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Arias & E.R.A.'s

Cooperstown, N.Y.; July 24-25

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What's the difference between an opera queen and a baseball nut? Absolutely nothing! Each can discuss, in excruciating detail, the 1920 game or the 1967 performance when Cleveland Indian Bill Wambsganss or Italian tenor Carlo Bergonzi stunned the crowd in Cleveland or at the Met by executing the only unassisted triple play in World Series history or hitting and holding the impossible high-b-flat pianissimo in Aida. This weekend, a polymorphously perverse craving for both opera and baseball can be satisfied gleichzeitlich ("simultaneously," as the majordomo of Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos says) all in one place: Cooperstown, New York. On Saturday the 24th, at the world-class Glimmerglass Opera Festival on one side of Lake Otsego, watch the world premiere of Central Park, three one-act operas performed as a single work, with scores by American composers Robert Beaser, Deborah Drattell, and Michael Torke, set to librettos by playwrights Terrence McNally, Wendy Wasserstein, and A. R. Gurney. Three acts and you're out. Then on Sunday, cross to the other side, where Nolan Ryan and other big-league heroes will be inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame at 2:30 p.m. Between events, the best place to stay is the Otesaga, one of the great old Adirondack hotels, but book early (as in now). And before the weekend's final curtain, drive 40 minutes west to Leonardsville for dinner at the Horned Dorset, an exquisite French restaurant in a converted Victorian-era store.

DETAILS Glimmerglass Opera Festival (607-547-2255); the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum (888-425-5633; www.baseballhalloffame.org); the Otesaga Hotel (800-348-6222; rooms start at $295, including dinner and breakfast); the Horned Dorset Inn (315-855-7898; entrées, $22.95 to $28.95)


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