The Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts is a giant artscape that begins on the campus of Pennsylvania State University and spills over into the streets of downtown State College.
It opens Wednesday with Children and Youth Day, featuring performances of music, dance, juggling, children's films and storytelling. Children can paint, play musical instruments, participate in hands-on crafts and music workshops. There's also an international kiosk, where children will have an opportunity to participate in activities from around the world.
The 26th annual sidewalk sale and exhibition opens the following day and runs through Sunday, providing a marketplace for over 350 artists and craftspeople from all over the country. Special exhibits this year include a national juried exhibition of contemporary work by artists in ceramics, fiber, glass, metals, wood and paper; hundreds of award-winning banners that will hang along the festival route; a juried exhibition of two- and three-dimensional work in various media by artists from Pennsylvania and the mid-Atlantic region; and an exhibition of arts and crafts by Central Pennsylvania students. Hours for the sidewalk sale and exhibition are noon to 8 p.m. Thursday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free.
There are also four stages of entertainment. Two are open to the public free of charge. A $2 Performing Arts Button admits the bearer to the other two stages, on a first-come, first-serve basis, as well as to selected programs, workshops and concerts. Performances range from symphonic music, pops, bluegrass and jazz to dance, storytelling and puppetry. Food of every description will be for sale, including Maryland crab cakes offered by a food purveyor from Chestertown.
For information, call (814) 237-3682.
Canal boat festival
Western Maryland lists several events next weekend. First there's the C&O canal boat festival Saturday and Sunday at the north branch of the C&O Canal Park near Cumberland.
Activities will take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Lock 75 around a replica of an old canal boat, built with a captain's cabin and mule stable. Tours of the canal boat and the lock house will be conducted by park rangers. Several Civil War re-enactment groups will be encamped by the Lock House, along with the Wills Mountain Renegades, who will present a frontier campsite of the 1800s.
New this year will be a number of working artists who paint canal scenes, skipjacks and other nautical art. There will also be stagecoach rides complete with a hold-up, arts and crafts, strolling clowns, country and bluegrass music, Irish folk music, and a variety of food, including canal bean soup cooked over an open fire.
Admission is $1; free for children under 6. The park is four miles south of Cumberland on state Route 51. For information, call (301) 777-5905.
Penn Alps Summerfest
Potters, woodcarvers, glass blowers, spinners and weavers, musicians and storytellers will be among the more than 70 artisans at the annual Penn Alps Summerfest and quilt show. This year's event will be held from Thursday to Saturday on the grounds of the Spruce Forest Artisan Village on U.S. Route 40, one-half mile east of Grantsville. There will also be a number of food concessions on the grounds.
The quilt show will be held at the Grantsville Elementary School. Shuttle service will be provided between the school and the festival and other places of interest. A combination ticket to the festival and quilt show costs $4, or $3 for each event; free for
ages 12 and under. For information, call (301) 895-3332.
A re-enactment of the Battle of Funkstown will take place Saturday and Sunday at the Community Park in Funkstown near Hagerstown. About 231 military and 119 civilian Civil War re-enactors are expected for this fourth annual event.
The camps will be open Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Highlights of the day include a tactical battle at 1:30 p.m.; a ladies period fashion show at 2 p.m.; and period music, dancing and a sing-along at 7:30 p.m. On Sunday, camps will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with the main event, the re-enactment of the Battle of Funkstown, scheduled at 2 p.m. In addition to the camps, there will be arts and crafts and food vendors.
Admission is free. The Community Park is on Frederick Road, off Alternate U.S. Route 40, just east of Hagerstown. For information, call (301) 791-0948.
Lotus blossom festival
The lotus blossoms are in full bloom at Lilypons Water Gardens near Frederick. And there among the acres of lotus and lily ponds, you can enjoy the 12th annual lotus blossom festival on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.