The National Capital Park and Planning Commission has approved a plan for a new 2,500-seat indoor arena on the site of the former Marlboro Race Track.

Construction for the proposed arena is scheduled to begin in six months and is estimated to cost $7.5 million.

The arena, an extension of the Upper Marlboro Equestrian Center, will house a full-service restaurant and a 300-by-150 foot indoor surface suitable for staging other events.

"It will be a beautiful, multipurpose building," said Bill Chambers, general manager of the Equestrian Center. The commission hopes to stage mostly equestrian events, "but we anticipate concerts, conventions, trade shows, art exhibits and sports as well," Chambers said.

"Right now, we are primarily a summertime facility, but this will allow us to be active year-round."


The Bowie City Council will hold a public hearing at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8, at City Hall, 2614 Kenhill Dr.

Among items to be discussed is the master plan for the rehabilitation of the city's Belair Mansion.

City officials encourage all residents to attend the hearing. For more information, call 262-6200.

The council has one vacancy on its advisory planning board. The board's 10 members are responsible for advising the council on immediate and long-range problems in planning, environmental protection and city enhancement.

Residents interested in serving on the board should submit a resume that includes a daytime phone number to the Bowie City Council, c/o Edith Maylock, City Clerk, 2614 Kenhill Dr., Bowie, Md. 20715. For more information, call 262-6200, ext. 217.

And, the Foggy Bottom band will appear at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 6, at Bowie's Allen Pond Park. The band, which specializes in country, bluegrass and folk music, will perform free. Listeners are encouraged to bring picnics, blankets and lawn chairs.

The concert will be canceled in case of rain. To confirm, call 249-3316. For more information on this and other concerts, call 262-6200, ext. 303.