It's only been a few years since Baltimore's ailing AFRAM event was redesigned and transformed into the African-American Heritage Festival, but the new celebration has already developed a huge following and a positive reputation.

"It's the combination of entertainment, education and family attractions that has made it the success that it is," said John C. White, a spokesman for the festival.

White said the third annual program, which takes place this weekend at Camden Yards, has been planned to offer much of the same.

Performers include LL Cool J and Ashford & Simpson, and representatives from political, civic and social groups will give demonstrations and hand out brochures in two large exhibitor tents.

Art shows, including a photographic chronology of black Baltimore and a display by Baltimore's Great Blacks in Wax Museum, will also be at the event.

The festival boasts a little something for everyone, which makes it a great activity for all generations, White noted.

"And we're stressing that since the last day is Father's Day that it's a good day for [people] to come out with their families," he said.

The African-American Heritage Festival is tomorrow through Sunday at Camden Yards. Hours are 3 p.m.-10 p.m. tomorrow, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday and noon-8 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free for this rain-or-shine event. Call 410-318-8286 or visit www.aahf.org.

- Sarah Schaffer
Heritage festival highlights

This year's African-American Heritage Festival will feature dozens of performances. The following headliners will appear.

Tomorrow
  • 7:30 p.m. -- Ashford & Simpson
  • 9 p.m. -- Gerald Levert

    Saturday
  • 7 p.m. -- Raheem DeVaughn
  • 8:30 p.m. -- LL Cool J

    Sunday
  • 7 p.m. -- Anthony Hamilton
  • 8:15 p.m. -- Maze featuring Frankie Beverly