Television booms with patriotic sparkle


The tube is red-white-and-blue all over!

* "Animaniacs" (4 p.m.-4:30 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- American history for the younger set is provided by the animated Warner brothers, Wakko and Yakko. They review the state capitals and help Abraham Lincoln write the Gettysburg Address. Fox.

* "A Capitol Fourth" (8 p.m.-9:30 p.m., MPT, Channels 22, 67) -- The 16th annual patriotic bash from the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol features Erich Kunzel and the National Symphony Orchestra, with guests Barry Bostwick, Leslie Uggams, Sylvia McNair, Gregg Baker, the Chieftains, Ricky Skaggs and Rita McKenzie. PBS.

* "The Babe" (8 p.m.-10 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- George Herman Ruth provided his own kind of fireworks from his earliest days playing baseball in Baltimore. John Goodman portrays the swaggering Sultan of Swat in director Arthur Hiller's fond film from 1992. Fox.

* "Coach" (9:30 p.m.-10 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Hayden (Craig T. Nelson) suffers remorse after telling an inexperienced team member to play rough, and an opposing player is badly hurt. ABC repeat.

* "4th of July Fireworks Spectacular" (1:05 a.m.-2:05 a.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- On tape from New York City, the 19th annual Independence Day celebration includes 40 minutes of pyrotechnics and performances by Jerry Seinfeld and Jon Secada.


* "Amazing America" (10 a.m.- 6 p.m., The Discovery Channel) -- Kevin Nealon of "Saturday Night Live" is the host of a day-long telecast of offbeat features from across the country, including story-telling in Tennessee, a Harley Davidson rally in South Dakota, Frisbee-dog jumping from Washington, and baton twirling from Kansas City.

* "The Great Civil War Marathon" (noon-3 a.m., The Learning Channel) -- The Declaration of Independence celebrated by today's holiday was put to its greatest test 100 years later -- which is why the cable network has programmed 13 hours of documentary study of the conflict between the states.

* "Pops Goes the Fourth" (7:30 p.m.-10:30 p.m., A&E; Network) -- Live from Boston, the fifth annual holiday concert by the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra features Mel Torme and the Pointer Sisters doing World War II pop standards, as well as the traditional "1812 Overture," with booming cannons and tolling church bells.

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