- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 5, 2002

Corn signs

Aliens might have made the crop circles in the summer flick "Signs," but the corn mazes popping up in local fields are the work of enterprising farmers, rather than extraterrestrials. The Corn Maze in The Plains is the latest attraction to spring up in the area for fans of the cornstalk labyrinths, and promises more than two miles worth of twists and turns. Check it out from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday (it runs through Nov. 3) at The Plains, intersection of Interstate 66 and Route 245. Tickets are from $5 to $6. 540/456-7339.

Dinner and a sleuthing

Dirk Kelly, a senior partner in a high-powered law firm, gets the art collecting bug and informs his staff they need to start working more efficiently so that he can get more money to buy paintings. Shortly after, he's dead and his staffers are the most likely culprits. Think you can figure out the killer before the police? Why not give it a shot in the interactive dinner theater comedy "Judged to Die" at 8 p.m. Saturday at Dave and Buster's, 11301 Rockville Pike, Bethesda. Tickets (including dinner) are $32.95. 301/230-5151.

Arts smorgasbord

Imagine the vast array of programs the Kennedy Center puts on, all crammed into one day, and that's pretty much what the Open House Arts Festival entails. It features performances from Boris Willis Moves, the Capitol Steps, Eddie From Ohio, the National Symphony Orchestra, the Washington Ballet and plenty of others, as well as information booths from local arts organizations. Stop by from 11:45 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Kennedy Center, F Street and New Hampshire Avenue NW. It's free. 202/467-4600.

Cosmic rock

Getting a platinum record is one thing, but selling more than 80 million records over the course of a career is another thing altogether. Bill Haley and the Comets have done it, though, and Al Rappa (a Comet since 1956) now leads the group known for rockin' around the clock. The Comets run through classic tunes from 9 p.m. to midnight tomorrow (with a dance lesson at 8:30 p.m.) at Chevy Chase Ballroom, 5207 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Tickets are $15. 703/359-9882.

Fancy footwork

Whether it's the fleet feet or catchy Celtic tunes, "Riverdance The Show" continues to capture large audiences wherever it goes. Since the show started in 1995, more than 12 million people around the world have seen the celebration of Irish music, song and dance, which shows how the Emerald Isle's traditions are linked to dance the world over. See it at 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Wolf Trap's Filene Center, 1624 Trap Road, Vienna. Tickets are from $16 to $70. 703/218-6500.

Soldier sounds

It's hard to know what composer Robert Kurka might have been capable of had he not died of leukemia at an early age. One of the works he left behind, though, is "The Good Soldier Schweik Suite," that is similar to an opera he developed of the same name. The All Classical Music Guide likens the military protagonist to Beetle Bailey in his distrust of authority, and the piece plays with jazz elements and rhythms. Hear the U.S. Army Field Band play this and other works at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Ashton United Methodist Church, 17314 New Hampshire Ave., Ashton, Md. It's free. 301/677-6586.

Art from inside

Painter Sherry Zvares Sanabria doesn't have to worry about whether the walls talk or not. She gains an amazing amount of insight from them anyway. In "Echoes of Memory," a series of 26 paintings shows her ability to capture building facades and interiors, from European homes to long-abandoned slave quarters in Virginia. See the remarkable results starting from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow (the exhibit runs Monday to Friday through January) at the Octagon, 1735 New York Ave. NW. Admission is free. 202/638-3221.

September 11 remembrance

The many September 11 ceremonies and tribute concerts going on in the area include the unfurling of a large American flag by the first rescue workers to respond to the attack on the Pentagon. The ceremony begins at 9:15 a.m. Wednesday at Gateway Park, 1300 Lee Highway, Arlington. That night a candelight vigil takes begins at 7:15 p.m. at Freedom Plaza, on Pennsylvania Ave. NW between 13th and 14th streets, with Mayor Anthony A. Williams among those in attendance. In addition, prayer services take place at 8 a.m. (with Desmond Tutu) and 8 p.m. on Wednesday, with faith meditations every hour between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. at Washington National Cathedral, Massachusetts and Wisconsin Avenues NW. 202/537-6200.

• Derek Simmonsen

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