Opera singers who may be on the verge of professional stardom will come to The Plains on Sunday for the first installment of the Grace Episcopal Church Concert Series. Students of the Washington National Opera's Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program will perform a variety of semi-staged arias and ensembles at 5 p.m. Suggested donation is $20. The four-part musical series is presented by Jacqueline Mars in memory of her mother, Mrs. Forrest Mars. Grace Episcopal Church, 6507 Main St. 540-253-5177 or www.gracechurch.net.


The experts are forecasting more muted fall colors than in recent years, but the reds, oranges and purples are still alluring enough for you to embark on this self-guided driving tour. The route includes 17 local farms, orchards and wineries where you can see cattle, horses, sheep and pigs and choose apples, pumpkins, flowers or herbs from the fall harvest. Brochures, a map and directions are available at libraries, community centers, the Loudoun Convention & Visitors Association and area businesses. Free. Sponsored by Loudoun County Department of Economic Development. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 866-771-7697 or www.loudounfarms.org.


Cue the bugler: The 68th annual horse races take place Saturday at Great Meadow in The Plains. Seven steeplechases may be the day's focus, but the competition is equally fierce on the fashion front in the season's see-and-be-seen event in horse country. (Hint: Leave the jeans in the closet.) Gates open at 10 a.m. for pre-race entertainment including Jack Russell terrier races and a performance by the Washington Redskins Marching Band. The first race is scheduled to go off at 1 p.m. The $60 admission is per vehicle, with as many as six passengers. Bring blankets or chairs. 540-347-2612, 540-253-5000 or www.vagoldcup.com.

Kim Wright with a scarecrow during the 2004 Loudoun Farm Color Tour.