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The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences is encouraging folks to go "buggy" this weekend in Raleigh. The sixth annual "BuGFest!" transports swarms of insects and eight-legged creatures to the nation's largest one-day insect extravaganza. "Offbeat BuGFest! activities give the museum a way to encourage visitors to look at insects and other arthropods in new ways," says Bob Flook, museum coordinator of educational events, and arthropod aficionado. Included in these offbeat activities are the world's second largest cockroach (a hair-raising 4 inches long), "Coto," the canine bug-sniffer, the Roachingham 500 Roach Races (returning champ "Roachard Petty" will defend his title), and special presentations of creature-related exhibits and documentaries, including The Real Men in Black. In addition, for the brave at heart, the ever--ahem--tasty Café Insecta will serve up a dreadful assortment of bug-filled victuals, including Ant-I Pest-O Salad, Thai Sweet and Sour Arthropod Stew, Superworm Spice Cake and Hush Grubbies (traditional fare will also be served for creatures of habit). Insectivores and arthrovores wanted. Experience BuGFest! at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, Saturday, Aug. 3, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., 5 Edenton St., Bicentennial Plaza, Raleigh. All activities are free of charge and all ages are welcome. For more information, call 733-7450 ext. 503, toll-free (877) 4NATSCI, or visit www.naturalsciences.org. --olufunke moses

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