Best bets

Maryland State Fair

Here are some highlights of the remaining five days of the fair:



See the Central Maryland Beekeepers extract honey in the Farm and Garden Building. Be amazed at the skill in the Watermelon Seed-Spitting Contest at the Farm and Garden Building.



Don't miss the Pony Hunter Breeding Horse Show at the Horse Show Ring. Watch master gardeners work with garlic in the Farm and Garden Building. And be sure to catch country singer Brad Paisley at the racetrack infield.


The Draft Horse and Mules Conformation and Hitch Classes Show takes place at the Horse Show Ring. There'll be various swine shows in the Swine Barn. Grupo Latino Continental will perform on the racetrack infield.


It's Maryland Beef Day. There'll be cow-milking lessons in the Cow Palace, and the Heavy Weight Horse Pulling Contest in the Horse Show Ring. And there's an antique car show in the Grandstand.


See sheep in the Sheep Barn and a Welsh Pony Show in the Horse Show Ring. See the Master Gardeners' Exhibit in the Farm and Garden Building. And catch the NASA/First Robotics Stack Attack Competition at Entertainment Row.


The Maryland State Fair takes place at the Maryland State Fairgrounds, 2200 York Road, Timonium. Fair admission is $5; free for ages under 12. Rides are an additional fee. For hours and information, call 410-252-0200 or visit

'Balpex 2003'

The annual "Balpex" stamp show takes place tomorrow through Sunday at Marriott's Hunt Valley Inn. The Baltimore Philatelic Society sponsors the show, which has more than 55 dealers from around the world. Visitors can learn about the hobby, as well as buy, sell and trade rare and exotic stamps.

Also, four of the world's largest stamp associations will convene at the event. They are the American Helvetia Philatelic Society, the Eire Philatelic Association, the Ottoman and Near East Philatelic Society and the Vatican Philatelic Society.

Six philatelic judges from around the world will be at the show, determining winners of the best exhibits. Awards will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Marriott's Garden Room.

The U.S. Postal Service will set up a display and sell stamps. And there will be a children's room for those interested in learning how to begin a stamp-collecting hobby. Free stamps will be given to children.


"Balpex 2003" runs 10 a.m.-6 p.m. tomorrow-Saturday and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday at Marriott's Hunt Valley Inn, 245 Shawan Road. $4, good for three days. Free admission Sunday for seniors, collectors under 18 and disabled people. Call 410-252-1551.

'Wigged Out'

For the next month, it'll be all about Hairspray throughout the city. Even Mount Clare Museum House is celebrating the Morris Mechanic Theatre-bound musical with an exhibit.

Wigged Out: An Exhibit of 18th-Century Wig Styles will run Tuesday through Sept. 28 at the museum. The display will show off 1760s hairstyles and compare them to Hairspray's 1960s 'dos. The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is dressing a few ladies' wigs in 1760s styles, and local hair and wig designer Nan Flanigan is coiffing a couple of ladies' wigs in 1960s fashion. Men's wigs will be on display, as well.

"Wigged Out" runs Tuesday through Sept. 28 at Mount Clare Museum House, Carroll Park, 1500 Washington Blvd. Hours are 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays and 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays-Sundays. Guided tours of the museum will be offered on the hour. Last tour at 3 p.m. $6; $5 seniors; $3 children; $1 ages 12 and under. Call 410-837-3262.