For most students, summer school means hitting...


For most students, summer school means hitting the books. But for Dan Dudis, of Pokomoke City in Worchester County, it means hitting the deck of the Pride of Baltimore II. As the winner of the Maryland State Geography Bee, the eighth-grader will be joining the crew of the Pride July 10-21 when it sails from Leningrad in the Soviet Union to Southampton, England. "I feel really excited about it because I've never been on a sailing ship like that before," he said, adding that the voyage was an unexpected part of the prize. Dan also earned $100 and the chance to compete in a national geography contest. The trip is part of "Students With PRIDE," a program developed through the state Department of Education to use the sailing ship as a learning tool. While on board, Dan will keep a log and take "classes" in geography, regional history and navigation with the help of teacher/coordinator Claudinia Burgemeister. Dan's father, Joe Dudis, will accompany his son on the trip, which begins Sunday with a flight to Helsinki, where they'll pick up a train to Leningrad.

Music and fireworks:

Music on the Hill, a free evening of song and fireworks, is being hosted tonight by the Butchers Hill Concert Committee. Beginning at 8 p.m., the Municipal Band and the Archbishop Curley Jazz Band will perform. At midnight, the fireworks begin to hail in Independence Day. The event is held at South Patterson Park Avenue and East Lombard Street.

Soap star lives:

Four years after her character's plane went down over the ocean, Deidre Hall will return to NBC's "Days of Our Lives" as beloved psychiatrist Marlena Evans Brady, the network announced yesterday. Her first show is Aug. 2. Hall played Marlena for 11 years before leaving in '87 to work full time on NBC's prime-time drama "Our House." Says she of Marlena's miracle: "Who would have dreamed she was such a strong swimmer!"

The stars go out:

The talk around Hollywood last week focused largely on two of the town's big-name actresses, Kim Basinger and Debra Winger. In separate actions, both left film projects with which they had been publicly associated. In both instances, that old standby "creative differences" was invoked. Hollywood has seen this saga before. But the incidents once again focus on just how much power star names carry -- or don't, depending on what kind of backing a film has. With an independent movie such as "Boxing Helena," Basinger's departure may ground the film for good. But when the project has studio backing, like "A League of Their Own," Winger's departure probably won't delay the start of production. Jennifer Lynch, director-writer of "Boxing Helena" and the daughter of director David Lynch, feels she is having an awful case of deja vu. The lead role in her provocative story about obsessive love was originally going to be played by Madonna. But the pop star bowed out last December. Earlier this month, Madonna's name was added to the cast list of Penny Marshall's "A League of Their Own"; she would play a smart-mouth ballplayer. But a report in a Washington Post column indicated that Winger didn't care for the casting of Madonna and had been having difficulty with the studio. According to the report, she decided to exit. Penn Jillette, the speaking half of the comedy duo Penn and Teller, will make his daytime debut July 17 as New York hairdresser Rudy on ABC's "One Life to Live."

Povich and MADD:


Maury Povich, known to tip a few in his younger, wilder days, just taped several public-service announcements for Mothers Against Drunk Driving. The spots debut this week. Povich's syndicated Paramount talk show launches in September.

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