At Merriweather


August 29, 2002|By Helen B. Jones | Helen B. Jones,SUN STAFF

She dropped out of Columbia University to sign a record deal with Columbia Records, and she hasn't looked back. After jumping from Columbia to Clive Davis' J Records, piano prodigy and singer Alicia Keys recorded Songs in A Minor. And the rest is recent history. The 2001 CD was a smash hit -- especially the song "Fallin' " -- and earned the 21-year-old Keys five Grammy Awards this year. At 7:30 tonight, Keys will perform at Merriweather Post Pavilion, 10475 Little Patuxent Parkway in Columbia. Tickets are $39.50. Call 410-481-SEAT.

Stamp stampede

Balpex, the annual three-day stamp show of the Baltimore Philatelic Society, gets under way tomorrow at Marriott's Hunt Valley Inn, Shawan Road at Interstate 83. The event includes a stamp auction, stamp exhibitions, collection evaluations, dealer tables and activities for young collectors. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $4, good for all three days. Call 410-332-4741 or visit

State of the art

One art gallery, four brand-new shows. School 33 Art Center, 1427 Light St., unveils works by Bonnie Crawford, Young W. Lee, Albert Schweitzer, Renee Rendine and Foon Sham this Saturday. Crawford's work, an installation called Imprint, explores the idea of the skin as personal territory and a malleable boundary. Schweitzer's New Work features deliberately childlike paintings / bas reliefs done from realistic photographs of people (see below). Lee addresses political and social concerns in her New Work, primarily sculpture and drawings. Cell: A Site Specific Sculpture, created by Rendine and Sham, parallels the cycle of growth and reproduction of insects that make cocoons. On Sept. 7, there will be gallery talks (2:15 p.m.) and receptions (3 p.m.) for all four shows. The exhibits continue through Oct. 4. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. Call 410-396-4641.

No mallets needed

You can crack crabs this Labor Day weekend and wander through a crab maze as well. The Maryland Blue Crab Corn Maze opens to the public on Saturday and remains open weekends through Halloween. The 2-mile crab-shaped maze meanders through a 5-acre cornfield at North Run Farm, 1701 Greenspring Valley Road in Stevenson. The farm also features a small-animal zoo and a miniature hay-bale maze for children. Regular hours are 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturdays and noon to 8 p.m. Sundays. Opening-day hours are 11 a.m. till dusk; Labor Day hours (Monday) are 11 a.m. till 8 p.m. Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for children under 12, free for children under 4. Call 410-296-6293.

Last call for State Fair

You've only got five more days to visit or revisit the 121st Maryland State Fair. You can still catch rug-hooking and wood-carving demonstrations, cattle and swine shows, the Xtreme Air Stunt Show, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, thoroughbred racing and robotics displays. And don't forget funnel cake, corn dogs and midway rides. Hours are 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., through Monday. Admission is $5, free for children under 12. The fairgrounds are located at York and Timonium roads, Timonium. Call 410-252-0200, Ext. 227, or visit

Labor Day 5K Run & Walk

They say you keep burning calories long after you quit exercising. So if you've got your eye on a big Labor Day picnic, why not run or walk first in the Labor Day 5K Run & 1 Mile Fun Walk? The event begins at 8:30 a.m. at Bay Cafe, 2809 Boston St. Registration is $20 in advance ($12 children), $25 on race day ($15 children). Race-day registration begins at 7:30 a.m. Monday. Prizes will be awarded to the top male and female finishers and to age-group winners. Proceeds benefit patient care at St. Agnes HealthCare. Call 410-368-3155 or 410-377-8882.

They don't scrimp on shrimp

Who cares about a hot dog-eating duel on Coney Island when there's a shrimp-eating contest right here in Charm City. Spend your lunch break tomorrow watching the workings of the 10 finalists in the first Old Bay Peel & Eat Shrimp Classic. These gluttons for small seafood have 10 minutes to peel and eat as many Old Bay-seasoned shrimp as they can. Chosen from more than 1,600 people who entered the gustatory competition, they'll be vying for a $10,000 grand prize. The event takes place from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Harborplace Amphitheatre, Light and Pratt streets. Call 800-632-5847.

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