All's fair in Baltimore these days.
City and community representatives met yesterday morning in the parking lot of former Eastern High School on 33rd Street to announce the Charm City Fair.
The new fair will be held in Eastern's parking lot, directly across from Memorial Stadium, on Sept. 18, 19 and 20. It will replace the Baltimore City Fair, which city officials terminated earlier this summer.
The Charm City Fair will be underwritten by O-Go Sales Co. Inc. of Essex and Shaw and Sons Amusements of Severn.
"It's something everybody can enjoy," said Jay Harris, fair director and president of Harris Promotions.
Mr. Harris said 50 percent of the proceeds will be shared by Johns Hopkins Children's Center, the city Department of Recreation and Parks and the Greater Homewood Community Association. The fair's organizers will retain the other half as profit.
The organizers said they were confident that the fair will be a financial success. They said they expect it to attract more than 100,000 people over the three days.
This year's fair is not intended to celebrate city neighborhoods and urban living -- the theme of past city fairs. The purpose of the Charm City Fair is to provide entertainment, Mr. Harris explained. If it is successful, it might become an annual event, he added.
"It'll be a lot of fun," said Calvin Buikema, superintendent of parks for the city. "This is a good spot, with a lot of room and free parking in the stadium lot."
The last city fair was held in 1991. Its organizers had problems raising money to stage the fair this year and it had fallen deep into debt since its inception in 1970.
Much of the city fair's debt resulted from the cost of big-name entertainment, which sometimes didn't attract the large crowds that organizers expected.
The Drifters and the Marvelettes -- two Oldies groups -- will perform at the Charm City Fair.
"We're sparing no costs this year," Mr. Harris said. "We just want to put on a great event."
Fair organizers are scheduling meetings with community groups to address any concerns about noise or traffic.