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Fishing for poets, a St. Pat's parade and monster trucks

February 11, 2007|Amy Hubbard

Astoria, Ore.

Feb. 23-25: It started as an idea tossed around among fishermen over beers at Astoria's Wet Dog Cafe: Let's create an event where people who work on the water -- and their families and friends -- can gather to share experiences. Doreen Broderick, wife of Fisher Poets Gathering founder Jon Broderick, says the event, which turns 10 this year, has grown from stories and poetry to include photography, paintings, songs and more. From the 1998 poem "Night Drift" by Holly Hughes: "Sometimes I hear the humpbacks sleeping,/ their quiet whoosh steady as heartbeats,/ their bodies gentle and tender,/ nudging each other/ in the long `pull of the tide."

The gathering includes readings, literary and artistic workshops and art exhibits at various downtown venues. Admission buttons $10 for weekend, $5 per day, at Wet Dog Cafe, 144 11th St. Info:, (800) 875-6807.

San Francisco

March 17: Don't expect everyone to be Irish at the St. Patrick's Day parade here, but do expect plenty of celebrating (green beer optional). The joy of being Irish (if only for a day) means taking to the streets at this annual event, which at 155 years old is billed as the oldest and largest St. Pat's parade west of the Mississippi. Among the marchers: bagpipers, Irish dancers and even Irish wolfhounds. The parade is followed by a family festival at the Civic Center Plaza, with live music, face painting, food -- and, yes, a beer garden.

Parade at 11:30 a.m. at 2nd and Market streets; family festival at the Civic Center Plaza, at Polk and McAllister streets. (415) 675-9885,

Las Vegas

March 24: It's a bash that demands exclamation points. The Monster Jam World Finals! Massive trucks! Huge obstacles! Tons of crashes! Las Vegas' Sam Boyd Stadium hosts this world-championship event, where the puny humans inside those rip-snorting trucks will compete for world championship titles in racing and freestyle categories.

Sam Boyd Stadium, 7000 E. Russell Road. $30 adults, $15 children 12 and younger;

-- Amy Hubbard

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