With July ending, so too do many Summer vacations as August is about to arrive.

Across the Valley, families are either scrambling before the start of school or off and running, already conquering the classroom! If this is your last week at play, make the most of it with this week's events...

As you get ready for another successful year at school, our hometown football favorite ― the Arizona Cardinals ― have their pads and helmets out preparing too! 

Catch the Cards in action inside the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale for Training Camp 2017. On Monday, July 31 from 2 - 4:30 p.m., watch your favorite, as well as prospective players show what they got during open practice sessions! This event, as well as parking, are FREE. For a complete listing of dates and event details during Training Camp 2017, click HERE

Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2017

Harry Potter 20th Anniversary Celebration

  • Where: Meeting Room at Century Library, 1750 E. Highland Ave., Phoenix 
  • When: Pre-showing activity, noon - 1 p.m.; screening from 1:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
  • Cost: FREE

Come celebrate 20 years of "the boy who lived!" 

Since its blockbuster beginning, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone has been enchanting readers.

An afternoon of magic awaits children and teens up to 18 years old. Beginning at noon, young wizards and witches conjure their very own wand. After crafting, stick around for a special screening of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone starting at 1:30 p.m. Enjoy this interactive movie experience to be immersed in the wizarding world!  

Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017

Teen Chillout!

  • Where: VTL Meeting Room & Teen Zone at Velma Teague Branch Library, 7010 N. 58th Ave., Glendale
  • When: 3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
  • Cost: FREE

School might be in session, but when the final bell rings, where does your kid go?

Students aged 10 - 18, are invited to chill out at the Teague! The Velma Teague Branch Library is Glendale's coolest hangout to escape to after a long day spent at school. Of course, you could catch up on homework or study for that math quiz, but feel free to relax, play on tablets and games or just slip in to socialize!  

 Friday, Aug. 4, 2017

Cards and Games at El Dorado Park

  • Where: El Dorado Park, 2311 N. Miller Rd., Scottsdale 
  • When: 9 a.m. - noon
  • Cost: FREE

Bust out the game boards, pour out the pieces or deal out the deck of cards for this summer's LAST Friday game day at the El Dorado Park Center!

Enjoy a morning of friendly competition, meet a friend and socialize amongst those 18 and older. Participants can play chess, cards and Scrabble with other fun activities and games from 9 a.m. to noon. 

Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017

Prowl & Play - Dinosaurs!

  • Where: Phoenix Zoo, 455 N. Galvin Pkwy, Phoenix  
  • When: 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
  • Cost: General admission $8, member admission $6

On Aug. 5, Prowl & Play returns to the Phoenix Zoo in August with Dinosaurs! 

Soar in or stomp on over to experience a Jurassic park. There will be face painting, interactive dinosaur meet and greets, activities like fossil digs and crafts from that Scottsdale Arts and Zoo Crew. Check out live robot demonstrations with Plasma Robotics. DJ Rockin' Rob will keep the jamming all night while the kids compete in games for prehistoric prizes at the Dino Arcade or while keeping cool on the splash pads and water slides, plus much more!

Some zoo exhibits will be closed for this event. Adults can grab a cold glass or wine at Thunder Lizard Lounge, and the whole family can avoid extinction with treats and food from select zoo eateries. 

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Kristopher Yanez is the proud father of 1-year-old daughter Kennedy, a journalism student at Pima Community College and is also the first-ever Bear Essential News Summer Reporting Intern. When Kris is not doing school work, he is off chasing after young Kennedy.