Allegany County Arts Council, (301) 777-2787.
Allegany County Convention and Visitors Bureau, Western Maryland Railway Station, 13 Canal St., Cumberland, (800) 425-2067, www.mdmountainside.com.
C&O Canal National Historic Park Visitors Center, 13 Canal St., Cumberland, (301) 724-3655, www.canalplace.org. The new Visitors Center is a perfect starting point for exploring the trails and waterways of the C&O Canal, a rich piece of Maryland history.
The Castle, 15925 Mount Savage Road, Mount Savage, (301) 264-4645. Who knew there was a historic stone castle in the heart of Allegany County? Stay at this 1840 B&B if you're brave--we hear it's haunted.
George Washington's Headquarters, Riverside Park, Greene Street, Cumberland, (301) 777-5132. Do something educational with your kids for a change and take them to see this one room cabin used by our first president when he was but a fresh-faced, young Army aide.
Gordon-Roberts House, 218 Washington St., Cumberland, (301) 777-8678. If you want to be all prim and proper-like, this 1867 Victorian home is the place to go for teas, beautiful gardens, a tour by a costumed docent, and a Victorian gift shop.
Allegany County Fair and Agricultural Expo, July 20-27, Allegany County Fairgrounds, Route 220 S., I-68 exit 42, Cumberland. (301) 729-1200. Because we all need a slice of good old American pie every once in awhile. Seriously, you do NOT want to miss opening night's Farm Bureau Farm Queen Contest, nor the pig racing and Royal American Circus the rest of the week.
Demolition Derby at the Allegany County Speedway, May 24, Allegany County Fairgrounds, Route 220 south 4 miles, I-68 exit 42, Cumberland. (301) 729-5050. A bunch of cars crashing into each other. 'Nuff said.
Maryland State Chili Cook-off, 5 p.m. August 22-23, Ali-Ghan Shrine Club Picnic Grounds, I-68 exit 46. (301) 722-5970. More than just a chance to eat the best chili around, there's a Miss Chili Pepper contest Friday night and a 5K race followed by chili sampling Saturday morning. You do crave chili after your morning run, don't you? Bring the chillins for train rides and arts and crafts.
Scenic Railroad Father's Day Train Ride, 11:30 a.m. June 15, Western Maryland Scenic Railroad Station, I-68 exit 43C, Cumberland, (301) 759-4400. Trust us, Dad doesn't want another tie for the 15th year in a row. But a train ride? Yes, please!
SPORTS AND RECREATION
Hidden Springs Fishing Rodeo, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. May 30, Hidden Springs Campground, I-68 exit 50 to Pleasant Valley Road, (814) 767-9676. Free fishing for the kiddies ages 15 and under and no license required. With mini-golf, shuffle board, basketball, volleyball, and swimming.
Rocky Gap State Park, 12500 Pleasant Valley Road, Flintstone, (301) 777-2139. Dig out your hiking boots and fishing rod, and spend a long day in the "rugged mountain beauty and solitude" of Rocky Gap. Be adventurous and try kayaking, climbing, rappelling, camping, hunting, fishing, or all of the above.
Vicki Via Dotson Golf Tournament, 9 a.m. July 11, Jack Nicklaus golf course at Rocky Gap State Park, I-68 exit 50, (301) 689-6749. This is allegedly the "premier golf event in Western Maryland," plus it benefits cancer research.
YMCA/Rocky Gap Triathlon, 8 a.m. June 14, Rocky Gap State Park, I-68, exit 50. (301) 777-9622. If you start training now, you still won't be in shape for this grueling .25-mile swim, 9.3-mile bike, and 3.1-mile run through the beautiful state park. But hey, it's good to have a goal.
Bohemia Value, 64 Baltimore St., Cumberland, (301) 722-7300. All sorts of intriguing Bohemian-Czechoslovakian and Russian chandeliers, art glass, porcelain, collectibles, icons, and those neat stacking dolls.
The Clock Shop, Bel Air Plaza, Route 220 near Cresaptown, (800) 348-6969 or (301) 729-6500. There are over 200 clocks on display at this timeless little placecuckoos, sundials, pocket watches, and novelty clocks, to name a few.
812 Park Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201