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Celebrating a Favorite Daughter



The Helen Keller Festival, June 22 to 25, takes place at her home, Ivy Green, in the northwest Alabama town of Tuscumbia. Celebrating the remarkable woman who was blind and deaf from age 2, the festival includes a parade, an arts and crafts show featuring Southern traditions, street entertainment and outdoor performances of "The Miracle Worker." There will also be tours of the home and visits to the water pump where Keller learned her first word. For more information, contact the Helen Keller Festival, 300 W. North Commons, Tuscumbia, AL 35674; telephone (256) 383-4066, Internet


Mickey Rooney and the Munchkins are honored guests at the 25th annual Judy Garland Festival, June 22 to 24 in Grand Rapids, Garland's birthplace. Highlights include a candlelight vigil and tours of her home; "Munchkinmania: the Game Show" (Oz trivia); a large-screen showing of a restored "Wizard of Oz"; a Garland and Oz memorabilia show; and a seminar and field trip on "Childhood Influences on the Life of Judy Garland." For more information, contact the Children's Discovery Museum, P.O. Box 724, Grand Rapids, MN 55744; tel. (800) 664-5839, Internet


The Lewis and Clark Festival, June 22 to 25 in Great Falls, aims to bring visitors back to 1805, when the Corps of Discovery was camped near here, along the Missouri River. Actors in historic dress, including two portraying Lewis and Clark, talk about their four-year journey. Also planned: dramatic readings from the explorers' diaries, blacksmithing and boat-building demonstrations, float trips, botanic walks and buffalo burgers. Explorer wannabes can join a weekend-long treasure hunt. For more information, contact the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, P.O. Box 2424, Great Falls, MT 59403; tel. (406) 452-5661, Internet


The Grand Review 2000, June 9 to 11 in Harrisburg, commemorates the 135th anniversary of the end of the Civil War. More than 4,000 Union and Confederate reenactors are expected, including a gathering of African American troops. They will march through downtown Harrisburg. Reproductions of the Monitor and the Merrimac will demonstrate naval tactics on the Susquehanna River. Other highlights: a simulated river-crossing battle, period-dress ball and living history encampment. For more information, contact the Great American Civil War Society, 2449 Heidlersburg Road, Gettysburg, PA 17325; tel. (717) 909-8830.

Rhode Island

Tall Ships 2000, June 29 to July 2 in Newport, begins with a lighted parade of ships. Other events include open houses on the visiting ships, tugs of war, sail handling contests, maritime art festival, sailboat races, band concerts and fireworks. Ships include Ireland's national vessel, a replica of a Spanish galleon and a replica of the 18th century warship built by MGM for the movie "Mutiny on the Bounty." For more information, contact Tall Ships Newport, 17B Bowen's Wharf, Newport, RI 02840; tel. (401) 847-8206, Internet


June 16 is Bloomsday all over Dublin. That's the day that all the events in James Joyce's "Ulysses" took place (the year: 1904). Joyce devotees trace the path of the book's hero, Leopold Bloom, beginning the day with a special breakfast in South Bank Restaurant (where Bloom ate kidneys). Then it's on to lunch at Davy Byrnes, where everyone orders Gorgonzola and burgundy. Also scheduled: parades and readings on the Strand and at the Joyce Museum (both are in Sandymount, outside Dublin). At every place mentioned in the book, people often arrive in period costume. For more details, contact the Irish Tourist Board, 345 Park Ave., 17th Floor, New York, NY 10154; tel. (800) 223-6470; Internet


Highlights of Turkey's summer festival season include the seventh annual Aspendos International Opera and Ballet Festival (June 10 to July 10) and the Kinkpinar Oil Wrestling Tournament in Edirne (June 28 to July 4). In Aspendos five operas, three ballets and a concert are held at one of the largest open-air Roman theaters in Asia Minor, seating 15,000; the natural acoustics are so good that even a whisper can be heard across the theater. The oil wrestling event began as a way for the sultan to keep his troops in shape and has been held every year since 1640. For more information, contact the Turkish Tourist Office, 821 United Nations Plaza, New York, NY 10017; tel. (212) 687-2194, Internet

Events appears monthly.

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