Maryland Preakness celebrations move into high gear


Today Media Balloon Flight. Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. 6:30 a.m. This year's three-day, four-event balloon festival features more than 30 hot-air balloons. (410) 837-3030. Free.

Maryland Preakness Celebration Block Party. The Prince George's Equestrian Center's block party, featuring music by the Drifters, refreshments. 5 p.m.-9 p.m. Proceeds benefit the Therapeutic Riding Program. (301) 952-4740. $1 admission with your Preakness pin.

Bud Light Nights. Water Street's block parties run nightly through May 15 (except Sunday). 5:30 p.m.-midnight. Refreshments, dancing, live entertainment: Rob Fahey and The Pieces, tonight; the Rattle Cats, tomorrow; Great Train Robbery, Monday; Tiffany, Tuesday; Killing Floor, Wednesday; Tony Berry and New Money, Thursday; Gazze, May 15. (410) 837-3030. Free with a Preakness pin, which you can purchase at the site for $2.

Hunt Valley Mall Preakness Fashion Show. Hunt Valley Mall. Noon-2 p.m. Informal fashion show for the "equestrian look" featuring Miss Preakness and her court. (410) 785-3770. Free.

Lunchtime With the Orioles. Harborplace Amphitheatre. Noon. Baltimore Orioles players sign autographs, meet fans with WBAL's Joe Angel. (410) 332-4191. Free.

Baltimore African Violet Club Plant Show, Sale. Towson Market Place. 1:30 p.m.-9 p.m. Largest African violet show in the region. Also, tomorrow. (410) 682-5473. Free.


First National Bank Hot Air Balloon Competition and Children's Festival. Druid Hill Park liftoff between 6:30 a.m. and 7 a.m. Festival complete with rides, clowns, music by the Bayside Big Band, miniature horses from Valhalla Farm, Spectrum Puppets Productions, refreshments. The zoo opens at 9 a.m., admission is $1 off with Preakness pin. (410) 837-3030. Festivities are free with Preakness pin.

$700,000 Pimlico Special. Rich stakes races featuring former Triple Crown competitors at Pimlico Race Course. Post time 12:30 p.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.

Crown Petroleum Balloonglow and Concert. Brightly lit hot-air balloons amid vendors, rides, arts, crafts from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. in Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. WPOC-FM (93.1) presents performers Joe Diffie, Collin Ray, Marge Calhoun 4:30 p.m. Proceeds benefit the Kennedy Krieger Institute, United Cerebral Palsy. (410) 837-3030. Admission $10, kids younger than 10 admitted free; $4 off admission with Preakness pin.

Shock Trauma Gala: "Festival Internationale." Towson Center, Towson. 7 p.m.-midnight. Black-tie event features dinner, dancing to live entertainment. Proceeds to benefit the Trauma ,, Nursing Center, the EMS Field Program, the Charles McC. Mathias National Study Center. (410) 328-8778. Ticket required.

Fifth annual Fells Point Preakness Celebration. Fells Point Market Square, Baltimore. Noon. Live music, arts, crafts, fun, food. Also, Sunday. (410) 675-0898. Free.

Mickey and Minnie Celebrate the Preakness. Disney Store at the Gallery. Noon-4 p.m. Mickey, Minnie Mouse visit the Disney Store. (410) 332-4191. Free.

White Marlin Boardwalk Parade and Festival. Boardwalk, Ocean City. 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Official "marching in" of the resort's summer season. (410) 289-1413. Free.

Macy's Hunt Valley Preakness Fashion Show. Hunt Valley Mall, Hunt Valley. 2 p.m. Latest spring fashions, meet Miss Preakness and her court. (410) 785-0700. Free.


Mother's Day Balloon Competition. Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. 7 a.m. liftoff. (410) 837-3030. Free.

Belvedere Square Antique Show. York Road, Belvedere Avenue. a.m.-3 p.m. Approximately 20 dealers sell furniture, collectibles. (410) 239-6427. Free.

Maryland Preakness Celebration Potomac Hunt Races 40th annual steeplechase. River and Partnership roads, Seneca. 12:30 p.m. (202) 862-2873. Admission.

Picnic Sunday Cookouts. Boordy Vineyards, Hydes. 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Complimentary tastings, tour of the winery -- free with Preakness pin. Reservations required. Also, May 17. (410) 592-5015. Admission.


Tour Du Pont. Afternoon finish of more than 120 world-class cyclists in downtown Hagerstown in America's premier cycling competition. Morning start on Tuesday out of Sharpsburg on the way to the Massanutten Resort in Virginia. (804) 354-9934. Free.

Sunrise at Old Hilltop. Pimlico Race Course. 7 a.m. Tours of Pimlico, including the backstretch, as well as visits with Preakness Stakes competitors. Also, Tuesday-Friday. (410) 542-9400. Free.

Phillips Preakness Celebration Crab Picking Contest. Harborplace amphitheater. Noon. Local celebrities compete to pick the most crab meat. (410) 332-4191. Free.


Tour du Pont. World-class cyclists head out of Sharpsburg on their way to Virginia. (804) 354-9934.


Pee-Wee Preakness. Rash Field in Inner Harbor. Children race on hobbyhorses as mascots cheer on the young "jockeys." 11 a.m.-1 p.m. (410) 837-4636. Free.

AT&T; Great Schooner Race. Historic schooners compete against each other at 3 p.m. from the Inner Harbor Finger Piers. Witness race from docks. (410) 837-3030. Free.

Maryland Preakness Celebration Frog Hop. Fells Point, Broadway Market Square. Noon-1 p.m. Frogs must be 4 inches from nose to tail. Winning frog goes on to Calaveras County frog-jumping jubilee in California. (410) 396-9177. Free.

WQSR Preakness Celebration Oldies Lunch Hour. Harborplace amphitheater. Noon. Hula-hoop contests, yo-yo contests, favorite oldies. (410) 332-4191. Free.

Westminster Inn Preakness Celebration. Westminster Inn courtyard, pub. 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Outdoor block party features special giveaway prizes, free hors d'oeuvres, live entertainment nightly through Saturday. (301) 876-2893. Free.


Paolo Gucci Triple Crown Ball. Black-tie extravaganza, featuring performance by Tony Orlando and Dawn, Hyatt Regency at Inner Harbor, 7 p.m. Proceeds benefit Retinitis Pigmentosa Foundation. (410) 837-3030. Ticket required.

Books for Cooks Preakness Celebration Chesapeake Bay Cookbook Signing. Books for Cooks, Light Street Pavilion, Inner Harbor. Noon. John Shields, author of "The Chesapeake Bay Crab Cookbook," will demonstrate some of his favorite recipes, autograph his cookbook. (410) 332-4191. Free.

Media Crab Derby. Lexington Market. 1 p.m. Local radio, television personalities pick crabs, race them in honor of the Preakness Stakes. (410) 685-6169. Free.

Preakness Night at Wurlitzer's. Marriott's Hunt Valley Inn. 5:30 // p.m.-midnight. Music, dancing, hotel giveaways as well as a visit by Miss Preakness and her court. Proceeds benefit the 1993 Miss Preakness Pageant Scholarship Fund. (410) 785-7000, extension 6444. Admission.

May 15 Maryland Preakness Celebration Parade. Floats, helium balloon characters, mounted units, marching bands. Charles Street to the Inner Harbor. The parade starts at 6:15 p.m. WBAL-TV 11 will provide live coverage from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. (410) 837-3030. Free.

Early Times Dixie Handicap, Black-Eyed Susan Stakes. Two stakes races worth $400,000. Double Booked, last year's Dixie Handicap winner, is expected to compete. Post time 1 p.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.

Bethesda Metro Center Celebrates the Preakness. Wisconsin Avenue, Old Georgetown Road. An outdoor Preakness Eve dance party under the stars from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. WWDC-AM radio will give away Preakness infield tickets, memorabilia. Free three-hour parking at the Hyatt. (301) 652-4988. Free.

May 16 The 117th Running of the Preakness Stakes. Pimlico Race Course. The finest 3-year-olds in the United States compete in the middle jewel of Thoroughbred racing's prestigious Triple Crown. Gates open at 8:30 a.m., with the first post time at 11:30 a.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.

1991 Preakness Infield Concert. Live music, prize giveaways. Festivities begin at 11 a.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.

U.S. Canoe and Kayak Team Olympic Trials. Savage River in Bloomington. 9 a.m. One hundred athletes will compete for 15 spots on the Olympic team. Also, May 17. (301) 387-6666. Admission.

MSSA Bluefish Tournament. Held on Chesapeake Bay, its tributaries. 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Largest bluefish tournament on the East Coast. Also, May 17. (410) 768-8666. Admission.

Preakness semi-formal dance. Mason's Hall, Gorsuch Avenue off Harford Road. 9 p.m. Disc jockey, door prizes. Sponsored by the West Indian Ballroom Dance and Cultural Association of Maryland Inc. (410) 675-7277. Admission.

May 17 Maryland Preakness Celebration Drill-O-Rama. Rash Field in Inner Harbor. Best drill teams in the region strut their stuff in this event, which is to be held annually. (410) 837-3030. Free.

Geisha Handicap. Come back to Pimlico Race Course to watch Maryland's leading fillies, mares contest the $100,000 Geisha Handicap. Post time 12:30 p.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.

Fifth annual Preakness Auction and Champagne Brunch. Harbor Court Hotel, Baltimore. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Champagne brunch featuring silent, live auctions with items donated by Baltimore's Best, sponsored by the Bank of Baltimore for the Baltimore Association for Retarded Citizens. (410) 323-5600. Admission.

A Tasting at the Station. Green Spring Station, Lutherville. 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Wines from around the world, international food, live music. Reservations required. (410) 837-7150. Admission.

Heritage Day. Blair Stables, Bowie. 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Colonial crafts, music, tours, refreshments. (301) 262-6200. Free.

Preakness Block Festival. Lake Clifton Park. 2 p.m. Ethnic foods, music, folk dances. Sponsored by the West Indian Ballroom Dance and Cultural Association of Maryland Inc. (410) 675-7277. Free.

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