PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The city of Providence will be a hotbed of activity this weekend as NCAA Tournament action resumes and a number of popular events will be held.
As the second round of the Big Dance gets underway, Miami will take on Wichita State at 12:10 p.m. and Duke will take on Yale at 2:40 p.m.
All four teams will hold practices at the Dunk on Friday, but those won’t be open to the public.
Larry Lepore with the Dunkin Donuts Center said Duke, the defending champs, always bring a great crowd – but Yale’s win might mean an influx of new visitors since the school is only two hours away.
“They’re going to be here in droves, they’re going to be looking for tickets no doubt about it,” he said.
Lepore said many fans of the losing teams will be trying to sell their tickets to the games on Saturday.
“Pay attention to who you’re buying from try to get information from them,” Lepore said.
On Friday night, a special edition of WaterFire will be held downtown, which includes the Slam Dunk Basketball shootout competition in Union Plaza. Lighting for WaterFire is scheduled for 7:16 p.m.
“So many people coming into town, they’ve heard about Providence,” said Barnaby Evans of WaterFire. “This is the night in between the games and they just want to have a good time.”
Aside from the NCAA action on Saturday, Providence will also be hosting the St. Pat’s 5k at 11 a.m. followed by the St. Pat’s Parade at noon.
As a result of the celebrations, RIPTA will be detouring 15 Providence routes from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Providence College Friars defeated USC in heart-stopping fashion Thursday night to advance. They’ll take on the top-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels Saturday night.
What you need to know about Providence
Those heading into the city should expect traffic delays and limited parking. A number of street closures and detours are in place and the parking lots and garages will fill up fast.
Also, worth noting that the city suspended the open container law in some areas, allowing people to walk the street with alcohol in hand. The Dunk, however, will be alcohol-free during the games in accordance with NCAA rules.
For those hoping to try and score some last-minute tickets, Attorney General Peter Kilmartin advises you to only buy tickets from the NCAA or an NCAA-approved re-seller, since the ones for sale on websites such as Craigslist could be stolen, counterfeit, or priced far above face value.
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Also, the Rhode Show On the Go app is a must-have if you’re looking for more fun events and great local food.Will the weather hold up?
For Friday, the Pinpoint Weather Team expects it will be partly to mostly cloudy with a few brief afternoon rain showers. Saturday looks drier but cooler, with highs in the low to mid-40s.
Sunday is the real weather headline for both locals and visitors traveling home. There’s the potential for snow starting in the afternoon, which could become heavier and steadier at night.
- Looking Ahead: Detailed 7-Day Futurecast
- On the Go: Download the Pinpoint Weather App
- Flight Info: WPRI.com Flight Tracker
PC will have a day to get some more practice in before they have to match up against UNC Saturday night. It will surely be a tough outing for the Friars as the Tar Heels are not only the top seed in the East, but it’s also essentially a home game for them down in Raleigh. Tipoff is scheduled for 9:40 p.m. on TBS.
- More: Friars prepping for USC matchup
- Tournament Predictions: Providence vs. USC
- Related: PC’s Kris Dunn spurned the NBA for this moment