New Orleans and Bahia have their Mardi Gras, recently celebrated and long remembered.
On Sunday, nearly two weeks after Mardi Gras, certain citizens of Eastport will take the wraps off their own frenzy in the streets: the 14th Annual St. Patrick's Day Green Beer Race at Third Street and Severn Avenue.
It isn't really on St. Patrick's Day. And it isn't "a" race -- it's a men's race and a women's race and a tricycle race and lots of other events.
There's street entertainment by jugglers and fire-eaters and There's street entertainment by jugglers and fire-eaters and mimes and who knows what-all. There's a keg toss, and hot dogs and hamburgers, and probably a wee drop or two of green beer at some point during the afternoon.
The party begins at 12:30 p.m. The races begin at 2 p.m. Advance registration for the races at Marmaduke's is encouraged, but not required. Mama Jama starts playing at 4 p.m. There's no cover, and the party happens rain or shine -- just like Mardi Gras and St. Patty's Day. Part of the proceeds from the event will be given to the Marine Trades Association.
A gathering for all and sundry of a different sort is scheduled Saturday at the Mount Zion United Methodist Church in Lothian. It's the annual winter spaghetti dinner put on by the Lothian Ruritan, to raise money for its many community projects.
The all-you-can-eat menu includes spaghetti -- with secret homemade sauce, of course -- homemade bread and salad. For a little extra money, you can cruise by the bake table to pick out a tempting desserts.
The spaghetti dinner is served from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets, sold at the door, are $6 for adults and $3 for children. The church is at 122 Bayard Road in Lothian.
For more information, call 867-1358.
This evening is the first of four Introduction to yoga classes this month, sponsored by Anne Arundel Medical Center at its Community Health Education Center off Jennifer Road.
The classes, from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Mondays in March, emphasize relaxation and flexibility. The cost is $32 for four classes.
Also this month is a tai chi series, from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays, which focuses on nonstrenuous exercise that regulates the central nervous system. The cost is $8 per class.
The two classes are part of the hospital's stress management program.
Both disciplines have a number of avenues for further participation in the Annapolis area.
/# For information, call 224-5748.
Shortly after I first visited, and fell in love with, the Netherlands, I discovered through some research of my mom's that I have a significant dose of Dutch genes.
I'm intrigued, therefore, with a one-day symposium at the Hammond-Harwood House, "The Influence of the Netherlands on the Colonial Chesapeake." The workshop is a result of recent research into the Lookerman family, which made the famous house its home from 1811-1857, before it passed to a Lookerman daughter and her husband, Richard Harwood.
Speakers include Peter Kenny of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, on "The Material World of the Anglo-Dutch Settlements"; Al Luckenback, Anne Arundel archaeologist, on Dutch influence locally; and Robert Leath of the Historic Charleston Foundation, on the Dutch Influence on furniture in the Colonial Chesapeake. Hammond-Harwood House executive director Stephen Patrick will provide background on the Lookerman family.
A box lunch is included in the $10 registration fee. Reservations are required, and seating is limited.
The Hammond-Harwood House is on Maryland Avenue. Call 269-1714 for reservations or information.
Enough about adult pursuits and opportunities: Here's a challenge for all school children in Annapolis and South County. The Maryland You Are Beautiful Program and the Maryland State Department of Education last week launched a student literacy writing competition. The challenge: "Drug Free Schools . . . You Make It Happen."
The writing competition is designed to be a creative learning experience; the ancillary goal is involvement of children in the solution to an enormous school problem.
There are four levels of competition: kindergarten through second grade, third through fifth, sixth through eighth, and ninth through 12th.
There are a variety of prizes, and all entrants will receive discount coupons to Paramount's King's Dominion Theme Park. Guidelines are available from participating schools' principals and homeroom teachers.
It's great to have two notices from South County.
First, the very successful, and now-annual, Southern Anne Arundel County Calendar, jointly sponsored by the Shady Side Rural Heritage Society and the Galesville Heritage Society, has announced the sites to be depicted by local artists for their 1996 calendar.
And second, the South County Cultural Association, a nonprofit program supported by donations and ticket income, is launching its 1995-1996 membership drive on Saturday.
The association sponsors a variety of programs throughout the year, and draws its audience from the Eastern Shore and Baltimore suburbs, as well as from South County.
For details on the Shady Side Calendar competition, contact Newell Cannon, 867-4763.
For the South County Cultural Association, call 867-2029.