See Stars by Starlight

The Comcast Outdoor Film Festival screens free feature films on a giant outdoor screen 10 nights in a row starting Friday at the Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda (Metro: Grosvenor-Strathmore). Food vendors begin selling their specialties at 6:30, and the projector rolls at 8:30. The schedule: "Shrek 2," Friday; "Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban," Saturday; "West Side Story," Sunday; "Million Dollar Baby," Monday; "Grease," Tuesday; "The Birds," Wednesday; "Raiders of the Lost Ark," Thursday; "Ray," Aug. 19; "Spider-Man 2," Aug. 20; and "Shark Tale," Aug. 21. No tickets are needed. Call 301-816-6958 or 301-581-5100.

The First Americans

More than 800 dancers and drummers from dozens of North American Indian tribes will perform and compete at the National Powwow Friday through Sunday at MCI Center, 601 F St. NW (Metro: Gallery Place-Chinatown). The event, sponsored by the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian, will be open Friday and Saturday from 10 to 10, and Sunday from 10 to 8. Grand entry ceremonies begin Friday and Saturday at noon and 6, and Sunday at 1. There will also be crafts sales and specialty food vendors. Admission costs $12 per day, seniors and ages 4 to 11 $10, younger free; a three-day pass is $30. The museum, at Fourth Street and Independence Avenue SW, will host free films, talks, storytelling and crafts demonstrations daily from 10 to 5:30, and a free shuttle will operate between the museum and MCI Center from 10 to 4. Call 202-633-1000 (TDD: 202-357-1729), or visit See story on Page 16.

Desperate Measures

"Urinetown," the Tony Award-winning musical fantasy set in a Gotham-like metropolis where a water shortage has forced extreme conservation measures, opens Tuesday at Signature Theatre, 3806 S. Four Mile Run, Arlington. Performances continue through Oct. 9. Tickets cost $31 to $55 from To order, call 703-218-6500; for information, call 703-820-9771.

Celebration of a People

The annual Kunta Kinte Heritage Festival celebrates African and African American history and culture Saturday from 10 to 8 and Sunday from 10 to 7 at the Anne Arundel County Fairgrounds, on Route 178 north of Route 450 in Crownsville. The Legendary Orioles, Sankofa Dance Theater and other musicians, ensembles and dance troupes will entertain all weekend. Vendors will offer crafts and food specialties, the Chesapeake Children's Museum will host storytelling, hands-on workshops and games, and community organizations will staff a Family Education Tent with exhibits and health screenings. Admission is $7, seniors and ages 4 to 12 $3, younger free. Call 410-349-0338.

Keeping Hope Alive

The Washington National Opera's Opera Camp for Kids is staging a free performance of Hans Krasa's "Brundibar," a one-act opera for children in which good ultimately triumphs over evil, Tuesday at 6 on the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center (Metro: Foggy Bottom-GWU, with free shuttles). The story of two children who battle a tyrannical organ grinder to save their sick mother was first performed in the Terezin Nazi concentration camp during World War II. Ela Weissberger, a camp survivor who sang in the original cast, will introduce the show. No tickets are needed. (Other scheduled performances at Round House Theatre are fully booked.) Call 202-467-4600.

No Laptops Here

More than 200 exhibitors from around the world will exhibit, buy, sell and trade vintage and contemporary fountain pens and other writing instruments at the 13th annual Washington Pen SuperShow Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 5 at the Sheraton Premiere Hotel, 8661 Leesburg Pike, Vienna. More than 200 custom inks and dozens of pen nibs will be available for sampling. Admission is $6, younger than 12 free. Call 703-448-1234.

A Toy for All Ages

Lego building block hobbyists from across the United States, meeting at a weekend convention, are holding a public expo of their most elaborate creations Sunday from 11 to 3:30 on the Arlington campus of George Mason University, 3401 N. Fairfax Dr. (Metro: Virginia Square-GMU). Cathedrals, castles, space stations, pirate ships and an operating railroad layout are among the highlights. Admission is $7, younger than 3 free. Call 703-474-5633.


Washington's own National Aquarium hosts its annual Shark Day Saturday from 9 to 5, with storytelling, interactive games, hands-on crafts and staff talks highlighting the role of sharks in the ocean ecosystem. The aquarium's sharks will dine at 2. The National Aquarium is in the Commerce Department Building at 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW (Metro: Federal Triangle). Admission is $5, seniors $4, ages 2 to 10 $2, younger free. Call 202-482-2825.

Fair Weather

* The 57th annual Montgomery County Agricultural Fair opens Friday at 3 and continues through Aug. 20 at the county fairground in Gaithersburg, at Route 355 and Perry Parkway, with livestock displays, agricultural exhibits, concerts, rides, games and other entertainment. Starting Saturday, the fair opens at 10 a.m. daily and closes at midnight (last entry at 11). Admission is $4 Friday, $7 other days; ages 7 and younger always free. Call 301-926-3100 or visit

* The 56th annual Prince William County Fair, Virginia's largest, opens Friday and continues through Aug. 20 at the county fairground, on Dumfries Road off Route 234 in Manassas. Agricultural and livestock exhibits and a midway with rides, games and entertainment open Friday and Monday through Aug. 19 at 3 and Saturdays and Sundays at noon; they close Fridays and Saturdays at midnight, other days at 11. Special events include truck and tractor pulls Friday at 7 and Saturday at 6:30, and demolition derbies Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 7. Admission at the gate is $15, seniors and ages 3 to 6 $7, younger free. Call 703-368-0173 or visit

The Cannons Roar

The U.S. Army Band hosts its annual performance of Tchaikovsky's "1812" Overture and other popular works Friday at 8 at the Sylvan Theater on the grounds of the Washington Monument. The orchestra will be accompanied by the Presidential Salute Battery of the 3rd U.S. Infantry (the Old Guard), firing multiple cannons. No tickets are needed. Call 703-696-3399.

-- Compiled by Barry Barriere

Sankofa Dance Theater will perform at the Kunta Kinte Heritage Festival in Crownsville.Clint Eastwood and Hilary Swank star in "Million Dollar Baby," screening Monday during the 10-night Comcast Outdoor Film Festival at Strathmore in North Bethesda.Kim Toll created "Red Church" with Lego building blocks for the 2003 Brickfest.