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What you need to know for Friday, July 29

Once again, today will be a hot one, 10Weather WTSP reports. The morning will be clear, giving way to widespread storms throughout the afternoon and evening.

• Sure it's only July, but teachers across the Tampa Bay area return to work in just a few days and classes begin shortly after that. Check out the Times' back-to-school coverage, which debuts today with information on the exceptionally early start, registration, Florida's tax holiday, back-to-school events and more.

• And in the time remaining before school starts, we have some suggestions on ways to unplug and find some fun outside, hunting for shark's teeth or exploring the largest natural wilderness area in Pinellas County.

• The middle class, once the largest swath of Americans, is shrinking at an alarming rate. Both presidential candidates, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, have made that part of their platform. Times business columnist breaks down what's happening to the middle class. It will be published in the late morning at tampabay.com/business.

• It's actually happening. Guns N' Roses take the stage in Orlando tonight — a miracle, given all the bad blood over the past 25 years. In his look at the weekend's top concerts, pop music critic Jay Cridlin lays out the most shocking revelations about the GNR reunion tour (the reviews are pretty good!).

• Joe Lopano, CEO of Tampa International Airport, checked another major box off his to-do list this week when he and his team landed a nonstop flight to San Francisco, a route the airport had long coveted. That marks a string of accomplishments for Lopano, who also has obtained several international flights in the last several years. So what's next for TIA? And for Lopano? Read business reporter Justine Griffin's story, which will be published late morning, at tampabay.com/business.

• As the fight over the estate of Joy Culverhouse continues, Times business reporter Susan Taylor Martin explores how often families fight over their loved ones' money and things. It happens quite often, especially when there is so much at stake — as is the case with the estate of Culverhouse, the widow of former Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Hugh Culverhouse, in which tens of millions of dollars are in question. Read the full story, which will be published in the late morning, at tampabay.com/business.

• Here are the top things to do today in Tampa Bay, including Babe Ruth's grandson donating a baseball to a local museum and mixologists battling in Margarita Wars.

• Wallet a little light? Here's this week's list of 5 things to do under $5 including free entrance to Bucs training camps and a "dive-in" movie at a local pool showing Disney Pixar's Inside Out.

 Jennifer Casteel place welcoming packets for her students on desks in her classroom at Spring Hill Elementary School Tuesday August 12, 2014.

DEMETRIUS FREEMAN | Times

Jennifer Casteel place welcoming packets for her students on desks in her classroom at Spring Hill Elementary School Tuesday August 12, 2014.

What you need to know for Friday, July 29 07/29/16 [Last modified: Friday, July 29, 2016 1:22pm]
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  1. Where are Orlando's beaches? Pinellas tourism pitch urges visitors to head west

    Tourism

    For years, Florida's Space Coast has been known as Orlando's beaches.

    Pinellas tourism officials hope to lure Orlando visitors to Clearwater Beach and other West coast beaches in a new summertime campaign.
[DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times
 file]

  2. VIDEO: Driver describes watching a sinkhole swallow his Toyota Camry

    Nation

    ST. LOUIS — A man who scored what he thought was a prime parking spot in downtown St. Louis says he returned from a trip to the gym with his fiancee to find his car swallowed by a sinkhole.

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 [Christian Gooden | St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP]
  3. Florida members of Congress tell Trump to back off Atlantic drilling

    Blogs

    WASHINGTON - A large, bipartisan contingent of the Florida House delegation has a firm message for President Donald Trump: Lay off plans for oil drilling in the Atlantic.

  4. Lakeland soldier, stationed at Fort Bragg, faces child porn charges

    Crime

    A soldier, formerly of Landland stationed at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, faces 10 counts of child pornography after Polk County deputies say he downloaded inappropriate images while visiting family.

    Nathan Scott Gray, formerly of Lakeland, faces 10 counts of child pornography in Polk County. He is stationed at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. [Polk County Sheriff's Office]
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