Purple dinosaur's parade appearance prompts musings on future GLEN BURNIE

NEIGHBORS

June 02, 1993|By BONITA FORMWALT

Memorial Day, 1993. Glen Burnie. The sun is shining. There are bands and politicians, antique cars and baton twirlers. People cheer and politicians wave.

Suddenly a gasp goes through the rows of viewers. No! It couldn't be.

It's BARNEY!

Yes, the great celebrity dinosaur himself was right here in Glen Burnie. Seated in the back of a combination stretch limo-El Camino, he cruised Crain Highway with his zany sidekick, Baby Bop.

In the event you don't have regular contact with a preschooler, this Barney guy is a large purple dinosaur who has his own TV career and a politically correct song for every possible problem or social situation a preschool child could face.

Frankly, he alarms me.

Find a room full of small children. Feed them frosted Pop Tarts followed by large quantities of Kool-Aid. As soon as the walls start to sway stick a Barney tape in the VCR -- there are approximately 4,017 from which to chose -- and just watch.

They stop. Mid-sentence, mid-swing, mid-breath. They stop and turn to watch Barney.

Doesn't anyone else wonder if maybe this is some plot to overthrow the government? Imagine this. The year is 2018 -- the first national election in which these 4-year-olds can cast a vote. A write-in campaign puts the first dinosaur in the White House. (Of course a woman still hasn't been elected, but that's another column).

Within 100 days the changes start:

* The national anthem is replaced by "I Love You, You Love Me. We're a Happy Fam-i-ly" -- the Barney Show theme song. After hearing this, athletes refuse to leave the locker room to start their games. They can't bring themselves to try and beat the other team.

* Legislation is passed outlawing being cranky.

* Government revenues from various "sin taxes" drop drastically. No one drinks, smokes or gambles. That would make Barney sad. The economy crumbles.

Oh well, it does keep them quiet while fixing dinner.

Here's a kiss from me to you, Glen Burnie.

*

Barney may have been the show stopper at last week's parade, but the rest of the event was terrific on its own -- weather included.

The addition of the Boumi Temple parade units to the lineup gave the crowd a show they will remember for years.

Elvis was even sighted, sitting tall in the saddle with the Anne Arundel County Horseman's Association.

Parade chairman Joe Corcoran and his committee deserve a round of applause and thanks for their hard work.

*

An afternoon of music, crafts, food and entertainment will highlight the eighth annual Family Fun Fest/Multi Ethnic Fair, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Arundel Center North Plaza.

The main stage will be the scene of a number of musical performances, including the U.S. Army Field Volunteers, the Polka Kids, dancers from the Innis Na Glas School of Irish Dancing and the county police band.

A karate demonstration will be given by students of Martial Art of Karate.

Children can greet popular characters McGruff the Crime Dog, the Drug Abuse and Resistance Education (DARE) Bear, Sparky the Fire Dog, Chester the Library Dog, Buttons the Clown and Razzle the Clown.

Volunteers will be working in the children's tent, teaching crafts and face painting.

Mr. Spooky the Magician and the Pasadena 4-H Team will be performing throughout the day.

Volunteers are still needed to assist with setting up, breaking down, helping with main stage activities, children's crafts, manning the information booth and other activities.

The show will go on, rain or shine.

Admission is free. Parking is available in the Glen Burnie municipal parking garage or the public parking areas between Crain and Ritchie highways, north of Baltimore-Annapolis Boulevard.

To accommodate the event, the intersection of Crain Highway and Baltimore-Annapolis Boulevard will be closed from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday.

*

Teen volunteers, ages 12 and up, are needed to assist with the North County Library's summer reading program.

The library is at 1010 Eastway, across from Harundale Mall.

Activities will include staffing the registration table, organizing and distributing registration packets and helping direct participants.

Volunteers are needed from early June through July 25, when the program ends.

Anyone interested in applying must complete a form at the branch by Saturday.

Information: 222-6270.

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