Sights of the Season Festivities: To keep your calendar cheerful, here's a roundup of the many merry celebrations planned throughout the region.

November 15, 1998|By Randi Kest | Randi Kest,Contributing Writer

In Chesapeake City, a barbershop quartet practices its notes. The scents of a holiday feast and homemade cookies waft through the air at Gunston Hall Plantation in Virginia, while cannons and bayonets are dusted and shined in Williamsburg. A log-house settlement in Salem, W. Va., prepares for a Scottish-Irish and German holiday. Meanwhile, Philadelphia's Hard Rock Cafe prepares for a jolly visit, and Peter Pan readies his big show in Odessa, Del.

The holidays are coming and with them a flock of regional festivities. Here's a look at ways to fill in the blanks on your holiday calendar.


* WORCESTER COUNTY: More than 800,000 bulbs light the way at the sixth annual Winterfest of Lights in Ocean City's Northside Park. A 10-minute train ride aboard the park's Winterfest Express takes visitors past displays of downhill skiers, Santa playing softball and Jurassic Park dinosaurs. Lights will continue to shine nightly from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. until Jan. 3. Enter on the bay side of 127th Street. There is no admission charge to see the light exhibit, but the train ride through the exhibit costs $2 for adults, $1 for children 6 to 17, free for children 5 and under. Call 800-OC-OCEAN or 410-250-0125.

* ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY: The annual "Lights on the Bay," a 2]-mile drive-through light display in Sandy Point State Park in Annapolis, opens Nov. 20 and continues through Jan. 3. Musical performances are scheduled for December. Sandy Point State Park is at Exit 32, off U.S. 50 East. Admission: $12 a car, $50 a bus. Call 410-295-3161.

Annapolis' annual Candlelight Pub Crawl will begin at Governor Calvert House on State Circle and continue, by candlelight, to either Griffin's or Middleton Tavern. After supper, the Maryland Inn will serve dessert and coffee. Crawls take place at 7 p.m. Sundays and Thursdays from Dec. 6 to Dec. 20. Price: $73 a person. Call 410-263-5401.

The 16th annual Eastport Yacht Club's Lights Parade is Dec. 12 and will again travel Spa Creek to Severn River and up "Ego Alley" to City Dock. This free event is a spectacle of beautifully decorated boats. Boats can be seen in and around Annapolis harbor from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Call 410-263-0415.

* MONTGOMERY COUNTY: The third annual 3 1/2-mile course through Seneca Creek State Park in Gaithersburg will feature animated and stationary light displays from Nov. 27 through Jan. 2. Hours: 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Closed Christmas Day. Admission: $10 a car, $25 for 15-passenger vans, $50 for buses. Call 301-258-6350 Ext. 401.

Custom-made displays with garden and nature themes highlight Brookside Gardens' Garden of Lights event Nov. 27 through Jan. 3. The park is at 1800 Glenallan Avenue in Wheaton. Admission: $10 a car or van. Bus trips must be arranged in advance by calling 301-962-1457. Call 301-962-1453.

* PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY: In Upper Marlboro, Watkins Regional Park, 301 Watkins Park Drive, is transformed by the 12th Annual Winter Festival of Lights. The drive-through light display features more than 450,000 colored lights outlining buildings, shrubbery, trees and roadways, and is open Nov. 27 through Jan. 3 from dark to 9:30 p.m. Admission: free; canned food donations are encouraged. Call 301-699-2545.

* CARROLL COUNTY: The Westminster Holiday House Tour features more than five historic homes along Court and Willis streets, each decorated for the holidays and filled with seasonal music. Doors will be open from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 5. Admission: $10 before Nov. 20; $12 on day of tour. Call 410-848-7967 Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

* CECIL COUNTY: Chesapeake City presents a 19th-century Christmas Candlelight House and Walking Tour along the historic main strip, Bohemia Avenue. Featured will be carriage rides ($4) and barbershop quartets, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Dec. 12. Admission: $10 reserved; $12 at the door. Call 410-885-5377.

* SOMERSET COUNTY: Cris-field's Christmas tree lighting and caroling celebration begins Dec. 12 at 5:30 p.m. at the city dock and continues until 7 p.m., when the Wonderland of Trees, more than 15 holiday trees decorated by area organizations, will be lighted for the first time at Governor Tawes Homeplace on Asbury Avenue. The tree display will remain lighted nightly from 6 to 8 until Dec. 18. On Dec. 19, hours will be 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.; at 4:30 p.m. a reception and auction of the decorated trees will take place. Admission: $3 for adults, free for children 12 and younger. Call 410-651-2968 or 800-521-9189.

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