Soft Ballin'

June is a tough time to live in Phoenix. While winter allows us to puff out our chests and brag to the rest of the country about the perfect weather, the Cardinals’ playoff appearances, and the Suns’ title hopes, this time of year makes us stare at our shoes while mumbling something about Byung-Hyun Kim and a dry heat.

If you want to regain some civic pride, check out the 43rd annual Firecracker Sports Festival. The festival is old enough to qualify as an Arizona institution. Spectators can watch the state's longest running softball tournament for free, and the "Firecracker" part isn't false advertising -- there will be a free fireworks show at 9 p.m.

Fri., June 25, 7 p.m., 2010