Pumping Up Hialeah

Sergio Oliva does some mythmaking.

SAT 11/29

Musclemen are suddenly en vogue. California's governor is a veteran iron pumper, as is the head man in Minnesota. And take a look at major league baseball. Guys built like Bonds and Giambi are on every roster. Think Sammy needed to cork his bat to hit more jacks? But those muscles pale in comparison to what's on display this weekend. The South Florida Body Building Championships take place Saturday at the Milander Auditorium (4800 Palm Ave., Hialeah). This collection of ripped men and women will have you thinking twice about your own personal fitness.

The top dogs are in the open divisions. Men compete in lightweight (154 pounds and under), middleweight (154 to 176), light heavyweight (176 to 198), and heavyweight (198 and up) divisions. Women's divisions go light (108 and under), middle (108 to 117), and heavy (117 and up). There are also age-specific competitions, all the way up to 70 and older.

Aside from bodybuilding, there is a women's fitness competition involving two rounds of posing in bathing suits and a musical routine. The most feminine competition is the women's figure, which focuses completely on tone and beauty.

Upcoming Events

Sergio Oliva, nicknamed "The Myth" in his days of competition against Arnold, Lou Ferrigno, and Frank Zane, will be on hand for a seminar. Oliva created the now-famous Victory Pose and is the first bodybuilder to develop a bicep greater than the size of his head. But he gained his stardom in claiming three straight Mr. Olympia titles from 1967 to 1969. Oliva maintains that his seminars are markedly different from those put on by other former champs in that he emphasizes both the pros and cons of a career in bodybuilding, instead of making the world of mountains of muscles and gallons of oil sound like good times.

Prejudging starts at 9 a.m. Saturday, with the finale kicking off at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 for the morning session, and $20 for the evening. For more information call 305-823-8346. -- Russ Evans

Grand Opening

For the Sporting Crowd

FRI 11/28

The Palm Beach County Convention Center (1555 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd., West Palm Beach), West Palm Beach's brand spanking new $80 million convention center and visitors' bureau, holds its first major event this weekend as the Florida Sports and Leisure Expo sets up shop. More than 200 exhibitors have space at the event, which includes representatives from nearly every fitness fad to come down the pike. Walking seminars by fitness expert Barbara Ann. Fishing clinics provided by the Florida Bass Foundation. Karate demonstrations by the Karate Center of Lake Worth. Pilates seminars from All American Pilates. Plus tennis, chess, croquet, wrestling, table tennis, and badminton demonstrations. Anything the amateur sports enthusiast could want.

The leisure aspect of the Sports and Leisure Expo leaves one scratching one's head at times -- with exhibits on luxury SUVs, for example -- but we'll forgive them that in the face of the sheer number of truly viable sporting demonstrations and seminars from noon to 9 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. Tickets cost $7, or $3.50 for seniors. Call 954-935-0842. -- Dan Sweeney

What a Drag

Mountain Dew and drag racing -- a logical combination

SAT 11/29

When you think of Mountain Dew, you think of those commercials where bros are catchin' air and gettin' totally stoked, right? Well, now you can add drag racing to the list. The Mountain Dew Citrus Nationals race into Moroso Motorsports Park (17047 Beeline Hwy., Jupiter) this weekend. And in addition to the usual I-gotta-need-for-speed drag racing events, this competition features jet trucks, jet dragsters, jet funny cars, wheelstanders, alcohol dragsters, and alcohol funny cars. Not quite sure what an alcohol funny car is, but perhaps it's that car that gets so wasted it pees in its pants at the office Christmas party. Anyway, there will be jets, dragsters, fire, noise, exhaust in your face, and cars you definitely won't see in Nelly's new music video. What better way to avoid your family on Thanksgiving weekend? Check out the races Saturday and Sunday. Call 561-622-1400 for times or visit www.morosomotorsportspark.com. -- Audra Schroeder

Ponyin' Up on the Ponies

SAT 11/29

After the turkey and stuffing have had ample time to digest, and you've also had your fill of football, watcha think about takin' in a few horseraces over the weekend? For those fans of equestrian exploits in the crowd, Calder Race Course (21001 NW 27th Ave., North Miami) has a double dip of action in store for you Saturday. It's Double Stakes Day, with two top-notch collections of manes and tails competing for huge purses. Ladies are first, so the $100,000 Hollywood Wildcat Stakes for 2-year-old fillies leads off. Next is the $100,000 Mecke Stakes for all 2-year-olds. Both races are run over a mile-and-one-sixteenth track.

Admission is $2; gates open at 11 a.m., and post time for the first race is 12:25 p.m. If you're looking for a leg up when placing your bets, track analyst Bobby Neuman holds a free handicapping seminar every Saturday at 11:30 a.m. in the second floor Winner's Edge Room. For more information call 305-625-1311. -- Russ Evans

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