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Columbia Festival promises to end with a flourish

As the Columbia Festival of the Arts wraps up this weekend, you'll have a few more chances to catch some world-class performances. Whether you're drawn to music, dance or theater, the tail end of the 10-day festival offers lots of fun.

Now in its 17th year, the festival is attended by more than 35,000 people and is recognized as one of the area's premier summer arts events.

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The final weekend includes a return to LakeFest with an array of hands-on activities and the first Kinetic Art Parade. The finale will be a concert by Grammy-winning artist Harry Connick Jr. at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Most other events will be held in the Jim Rouse Theater for the Performing Arts.

Here are some highlights of this weekend's schedule:

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Today

11 a.m.: Sol y Canto Children's Concert in the Rouse Theater. Vocal harmonies and Afro-Latin rhythms meet in this award-winning group. Tickets are $7.

7:30 p.m.: Modern Man and The Four Bitchin' Babes in the Rouse Theater. Together for the first time, this witty and eclectic group provides a juxtaposition of sensibilities and fun for all ages. Tickets are $22 to $30.

Tomorrow

7:30 p.m.: "Dynasties and Beyond," by the Lily Cai Chinese Dance Company, in the Rouse Theater. This group melds ancient Chinese forms with modern dance and spices things up with dazzling costumes and multimedia designs. Tickets are $25 to $40.

Saturday

7:30 p.m.: The MOMIX dancer-illusionists under the direction of Moses Pendelton in Baseball in the Rouse Theater. Don't miss this comic tribute to America's favorite pastime. Tickets are $25 to $40.

Sunday

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3 p.m.: Rajeckas & Intraub in "Imagination in Motion" in the Rouse Theater. Join Paul Rajeckas and Neil Intraub for this absorbing display of movement theater, combining mime, storytelling, slapstick and dance. Tickets are $7.

7:30 p.m.: Harry Connick Jr. in the "Only You Tour" at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Tickets are $75 for pavilion seats, $40 for lawn.

Lakefest

Get your fill of local art at LakeFest 2004 at the Columbia Town Center Lakefront. Tomorrow's events kick off with concerts and an art contest for the whole family. Saturday, the action runs nonstop from a parade at 9 a.m. to a concert at 9 p.m. Check out some highlights below. All events are free.

Tomorrow

4 p.m. Hear Oriegem's Brazilian Jazz on the LakeStage.

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5:15 p.m.: Jambulay will entertain with light Caribbean music.

6:30 p.m.: Alexandria Kleztet performs.

7:45 p.m.: Revel in the Latin beats of Sol y Canto.

9 p.m.: Enter the Live Art contest on the LakeStage.

9:30 p.m.: The high-energy musical carnival of Cyro Baptista & Beat the Donkey, a collection of drummers and dizzying dancers.

Saturday

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9 a.m.: Arrive early for the Kinetic Art Parade, beginning at The Mall in Columbia south entrance. Bagpiper Dick Huebschmann will lead a wacky bunch of clowns, stiltwalkers, mascots and more.

10 a.m.: Milkshake performs music for the family.

1 p.m.: Get a taste of Mexican culture with the Mariachi Los Amigos.

7 p.m.: Watch the Hula Monsters for a bit of Hawaiian tradition.

9:15 p.m.: Young, crackerjack string band Rani Arbo and Daisy Mayhem combines American musical traditions with a touch of pop and a splash of originality.

Both days will also feature activities including face painting, henna tattoos, arts and crafts, magic shows and plenty of food. For the latest information, visit www.columbiafestival.com or call 410-715-3089.

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For tickets to any event, call the box office at 800-955-5566 or visit www.tickets.com. For more information, or to receive a festival brochure, call 410-715-3089, or visit the festival Web site at www.columbia festival.com.

For more art events, see Page 34.


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