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Hit Hermann

In time for summer, the park's had a facelift.

June 13 — 2009 Best of Buffalo Bayou Pontoon Boat Tours

Sabine Street Bridge North Boat Landing, 713-752-0314, www.buffalobayou.org

These 30-minute boat rides are a great way to spend the afternoon with your family. Escape from the city and enjoy the cool breeze as you glide along the bayou's waters. Look for graceful herons, jumping fish and even the occasional alligator sunning on the bayou's banks. After your cruise, enjoy a picnic lunch on the new Sabine-to-Bagby Promenade grounds. There are no reservations, and each trip has a capacity of 20 people. The boat picks passengers up at the Sabine Street Bridge North Boat Landing. The trips will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The price is $7 for adult passage and $5 for children's passage, cash only. No children under four will be admitted.

Abby Downing-Beaver

June 17-21 — 2009 Houston Summer Boat Show, Reliant Park

Reliant Center, One Reliant Park, 713-526-6361, www.btamh.com

The latest brands in boats, yachts, jet skis and other marine-themed vehicles will be showcased in all five halls of Reliant Center. The five-day show, which is expected to attract more than 30,000 boating enthusiasts, will present more than 200 exhibits with boats of all makes and models for fishing, skiing/wakeboarding and pleasure cruising. That's in addition to exhibits filled with accessories, fishing gear, clothing, art and more. And as always, most of the exhibiting dealers will offer special Summer Show discounts. Show hours for the 2009 Houston Summer Boat Show are Wednesday through Friday, June 17 to 19, from 1 to 9 p.m.; Saturday, June 20, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday, June 21, from noon to 6 p.m. Admission to the 2009 Houston Summer Boat Show is $8 for adults and $4 for children under 12. Tickets can be purchased at the Reliant Center ticket office.

June 18-21 and 25-28, July 1-5 — The Curt Miller Magic & Comedy Show

Moody Gardens Convention Center, 7 Hope Blvd., Galveston, 409-683-4186, www.moodytickets.com

Magic buffs won't want to miss The Curt Miller Magic & Comedy Show. Curt's Las Vegas-style show dazzles the audience with a mixture of large-scale illusions and comedic flair. A surprising blend of incredible magic and clean comedy, this show will leave you amazed and laughing out loud as Curt makes participants disappear, levitate and break up into pieces. Matinee shows at 1 p.m.; evening shows at 7 p.m.

June 26-27 — DockDogs

Jones Lawn at Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney, 713-400-7336, www.discoverygreen.com

Presented for the second time in Houston, this Big Air Dogs competition is a dynamic canine sport measuring leaps and bounds. Televised on the Outdoor Channel, DockDogs competition consists of dogs jumping into water from a designated dock, with the largest or highest leap earning that canine a victory. Dogs and owners travel to Houston to compete, and the competition will be open to local dogs, too.

June 26-28 — TRISTAR Collectors Show

George R. Brown Convention Center — Hall A, 1001 Avenida de las Americas, 800-427-4697, www.tristarproductions.com/shows/HOU608/index.htm.

Meet some of your favorite hometown athletes such as Lance Berkman, Cal Ripken Jr., Mario Williams and Eddie Murray, then try to get them to sign an embarrassing body part. $10 per day for adults; $8 per day for ages 6 to 12; free for ages five and under.

June 27 and July 1-5 — Houston CaribFest

713-689-0689, www.houstoncaribfest.com/home.htm

Numerous venues and Caribbean-themed parties and events combine to spread a little island joy and happiness all over Houston.

July 4 — Chevy's Freedom Over Texas. Houston's Official July 4th Celebration

Eleanor Tinsley Park, 713-247-3500, www.houstontx.gov/july4

This festival is one of the largest of its kind in the country and is sure to attract thousands of visitors and fans. As Houston's "official" Fourth of July celebration, it will start at 4 p.m. and end at 10 p.m.

July 4 — Kemah Boardwalk Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular

www.kemahboardwalk.com

Enjoy the usual amenities and dining of Kemah Boardwalk, and then at 9:30 p.m. feast your eyes on a spectacular fireworks display launched from a giant barge in Galveston Bay.

July 9 — Music of Star Trek & More Sci-Fi

Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana, 713-224-7575, www.houstonsymphony.org

Play the first few notes of the original Star Trek theme and fans immediately envision the starship USS Enterprise, zooming across space. So evocative was the music for Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: Enterprise that its composers were recognized with Emmys. In this concert, Associate Conductor Robert Franz and the Houston Symphony take the audience from that original television theme through music of the many films and series that have followed. Also featured will be music from other sci-fi favorites, including 2001: A Space Odyssey and Battlestar Galactica. Attendees dressed as their favorite characters can participate in the symphony's costume contest. The fun starts at 7:30 p.m.

July 12 — Houston Symphony / Houston Chronicle Dollar Concert

Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana, 713-224-7575, www.houstonsymphony.org

Just what the title says: You get all the magnificence of the Houston Symphony for 100 pennies. It starts at7:30 p.m.

July 15-26 — Ringling Bros. and Barnum & ­Bailey Circus

Reliant Stadium, One Reliant Park, 713-629-3700, www.ringling.com

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