Feeling bored? Want to add zest to your life? You've come to the right place. Preakness Celebration is upon us.
This is the time of year when all eyes in the sporting world turn to the Maryland Jockey Club at Pimlico for Saturday's 117th running of the Preakness Stakes, the second jewel in thoroughbred racing's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds. But all eyes in Maryland are focused on a broader array of other events with Preakness connections throughout this week.
Today's highlights include a noon crab-picking contest at Harborplace, the afternoon finish of 120 world-class cyclists in downtown Hagerstown as part of the Tour Du Pont professional bicycling competition and the nightly musical block party being held on Water Street.
The entire state has caught Preakness Week fever. Western Maryland has the breathtaking U.S. Canoe and Kayak Team Olympic Trials along the surging white-water rapids of the Savage River in Garrett County next weekend. Carroll County has the Westminster Inn's outdoor block party in honor of the Preakness on Wednesday. The Tour du Pont cyclists get an early-morning start tomorrow out of Sharpsburg. The East Coast's biggest bluefish tournament happens on Saturday on the Chesapeake Bay. Bowie holds its colonial heritage day at Blair Stables a week from today. Bethesda celebrates the Preakness with an outdoor dance party under the stars Friday night at the Metro Center on Old Georgetown Road.
Baltimore, meanwhile, plays host to the big race itself, and other big thoroughbred stakes events Friday, Saturday and Sunday. For those who like to dress up, there's Thursday's Triple Crown Ball and a champagne brunch on Sunday. For those who like to dress down, there's the frog hop and schooner race on Wednesday, the crab derby on Thursday and the giant Preakness Parade, with 62 marching units, Friday evening.
So don't say there's never anything exciting to do in Baltimore. The problem this week is narrowing your options. Preakness fun is everywhere.