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Uptown detours continue

CarolinaFest is today; road, sidewalk closings shift. But calm Sunday spurs optimism

CHARLOTTE, N.C. Another day, another street configuration.

If you’re heading uptown Monday, be prepared for extensive road closings that include Tryon Street between Carson Boulevard and Sixth Street and many additional streets around Time Warner Arena. (See Page 10A for pedestrian and vehicle street closing maps.)

Starting Monday, CATS will also be operating from a temporary transit center at Third and Mint streets.

The traffic detours are related to Democratic National Convention events, including Monday’s CarolinaFest. The festival features a parade and free entertainment, including North Carolina’s own James Taylor.

Rain and thunderstorms may dampen the Labor Day festivities. The National Weather Service reports a 60 percent chance of rain, with thunderstorms likely, mainly after 4 p.m.

On Sunday afternoon, workers labored in 90-plus degree to assemble stages and erect tents for the festival.

And optimism was the mood at several uptown restaurants, where workers were preparing for good sales this week, despite road closings.

Crowds were about twice the typical Sunday at American Roadside Burgers on Church Street, partner Doug Allen said. He attributed the rush partly to DNC setup crews as well as hungry protesters who dropped in after the March on Wall Street South.

At Newk’s Express Café on North Tryon Street, workers passed out pasta salad and chicken salad samples to CarolinaFest workers and passers-by. Manager Colin Demby hopes for about a 35 percent bump in business.

Champions Restaurant at Charlotte Marriott City Center also is prepared. The hotel is booked solid, said Gary Oikemus, the hotel’s operations director. “I think Charlotte is going to give them a heck of show.”

Though thousands of visitors began arriving in Charlotte Saturday, there’s been no uptick in crime. In fact, fewer people – a total of 37 – were arrested in Mecklenburg County between 6 p.m. Saturday and 6 a.m. Sunday morning than during the same period the previous weekend, when 65 were arrested.

No major incidents

Local officials also reported no major problems Sunday. One California delegate was hospitalized briefly after passing out, apparently intoxicated, at the Blake Hotel. Medic responded to eight heat-related calls. Of those, one person was transported to Carolinas Medical Center.

Two protesters attending Sunday’s March on Wall Street South were arrested. Charges included resisting arrest, assault on an officer and disorderly conduct.

Police continue to investigate two concrete cylinders that an officer discovered on South Tryon Street over Interstate 277 before the start of the protest march. Elisabeth Arriero, Adam Bell and Brittany Penland contributed.

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