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The MLK Parade, ‘Cats,’ Plungefest, Jeff Dunham and more things to do in Baltimore this week

Baltimore's 20th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade is Jan. 20.
Baltimore's 20th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade is Jan. 20.(Barbara Haddock Taylor, Baltimore Sun)

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade

For the 20th time, bands, floats, step teams, honor and color guards, equestrian units, pols and civic leaders will make their way down Baltimore’s Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to honor the preacher, author, activist and Nobel laureate. More than 70 groups — including the Carroll School of Dance, House of Flying Dancers, Morton Street Dance Center, Roland Park Cheerleaders and Ravens Skate Club — are expected to participate, led by the grand marshal, Grammy-nominated singer Raheem DeVaughn. Begins at noon Jan. 20 at Eutaw Street, then heads south to Baltimore Street. promotionandarts.org.

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Baltimore Boat Show

Ahoy, mates! Current and would-be mariners from all over will be flocking to the Baltimore Convention Center, 1 W. Pratt St., for this cornucopia of all things that ride atop the water. In addition to scores of boats and equipment of all kinds, this largest indoor boat show in the Maryland, D.C., and Chesapeake Bay region will offer a tackle and fishing store (new this go-round) and a virtual fishing simulator (all the fun of fishing without the fuss of having to bait a hook, we suppose), plus a boating career center, kids’ activities (build-a-boat-model workshops, scavenger hunts) and the chance to gawk at the Miss GEICO Offshore Racing Boat, a 50-foot Victory catamaran able to reach speeds over 200 mph. And let’s not forget Friday’s 10th annual Crab Pickin’ Contest. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Jan. 23-25, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Jan. 26. $15, free for kids 12 and younger. baltimoreboatshow.com.

"Cats" comes to the Hippodrome Jan. 21-26.
"Cats" comes to the Hippodrome Jan. 21-26.(Photo by Matthew Murphy/Photo by Matthew Murphy)

‘Cats’

NOT the movie, which has been so mercilessly panned, but the Andrew Lloyd Webber-penned stage musical, based on some children’s poems by T.S. Eliot and starring a bunch of singing cats competing for the right to ascend to their next life. One of the longest-running plays in Broadway history, and it deserved better than it seems to have gotten onscreen. Wonderful music, and if you like cats... 8 p.m. Jan. 21-25, 2 p.m. Jan. 25, 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Jan. 26 at the Hippodrome Theatre, 12 N. Eutaw St. $52.50-$221.50. france-merrickpac.com.

Jeff Dunham: ‘Seriously?’

Dunham brings his always-hilarious cast of characters (Peanut, Bubba J., Achmed the Dead Terrorist), including its newest member, Larry, the president’s personal adviser. What do they say about humor being the best medicine? 5 p.m. Jan. 25 at Royal Farms Arena, 201 W. Baltimore St. $58. royalfarmsarena.com.

The Devil Makes Three

Heading south from their native Vermont, the bluegrass rock trio (plus drummer Stefan Amidon) plays Rams Head Live, 20 Market Place in Power Plant Live. 8:30 p.m. Jan. 23. $25. ramsheadlive.com.

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Son Little plays the 8x10 Jan. 22.
Son Little plays the 8x10 Jan. 22.(Chris Sweda, Chicago Tribune)

Son Little

The L.A.-based singer-songwriter, whose blend of soul, R&B and indie has led to stints working with Mavis Staples, The Roots and even electronic pioneer RJD2, plays the 8x10, 10 E. Cross St. 7 p.m. Jan. 22. $15. the8x10.com.

The wintertime madness that is Plungefest is Jan. 23-25 at Sandy Point State Park.
The wintertime madness that is Plungefest is Jan. 23-25 at Sandy Point State Park.(Baltimore Sun photo by Kenneth K. Lam)

Plungefest

If hurling yourself into an ice-cold Chesapeake Bay is your idea of fun (or if you enjoy watching people hurl themselves into an ice-cold Chesapeake), then you’ll want to head to Annapolis’ Sandy Point State Park Jan. 23-25 for this annual (and borderline inexplicable) rite of winter. (True, it’s all for the benefit of Special Olympics Maryland, but wouldn’t it be easier to write a check?) Various groups will be jumping in the water all three days, with most folks doing it on Jan. 25; if that’s your thing, and you can raise at least $75 for the cause, you can register at support.somd.org. For those who just want to watch, there’ll be food, live music (in a heated ice lodge) and a vendor village to add to the frigid fun. 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Jan. 23, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Jan. 24, 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Jan. 25 at Sandy Point, 1100 E. College Parkway. Free; off-site parking, with shuttles, is available. plungemd.com.

The Siren Spectacular — Immersive Burlesque Floor Show

An evening of “bold, subversive and provocative performance art,” with performances from Madame Lioness, Marlena Magdalene, MaDda, Caliente Creatrix and others. So naughty. 7:30 p.m. Jan. 25 at The Garage @ R. House, 301 W. 29th St. $15-$40. Tickets through eventbrite.com.

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The World/Inferno Friendship Society plays The Ottobar Jan. 24.
The World/Inferno Friendship Society plays The Ottobar Jan. 24.

World/Inferno Friendship Society

These folks describe themselves as “klezmer punks,” which ought to be enough to convince everyone to check them out. Also on stage: Gallows Bound, The Vanishing Hitchhikers and Strong Zero. 9 p.m. Jan. 24 at The Ottobar, 2549 N. Howard St. $12-$14. theottobar.com.

Led Zeppelin 2 plays III: A 50th Anniversary Celebration

This Chicago-based tribute band pays its respects to one of rock’s landmark albums. A half-century since “Led Zeppelin III” came out? Impossible! 8 p.m. Jan. 25 at Baltimore Soundstage, 124 Market Place. $14. baltimoresoundstage.com.

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