendale Avenue: Northbound I-17 is narrowed to two lanes between Bethany Home Road and Glendale Avenue from 5 a.m. to noon Saturday.
— Interstate 17 near Indian School Road: Southbound I-17 is narrowed to two lanes near Indian School Road from 9 p.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Monday.
What to do
Stay in, go out, grab some grub and enjoy yourself.
— It’s not an especially fun weekend for new movies, but there are a couple good movies to choose from and one really terrible. See which movie Bill Goodykoontz said even Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey couldn’t salvage.
— Looking for a new place to eat out? See our list of restaurants that opened last month in metro Phoenix.
— Dining critic Dominic Armato took a trip up to Flagstaff to try Coppa Cafe. He called the cafe “one of Arizona’s essential restaurants.” Here is his full review.
— Unfortunately, the Arizona Cardinals lost to the Dallas Cowboys in Thursday’s Pro Football Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio. Instead of rubbing salt in the wound, how about we focus on Kurt Warner’s induction into the Hall of Fame?
— Earlier this week, we reported that Major League Baseball officials are so alarmed at the condition of Chase Field that they might require the Diamondbacks to leave Phoenix unless repairs are made. Do you have a favorite memory from Diamondbacks’ stadium? Here are some of our readers’ favorites.
Where to go
Arizona history is rife with tales of hidden mines and buried treasure. Even today, those hoping to strike it rich head out with maps and shovels, despite tremendous odds against them. Scott Craven/The Republic
It’s back-to-school season in the Valley. Quick! Before things get too hectic, satisfy your wanderlust!
— Here is a slew of events to allow kids and families one last chill-out before getting back to the school-year grind.
— Taking selfies at the Grand Canyon is a right of passage for any intrepid traveler. But did you know the Grand Canyon’s selfie history goes back over 100 years?
— You don’t have to travel to Flagstaff to experience a lush hike in the summer. Rio Salado trails offer an abundance of greenery not far from downtown Phoenix.
Staying in? Here are some good reads
WHAT YOU MAY HAVE MISSED
On Thursday, azcentral.com hosted Sen. John McCain in our newsroom and let readers ask questions. In case you missed it, here is our entire 20-minute live interview with the senator.
Other stories you may have missed:
— A change in federal funding my imperil a program for homeless veterans at Phoenix’s largest shelter for single adults. The shelter believes it could lose a roughly $500,000 grant.
— This barber shop in the heart of downtown Chandler is as old as the state. Read how the business has changed over its 100-plus-year history.
— A group of men who work for a drilling company became heroes after saving a couple stranded on the roof of their car by floodwaters. Watch the nail-biting rescue captured on video.
FROM OUR ARCHIVES
Kick back and dive into these long reads from our archives.
— A 20-year-old Massachusetts woman who urged her boyfriend via text message to kill himself was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison this week. Here is what a Phoenix mother who watched her 12-year-old son kill himself wants you to know.
— In May, a Yuma man convicted of murdering six people in 2005 was sentenced to death. It was the largest mass murder in the city’s history. Read about the victims, the case and the twists and turns in what’s known as the La Mesa Street killings.
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