Saturday, October 4, 2003

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Middfest Tips

The culture: In its 21st year of celebrating world cultures, the annual Middletown festival runs 10 a.m.-10 p.m. today and noon-8 p.m. Sunday and spotlights Scotland with food, music and exhibits. There will be a large display of tartans; a vintage golf exhibit; talks by Arthur Herman, author of How the Scots Invented the Modern World; and items from the Scottish National Museum.

The music: The modern Scottish sounds of Clann an Drumma, Celtic rock from Knocknagael, bagpipe music from the Cincinnati Caledonian Pipes and Drums, folk, Afro-Brazilian dance troupe, more.

For kids: The main attraction for kids is a 30-foot model of the Loch Ness Monster. There are also many Harry Potter activities (Quiddich Games, trivia) as a tribute to author J.K Rowling, who lives in Scotland. Children's entertainers Toucan Jam perform their world- inspired program with puppets and exotic instruments around the clock.

Food: Includes Scottish beers and single malt Scotches, Scottish shortbread and meat pies. There is also an international food court drawing from relationships made during previous festivals - look for food from Korea, Brazil, Eastern Europe, Turkey and Italy.

Getting there: It's centered at Donham Plaza in downtown Middletown. From I-75, take the Middletown exit and travel west on Ohio 122, follow to University Boulevard (no turn) and turn left on Main Street into the city center and parking garage. Admission is $5 for adults, free under age 12. (513) 425-7707.

Flower and Farm Fest

Autumn extravaganza: From the producers of the Cincinnati Flower Show comes the Cincinnati Flower and Farm Fest at Coney Island all weekend. Family activities include a scarecrow exhibit, trick-or-treat trail and hayrides. There are also displays of cool-weather annuals, fall-blooming perennials, gourds and trees and shrubs of seasonal interest. Hours are noon-7 p.m. today-Sunday and next Saturday-Oct. 12, I-275 and Kellogg Avenue, Anderson Township. $8, $5 age 3-12 ($5 parking). 872-5194.

AppleButter Festival

Old-fashioned fun: The Pioneer Farm at Hueston Woods State Park celebrates the season with two days of apple butter making, pioneer crafts, homestead tours, hot cider and more, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. today-Sunday, Brown and Doty roads, five miles north of Oxford. Event also includes a Civil War encampment of the Ohio Valley Civil War Association featuring drills, 19th century medical practices and storytelling. New this year is making and selling kettle corn on-site. $2, free under age 12. (513) 523-8005.

Reggae Run

Run and party: Celebrate the 10th anniversary of the 5K Reggae Run in Memory of Maria Olberding at 6 p.m. today at Ault Park in Mount Lookout. Olberding was training for a marathon when she was slain in 1994. Signs lead to the registration area, where more than 7,000 walkers, runners, party-goers and volunteers gathered last year. Proceeds go to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Ohio. $25. (877) 206-9474 or www.reggaerun.com.

Jason Nebel

E-mail: jnebel@enquirer.com; fax: 768-8016




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