NO MATTER whether you're young or old, there is something magical about spending a warm summer evening at a carnival. Familiar sounds, sights and mouth-watering smells entice you to forget about your problems for a while and have some good, wholesome family fun.
The fun starts next week in Pasadena at the annual Firemen's Carnival, sponsored by the Riviera Beach Volunteer Fire Company.
The weeklong fund-raiser will be open from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 6 p.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday on the firehouse grounds, 8506 Fort Smallwood Road.
Along the midway, games will test your skills and luck, including the Big Six and Las Vegas wheels. Rides are available for younger children and quite a few for the big kid in all of us. Bingo (my spouse's favorite game after the luck dries up at the money wheels) is scheduled nightly in the second-floor hall.
There's no admission, but you pay for each ride or game. Budget-stretching $10 ride-all-you-want nights are Monday through Thursday.
Volunteers will cook and serve those delicious crab cakes, pit beef and ham sandwiches, sausage, french fries, pizza, hot dogs, funnel cakes and sodas.
The company is also selling chances to win $1,000, $500 or $250 in the annual carnival raffle.
Come early on Saturday and watch the annual firemen's parade starting at 6 p.m. Equipment from all over the area will be featured. The parade will start from Riviera Community Improvement Association's playground on Meadow Road, down Fort Smallwood Road past the fire house and end at Rugby Road next to the post office.
Information: 410-255-1314 or 410-255-3636.
Democratic Club bingo
Stoney Creek Democratic Club will hold its monthly dinner/bingo Sunday at the clubhouse on Fort Smallwood Road.
The doors will open at noon, with early-bird games at 1 p.m.
Admission is $20 and includes a hot platter and beverage, 20 games of bingo with a guaranteed $400 jackpot game.
Special packages will also be sold.
Information: 410-255-4611 or 410-636-2622.
Music at Downs Park
Take Dad out for an evening of soothing classical music at Downs Park on Sunday.
The U.S. Army Woodwind Quintet will be in concert starting at 6 p.m. in the Bayside amphitheater.
Bring a picnic supper and chairs or blankets for seating. No alcohol is permitted in the park. Bikes, skateboards and roller-skates are not permitted in the concert area. Pets are welcome but are restricted to the grassy areas to the extreme left and right of the stage area.
The concert is free, but park entrance fees usually apply. For military band performances, the usual $4 fee is waived if you enter the park a half-hour before or after the scheduled performance time.
The 1999 Bayside Concert Series is funded by the Pasadena Business Association, several local businesses, and a grant from the county Cultural Arts Foundation and the Maryland Arts Council.
Donations to benefit the concert series maybe made to Friends of Downs Park.
Information: 410-222-6230 (every day except Tuesdays) or check out the parks Web site at sailor.lib.md.us/docs/dpark.
Tennis lessons for kids
County Rec and Parks will sponsor tennis lessons for children 6 to 13 next week through Aug. 6 at High Point and Lake Shore elementary schools.
The six-week program is scheduled two days per week for 50 minutes. Lesson hours are 8: 20, 9: 20, 10: 20, 11: 20 a.m. and 12: 20 p.m. The cost is $30 per child.
High Point Elementary is at 924 Duvall Highway. Lake Shore Elementary is at 4531 Mountain Road.
The Mountain Road Kiwanis Club recently had its 35th annual awards banquet honoring finalists in the John Wilson Sr. Memorial Essay Contest and the winners of the club's scholarship awards.
This year's essay topic, "What Does Pasadena Need Most," was warmly received by local students.
A committee of Kiwanis members picked five finalists, and their compositions were read by all Kiwanis members at a regular meeting to help pick the overall grand award winner.
The finalists were: Jessica Vetock, St. Jane Frances School; Sarah Pennini, High Point Elementary; Samantha Taylor, Jacobsville Elementary; Andrew Amend, Freetown Elementary; and Jacqueline Lynch, Riviera Beach Elementary.
Essay finalists were awarded a $50 U.S. Savings Bond and a plaque at the banquet.
Vetock was named overall winner and received a special plaque presented by Don Allen, essay contest chairman.
Seniors Jamie Wheeler from Chesapeake High and Tracey Sigmore from Northeast High were also presented scholarship checks for $750 from Dave Blanch, scholarship committee chairman.
The club meets Tuesday evenings at Marks Grill on Fort Smallwood Road at 6: 30 p.m.
If you have information for the Pasadena report, please call Laura Sullivan at 410-315-8937 during the day or leave a message on the tip line after hours.