San Diego Mardi Gras
It's telling that no still or video cameras are allowed at the San Diego Fat Tuesday frenzy. The crowd gets wild with live music on 10 stages, go-go dancing and street performers, beads and boas, plus two Incredible Masquerade Parades. The parades and their flamboyant floats travel down six blocks of 5th Avenue at 7:30 and 10 p.m.
When, where: 6 p.m. to midnight Feb. 5 in the Gaslamp Quarter, from Broadway to Harbor Drive between 4th and 6th avenues with three gate entrances: 5th Avenue and Broadway, 4th Avenue and Market Street, and 6th Avenue and K Street.
Cost: $15 in advance, $20 at the gate.
For "Peanuts" fans and other cartoon lovers, there's a new exhibition at the Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa. "The Language of Lines: How Cartoonists Communicate" looks at the "visual shorthand" of comics, how emotions and ideas are conveyed. In conjunction, "Beyond Words" presents more than 75 dialogue-free "Peanuts" strips, in which Schulz's pictures tell the whole story.
When, where: "Beyond Words" now through May 12; "Language of Lines" Saturday to Aug. 11 at the museum, 2301 Hardies Lane.
Cost: $8, $5 children 4 to 18.
Info: (707) 579-4452, www.schulzmuseum.org.
Vancouver's Granville Island shakes the winter blahs with this creative outlet. Performers who combine dance and flames, dancers who perform suspended beneath a bridge, comedy improv and different flavors of live jazz are among numerous highlights. Also, kids have the chance to create, shoot, edit and screen a short video poem; adults can take part in a team writing competition.
When, where: Feb. 21 to 24 at various locations on Granville Island.
Cost: Many activities, exhibits and performances free; top ticket $40.
Info: (604) 666-5784, www.winterruption.com.
Winter Park Bach Festival
The celebration of classical music in this town near Orlando includes two performances by pianist Leon Fleisher, who was among December's Kennedy Center honorees. Also, Harvard professor and leading Bach scholar Christoph Wolff will give a free lecture. The event features four lectures and seven full performances, plus a community sing and other activities.
When, where: Feb. 15 to March 9; all programs are on the Rollins College campus at 1000 Holt Ave.
Cost: Several free events; tickets for others $20 to $55.
Info: (407) 646-2182, www.bachfestivalflorida.org.
Only at a Texas floral show would you find topiary in the shape of a covered wagon and life-size horses and longhorn cattle. Hundreds of thousands of spring-blooming flowers will be on display -- tulips, daffodils, violas, poppies, Dutch irises, azaleas and more. Armadillo races, trick ropers and hoedowns are among the entertainment on weekends.
When, where: March 8 to April 13, Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Road.
Cost: $8, $5 children ages 3 to 12.
Info: (214) 515-6500, www.dallasarboretum.org.