The end of this week and the weekend bring lots of fun at local libraries, free outdoor concerts, and something called SalsaPolkaLooza at the Creative Alliance at the Patterson.

Also, you can have a pillow fight at the Bowie Baysox game. That sounds tempting.


Here's the list, with lots of help from intern Kayla Cross:

Thursday, July 23:

Sing, Say, Stomp and Play: Head out to the Parkville branch of the Baltimore County Public Library for a morning of fun with song and dance. This event is free and starts at 9:30 a.m. Children ages 2-5 are welcome with an adult.

Get Creative with Playdough: Get your hands dirty in this free program at the Mount Airy branch of the Carroll County Public Library. Play with the colorful playdough on hand or learn how to make your own. This event is for all ages and starts at 11 a.m.

Patchwork Quilt: Spend the afternoon at the Walbrook branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library learning about the Underground Railroad and having fun. Children, ages 6-12, can make their own 9-inch quilt square and learn about the importance of quilting during the Underground Railroad. This event is free and starts at 1 p.m. Registration is required; call 410-396-0935.

Friday, July 24:

Bowie's Largest Pillow Fight: Bring the pillows and enjoy an old fashioned pillow fight, baseball style. After the Bowie Baysox take on the Reading Phillies at 7:05 p.m., the field will be open for pillow fighting and split into three areas: one for families with small children, one for families with teenagers and one for adults. Admission to an individual Bowie Baysox game is $6-$14.

Express Yourself! Simple Bookbinding Techniques: Learn the art of bookbinding at the Lansdowne branch of the Baltimore County Public Library at 2 p.m. Teenagers, ages 11-17, can make their own journals or "lookbooks" during this workshop. This event is free and registration is required. Call 410-887-5602.

Super Sleuths: Express your spy side at the Elkridge branch of the Howard County Library. Children ages 5 and up are welcome to come and listen to spy stories and participate in activities. This event is free and starts at 2 p.m. Registration is required; call 410-313-5085 or go to www.hclibrary.org.

Family Fun Night:

Head out to the Y of Central Maryland http://www.ymaryland.org/ in Abingdon for a night of free family fun. Families can enjoy fitness classes, the gym and games. There will be healthy snacks and giveaways as well. This event lasts from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

More on Saturday and Sunday...Saturday, July 25:

Story time with the First Lady: Maryland First Lady Katie O'Malley reads in the Meyerhoff Children's Garden of the Central Branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library at noon.

Summer Live! The Motorettes: Harborplace Amphitheater holds an evening of music for all ages. The Motorettes is a female fronted band that features soul and oldies music. This event is free and lasts from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.


Star-Gazing: Community Observing Night: Join the Anne Arundel Community College Astronomy Club for a free night of star-gazing. People of all ages are welcome to come to the Arnold campus and view the stars and moon. Bring your own binoculars and telescopes, or use one of the nine provided by the Astronomy Club. This event lasts from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

SalsaPolkaLooza!: Bring the family to this free international festival at Creative Alliance at the Patterson. There will be free art activities for kids of all ages, music, salsa lessons, dance performances and more. Bands such as La Firma and The Continentals will perform, among others. This event lasts from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Sunday, July 26:

Summer Live! Lovecraft: The Harborplace Amphitheater is hosting another free event for all ages. Lovecraft is a jazz band and will play from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Roots, Shoots, Stems, and Leaves: Enjoy an afternoon of learning and dining at the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center. Families can learn about the parts of a plant and make a salad with them as well. This event is $3 per person and lasts from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Registration is required; call 410-612-1688.

Baltimore Sun photo by Mauricio Rubio, of the 2007 SalsaPolkaLooza!