■ Cedar Point opens its gates for the 2014 season on Saturday. The park has a wide variety of new rides, shows, and attractions, including the Pipe Scream, which reaches heights of 43 feet and speeds topping 40 mph. New restaurants this year include a full-service Starbucks and Chickie's and Pete's, a popular restaurant known for its crabfries, signature Philly Cheese Steaks, and Lisa's Blonde Lobster Pie. In addition, the park's Luminosity: Ignite the Night show will feature new music, dancing, and displays of pyrotechnics. The show will be performed nightly, except Tuesdays, through Aug. 17.
■ Later this month, Lighthouse Point Cabins will unveil 52 new deluxe cabins, featuring accommodations for 10 people. Reservations are being accepted. Once the weather is even warmer, Cedar Point will open its new SlingShot ride, an open-air, two-person capsule that launches riders nearly 360 feet into the sky at speeds of up to 62 mph. SlingShot will be an extra charge amusement ride. Cedar Point admission is $49.99 for anyone between the ages of 3 and 61 who is 48 inches tall or taller in shoes and $34.99 for guests under 48 inches tall or age 62 and older. For a complete list of prices and hours of operation, go to cedarpoint.com. Visit discoverohiotogo.com for information on discounted tickets.
■ This week kicked off the "Biggest Week in American Birding," a 10-day birding festival and celebration of the peak of spring migration in the northwest Ohio region, also known as "The Warbler Capital of the World" for the its high concentration and point-blank views of the little birds. The birding festival, centered on Magee Marsh Wildlife Area and Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, will be jam-packed with workshops, warblers, guided field trips, half-day trips, Lake Erie island birding trips, keynote speakers, and workshops. The 2013 festival brought in more than 60,000 people from 46 states and at least 13 countries. For more information or to register for events, visit biggestweekinamericanbirding.com.
■ Military veterans will trade in their combat boots for dancing shoes, for Dancing With the Military Stars. Veterans will team up with pro dancers and local celebrities for the country-themed fund-raiser, sponsored by the Arms Forces, a nonprofit organization that assists military veterans who have a traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress, or other "invisible wounds." The third annual community event and benefit is Saturday at the Grand Aire Terminal at Toledo Express Airport and will also feature live entertainment, dancing, and socializing. Buffet and entertainment tickets are $75 and must be reserved by Friday. Entertainment only tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door. Advance tickets can be purchased online at dancingwiththemilitarystars.com. Information: 419-891-2111.
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