Held yearly in September in the Inner Harbor (formerly held at Mt. Vernon Place) in the heart of beautiful downtown Baltimore. The book fair features over 100 vendors, exhibitors, and authors. You'll find new books, used books, rare and unusual books; books for sale, books for trade and free books. There are workshops, panel discussions, poetry readings and hands-on projects for kids. And what would a festival be without live music, costumed characters, and good food! And all of this takes place along two sides of the world famous Baltimore Inner Harbor and within walking distance of the National Aquarium and the American Visionary Arts museum. If you like to read you'll love the Baltimore Book Festival.
Kinetic Sculpture Races
Beginning at the American Visionary Arts Museum, this fun race of human powered 'art' runs near Fort McHenry, through Federal Hill, around the Inner Harbor, through Little Italy, past the Vietnam Veterans memorial at Canton Water park, then up to Paterson Park near the monument to General Pulaski and the Patterson Pagoda and finally ending at back at the museum where they started. But the sites along the route are hardly noticed! The sculptures range from Giant Poodles and caterpillars to bike with duckpins hanging above it and a horseless Amish buggy. They need to negotiate various terrains; city streets, around a pier, a sand trap and my favorite, the mud pit! Some of the entries, like 'Fluffy' are back year after year while others don't make it through their first year. And the spectators, many in costume, just add to the overall atmosphere of fun! Besides prizes for the best flip and the best breakdown, the most sought after prize is the Grand mediocre Prize given to the team who finishes dead-Middle!
The largest Anime Festival east of the Mississippi. This annual convention celebrates Anime (Japanese Animated shows and Movies), Manga (Japanese Graphic Novels) and other aspects of Japanese Culture, or non-Japanese animation and comics. It runs 3 days and is held in the downtown Baltimore Convention Center, a few block from the Inner Harbor. Anime Viewings, Panels, Celebrity guests, music, dancing, costume contests, artwork and a huge dealer room attracted over 30,000 attendees in 2012. At least 1/4 of the guests cosplay (dress as a favorite character).
Baltimore Running Festival
The only marathon on the country that goes through a zoo! Federal Hil, Fell's Point, Lake Montebello, The Maryland Zoo, Patapsaco Park, Canton Waterfront, this isn't just a race, it's a tour of some of the best areas in Baltimore. There's the full marathon, the half marathon, an Armed Forces race, a wheelchair race, a 5K and the kids 'fun run' all sequenced to end together so athletes of all types can meet up and celebrate at the finish line. This year 3,025 people (1300 from out of state) finished the full marathon at an average time of 04:25:39. Another 10,204 ran the half marathon, 3,181 ran the 5K and 1,091 four-person teams ran the relay. twenty-five 'official' charity teams ran aloung with dozens of less formal groups. The top male and female marathon runners will receive a prize of $25,000 and if they are maryland residents, a $1,000 bonus.
The 2012 UnderArmour Baltimore Running Festival
Maryland Film Festival
This four-day event takes place the first weekend of May. Each year the festival screens approximately 50 feature films and 75 short films of all varieties, including a sampling of cutting-edge international features, a vintage silent film with live musical accompaniment, a classic 3-D film. The hundreds of filmmakers who have hosted screenings within Maryland Film Festival include such names as Barry Levinson, Jonathan Demme and John Waters (who also selects and hosts one feature film). Click here to download a PDF of the MFF program. (18.3 MB)
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