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Wacky vehicles coming to Baltimore

Wacky vehicles, well-engineered machines and everything in between will race through Baltimore City May 7 during the Kinetic Sculpture Race.

These human-powered works of art can be 50 feet long or compact crafts, and piloted by one brave soul or a whole team. Vehicles are constructed from used bicycles, surreys, floats, gears, assorted parts and decorations. The event is organized by the American Visionary Art Museum, the official national museum for self-taught, intuitive artistry.

The competition is a 15-mile romp along the streets, into the harbor and through mud and sand. The all-day race begins and ends at the museum, 800 Key Highway, Baltimore, next to Federal Hill Park in the Inner Harbor.

Competition kicks off at 10 a.m. Arrive early for opening ceremonies and the Blessing of De Feet. Festivities are free for spectators. This year’s theme is Myths and Monsters for racers, volunteers and spectators, who are encouraged to come in costume.

The top race prize is the Grand Mediocre East Coast Champion Award. Also coveted is the Next to the Last Award for the penultimate finisher. Additional trophies include awards for Art, Engineering, Best Bribes and more.

Great spots for catching the action include the first checkpoint atop Federal Hill; the water entry at the boat ramp at Canton Waterfront Park; and the uphill mud pit and the sand pit, both in Patterson Park, near Canton.

Visit the American Visionary Art Museum online at