If Bloomsday doesn’t satisfy your urge to run in a crowd, the Bay Area is preparing for its annual rite of spring, the zany “Bay to Breakers” race, which turns 86 this year.
Sponsored by the Examiner, the local afternoon and Sunday newspaper, the May 18 race is expected to attract more than 70,000 serious and not-so-serious runners, as well as some marvelously costumed contenders - all of whom run, jog, or walk the 7.5-mile course.
Registration deadline is April 15. The $15 entry fee includes the specially-designed 1997 “Examiner Bay to Breakers” T-shirt.
To receive an entry form, send a self-addressed, stamped business-size envelope to 1997 Examiner Bay to Breakers, PO Box 429200, San Francisco, CA 94142. For more information, phone the Breakers Hotline at (415/408/510) 808-5000, ext. 2222.
Jeffersonian sites: Thomas Jefferson has been dead for more than 170 years, but the controversy about this enigmatic man, who wrote of the equality of all men and yet would not release his slaves, is more alive than ever.
Explore the places that most influenced our third president in a self-driving tour of nine historic sites throughout Virginia. Among the sites are the Barboursville Vineyards and Historic Ruins, where Jefferson studied grape cultivation, and the State Capitol, which Jefferson designed. A ticket that allows admission to all the sites is $57, a $25 savings over individual tickets. Information: 1-888-293-1776.
London Aquarium opens: Octopus, zebra morays, dog-faced puffer fish and blue gourami were among the species making their debut at the recent grand opening of the London Aquarium.
More than 30,000 specimens representing 350 species of fish, many never before displayed in England, grace the new $37 million aquarium housed in historic County Hall on the south bank of the Thames.
The marine animals can be viewed in two vast tanks, one devoted to the Atlantic Ocean and the other to the Pacific. The area also houses 40 other exhibits, including a touching pool. Admission is about $9.75. Information: British Tourist Authority at 1-800-462-2748 or the aquarium at 011-44-171-967-8000.
ROMing around Europe: If you are heading for Europe and have a computer with a CD-ROM drive, PlanetWare’s “Northern Europe” travel planner is for you. Not only is it easy to use, but it’s also loaded with helpful information about Great Britain, Ireland, Switzerland, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, France, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Norway, and Finland.
The disc includes hundreds of maps, money-saving ideas (there’s a great section on discount passes), more than 25,000 places to visit, handy currency exchange information and thousands of useful addresses.
“Northern Europe” is available for $39.95 by calling (800) 281-9823 or writing to PlanetWare, 10 Kensington Drive, Richmond Hill, Ontario L4E 3M9, or on the World Wide Web at www.planetware.ca.
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