The booths stand vacant, ready to be dismantled and stored for another year. Traffic on Crain Highway once again can proceed at a more orless normal speed. And the members of the Glen Burnie Improvement Association are home getting reacquainted with their families and enjoying their first "real" dinner in days.
The 1991 Original Big Glen Burnie Carnival is a memory. Months of hard work culminated in eight nights of fun, noise and more Yogi Bears than anyone really needs in a lifetime.
But for those of you who are going through cotton candy withdrawal, let me share a few of what I consider this year's carnival highlights:
* Most Unusual Ride: The "Desert Storm" kiddie ride. This ride consists of several army-type vehicles with tan-and-brown camouflage paint and a pink Mustang convertible with gold plastic seats. Thereare two possible theories on this one. Either it was a political statement about the oil industry's influence on our involvement in the war or the owners of the ride, Shaw & Sons, just ran out of tan-and-brown paint. Whatever the reason, it was definitely unique.
* Favorite Observation From a Customer: After successfully tossing a softballinto the three-balls-for-a-dollar milk can at the Anne Arundel Gridiron Rebel's booth, Shawn Chester, 17, requested, as his prize, "that white horse with the red hat." When I expressed disappointment that he hadn't recognized Quick Draw McGraw, he just shrugged and said, "I was a Smurf kid." He then moved on, leaving all of the workers feeling just a little bit older.
* Best Advice About County Police Officers Uniforms: Never tell a county police officer that he wears the same hat as Quick Draw McGraw. Evidently they don't find that information insightful. Trust me on this one.
In other carnival news, the 1991 Oldsmobile Calais raffled off by the improvement association was won by Charlie Taylor Jr. of Glen Burnie. Mary McCann of Joppa won the 15-foot Sunbird boat, 50-horsepower engine and trailer in the raffle sponsored by the Glen Burnie Volunteer Fire Co. And North Arundel Hospital's 50-50 drawing made Jim Trayley of Annapolis $1,000 richer.
I won a Hawaiian lei at the Penny Pitch.
David the Gnome. Little Koala. Noozles. Sharon, Lois and Braum. I've been slimed! Get the picture?
We're talking Nickelodeon here. The Kids' Network. And the Kids' Network is coming to Glen Burnie this weekend to auditionboys and girls to be contestants on the game shows produced by the network.
Kids from all over the Mid-Atlantic region are expected toconverge on Glen Burnie Mall this Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with the ultimate hope of getting "slimed" and being selected to visit Nickelodeon's studios in Orlando, Fla. (For the uninitiated, getting slimed involves green, gooey stuff being poured over your head.)
GlenBurnie is the 14th stop of a 15-city tour by the network.
All contestants, ages 7 to 14, will be registered on a first-come, first-served basis. On Friday, 250 kids will be registered starting at 4 p.m.,500 kids will be registered on Saturday starting at 9 a.m. and 250 on Sunday beginning at 9 a.m.
Children first will be asked to perform a "physical challenge," such as hopping around in a sleeping bag to demonstrate their physical dexterity, said spokesman Paul Ward.
"After the physical challenge, our staff will take each kid to a private area to audition, with a screen test before a camera," he said. "We'll ask the kids about their hobbies and interests, who they look up to. This will be broadcast in the mall so their parents can watch."
Sixteen kids will be selected to participate in four stage shows at 1:30 and 4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Robin Morrela, host of "Super Sloppy Double Dare," will present several video clips and then ask questions about each clip.
The top four contestants will be asked questions of general knowledge. The first to answer three questionscorrectly will be "slimed" and win the trip to Orlando.
For more information, call the mall office, 766-6527.
The next time a truck hauling twin trailers passes you on the Beltway, don't be alarmed. It may be Tony Cesenaro, the winner of the Maryland Safe Truck Driving Championship, on his way to Minneapolis for the national contest. Cesenaro is one of seven drivers representing Maryland.
A resident of the Hammarlee section of Glen Burnie, Cesenaro has been driving tractor trailers for Overnight Transportation for 15 years. He began participating in the safe driving championships in 1986 and took second place with the twin trailers.
He has placed first in the state every year since, with the exception of 1989, when his two consecutive wins prevented him from competing. Last year he won first place in the nation over 319 truckers for Overall Pre-Trip Safety.
"We put a lot of time in it, but you do it because you want to," said Cesenaro. "People say you're just a truck driver, but I'm proud of what I do. I really am. I always try to promote safety among my friends."