There is no doubt about it: it's hot, and there's little chance for immediate respite.
OK, class, we'll now try a different approach for making the best of it: instead of talking about it, let's get outdoors, do something worthwhile, and find out how hot it really is.
One worthwhile endeavor (with every possibility of happening during slightly cooler weather) is the Maryland Seafood Festival, on Sept. 9, 10, and 11 at the new pavilion area at Sandy Point State Park.
The event's sponsor, the Greater Annapolis Chamber of Commerce, is looking for volunteers from its membership and their employees to sell food tickets and sodas and work at the entrance gate and the refund booth. Chances are, they'll welcome nonchamber volunteers as well.
If you need a carrot to entice you, Willie Nelson will be performing at the park Friday night, and additional volunteers will be needed for the 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. shift.
For the rest of the festival, the chamber is scheduling four-hour shifts; volunteers will be given a parking pass, admission ticket, and $6 in complimentary food coupons.
The seafood festival is a great opportunity to discover the new East Beach Shelter area at Sandy Point. It has 12 covered pavilions, with big, efficient grills that are available for rent for parties, reunions or fund-raising events.
There are a few restrictions, such as no amplified music, and parking is limited, but the location is gorgeous, with a good stretch of beach and lots of grass and space. For more detailed information, call the park at 974-2149.
One group that has signed up for a pavilion for a fund-raiser is Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating -- CRAB -- the Annapolis-based sailing program that offers sailing opportunities for people with disabilities.
In addition to its sailing lessons and boat rentals for a reasonable fee, CRAB's volunteers have a Sail Free day at Sandy Point on the last Sunday of each month during the summer.
On Aug. 31, the organization invites all comers for a 30-to-60 minute boat ride, depending on the number of folks who show up. Several of the CRAB boats have special seats to accommodate people out of their wheelchairs, and there are experienced, gentle people to help with the transfer in and out.
CRAB's Sunday Sail Free will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The first CRAB FundFest is from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sept. 17, with tickets $15 for adults and $10 for kids 5 to 11.
There will be good food, wonderful (unamplified) entertainment, the beach, and great company. For tickets, call 301-217-970. To volunteer for setup, cleanup, flipping burgers, organizing wheelchair kite-flying and other activities, call (410) 798-6537.
Sandy Point Park is itself looking for volunteers, people who are interested in assisting park rangers with parking, beach patrol, and assisting with park programs, such as those run by park Naturalist Lynn Pines. Call 974-2149.
Heading south: The Davidsonville Ruritan Club and Foundation offers an opportunity on Saturday to fill any gaps you might have in your decorating scheme, your garden shed, or your library.
Robert Campbell and Sons will be auctioning antiques, lawn mowers, books and televisions, beginning at 10 a.m. at Locust Farm on Route 424 between Central Avenue and Route 50.
For more information, call Paul Heffner at 798-0722, or Bobby Suit at 798-0154.
Today is the deadline for craftsmen and women, food vendors and advertisers to sign up for the 11th Annual Bayfest, scheduled Aug. 27 at North Beach.
The event draws an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 people, who this year can enjoy the new beach-side boardwalk, as well as children's' activities, live entertainment, antique cars and a new food pavilion.
Call (301) 855-6681.
I have a special fondness for the photographs of Marion Warren because I was enticed to Annapolis a couple of years ago through letters written on note cards featuring his work.
I'm looking forward to his sixth book, "Bringing Back the Bay: the Chesapeake in the Photographs of Marion E. Warren and the Voices of its People," due in September.
It is scheduled for a sneak preview this Saturday at the John M. Taylor Funeral Home, 147 Duke of Gloucester St. in Annapolis.
Warren's daughter, Mame Warren, will be on hand at 11:30 a.m. to autograph 25 complimentary copies of her own book, "Then Again . . . Annapolis 1900-1965." Mame Warren is curator of photographs at the Maryland State Archives.
The Taylor Funeral home has been a significant presence in Annapolis since its founding 132 years ago. In 1905, it was honored with the commission of caring for the remains of John Paul Jones, being moved from Paris to an honored place at the Naval Academy.
The open house at the recently renovated funeral home begins at 10 a.m. Saturday. The program will include a brief chapel service, remarks by Annapolis Mayor Alfred A. Hopkins and the book signing by Mame Warren. Refreshments will be served.
Speaking of photographs, an extraordinary one is Kevin Fleming's wonderful overhead view of the Annapolis Rotary Club Crab Feast, the largest in the world.
It's in the shadow (thank goodness) of the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday.
Tickets are $27 for adults, $10 for children 6 to 12, and the proceeds stay right here in Annapolis, benefiting many local organizations.
6* For tickets, call your local Rotarian.