Although winter in the Ocean City Maryland area is considered the “off season”, there remain plenty of events and activities for residents and visitors alike. Below is a listing of a few 2013 seasonal offerings:
Celebrate Maryland’s finest beach with some of our Annual Events and Activities -
HORSE & CARRIAGE RIDES IN DOWNTOWN OC - 1/18 – 4/14/2013
Every Friday, Saturday & Sunday, 11:00 am – 5:00 p.m. (depending on weather and/or ridership). Begin at the Inlet Lot near Thrasher’s and enjoy riding on the Boardwalk and around the pier. $10 per person. Kids 3 years and under ride FREE For more information, call 410-289-1413 or 443-783-1409.
SUPERBOWL SUNDAY SCRAMBLE- February 3, 2013 – Eagle’s Landing Golf Course
Tailgate party with 18-hole Scramble Tournament. Scoring done in traditional football manner awarding points for touchdowns, field goals, extra points & penalizing for safeties. Game starts at 10 a.m., giving you time to watch the big game later in the day! Tailgate Party at 9 a.m.
Ticket price is $50 per player, which includes green fees, cart and tailgate party. Prizes will be awarded for winning teams. For more information and to sign up, call 410-213-7277.
SEASIDE BOAT SHOW– Feb 15th – 17th, Roland E. Powell Convention Center.
The 30th Annual Seaside Boat Show – The Boat Show that works for kids. The #1 indoor Boat Show on the Eastern Shore, featuring approx. 350 boats and over 140 exhibitors, including 50 boat dealers. Admission: Adults $9, Children $4. Friday 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Sunday 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. For more information, email email@example.com or visit http://www.ocboatshow.com
HOME, CONDO & OUTDOOR SHOW/ART & CRAFT FAIR 2013 – March 8 – 10, 2013, Roland E. Powell Convention Center.
Many ideas on decorating, remodeling, renovating, or building your own home; all under one roof! This is an opportunity to see what’s new, compare products, and find bargains.
Artists and crafters will compliment the Home & Garden show by showcasing their most creative, unique craft & gift items, decor & accessories. Practical, as well as fun, items for your home & lifestyle. Friday 12-6 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Admission. For more information, visit www.oceanpromotions.info or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ST. PATRICK’S DAY PARADE 2013 – March 16, 2013. Coastal Highway from 59th St. south to 45th St.
A much anticipated Ocean City event! Everyone loves to be Irish at Ocean City’s famous parade. Marching units, floats, and local celebrities. Parade begins at noon and travels Coastal Hwy. from 59th Street south to 45th. At the 45th Street shopping area, a fun festival with food, drink and merriment begins at 11 a.m. For more information visit http://www.delmarvairish.com
EASTER ART & CRAFT FAIR 2013 – March 29 – 30th, 2013. Roland E. Powell Convention Center.
Exhibitors displaying unique handcrafted items including wearable art, jewelry, lawn & garden decor, toys, florals, fine art, caricatures & more. www.oceanpromotions.info
Friday and Saturday: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Admission: Adults $4, Seniors & Students $3, 3 years and under and Military FREE. Admission includes Easter Kids Fun Fair.
Keep watching…there is much more to come throughout the year in Ocean City Maryland!
Here on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, New Year’s Eve is celebrated in ways unique to our geographical region.
In Ocean City our holiday begins in late November with the creation of the annual, month long winter wonderland called Winterfest of Lights. Several acres of land beside our coastal bays are decorated with thousand of lights depicting anything Christmas. A miniature passenger train, upon which delighted children and equally delighted adults are transported through this forest of fondly, remembered images. In addition, at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve there is a huge fireworks display, which considering the location, is reflected over the calm waters. Carrying the celebration into the next day, many people choose to gather (and participate) in the annual Penguin Swim. The curious are then entertained as hundreds of intrepid, fun-loving people venture into the icy, north Atlantic – to say they did? Sponsored by a local hospital – Atlantic General, donations are accepted!
Next on our celebrating New Year’s Eve trek, though only three years old, is the Ball Drop in Berlin, MD – a short distance inland from Ocean City. Berlin is a small, but thriving historic town filled with little shops and trendy eateries. Crowds gather and swarm the Main Street in the downtown area in front of the well known, Atlantic Hotel awaiting that stroke of the clock – turning the calendar for another year. It’s a replica mini-Times Square evening that includes live musical performances. Throughout the town, area restaurants ‘fancy-up’, offering elegant, multi-course meals. This family fun event offers a taste of the big city life without the distant travel!
Finally, and most locally unique in celebrating the magic hour is the Muskrat Drop in Princess Anne – located in nearby Somerset County. Since it’s becoming more and more ‘proper’ to drop something local, this small town has chosen the muskrat! Located on the western edge of the Delmarva Peninsula, Princess Anne is surrounded by tidal marshland inhabited by this mammal. This event, which began in 2011, has entered its second year – when a stuffed muskrat named Marshall P. Muskrat is lowered from the top of a fire truck ladder as part of the town’s celebration.
Since time travel has not yet been perfected, you get to choose only one location in which to celebrate the New Year…though to be certain, you won’t be disappointed anywhere on the Eastern Shore!
Viewing a sunrise over the endless Atlantic Ocean skyline reveals the promise of another day in Ocean City MD! Quietly watching the black turn to shades of gray through the first visual definition of a seemingly endless horizon of sky over water is exhilarating. If you’re fortunate enough to be here during winter – with the progressive lengthening of the daylight hours, it’s easy to imagine the promise of the seasons to follow.
We tear off the calendar page – it’s February 2012! With the hmmm of January passed and the ‘threat’ of March looming (March can be a fearsome month weather-wise) we realize, though still cold, that summertime is just a few months away. A quick glance at the list of noteworthy annual events – especially the 29th Annual Seaside Boat Show coming in two short weeks!
Along Coastal Highway one sees a multitude of contractors’ panel vans and pick-up trucks filled with tools and supplies scurrying to locations throughout our island resort. Every hotelier and motel owner, every shopkeeper and restaurateur throughout OC is busy taking stock; planning upgrades to properties, inventories and menus. A mild winter (so far) has kept properties safe from any real weather damage; repairs are minimal and maintenance is ongoing.
Current OC island condo owners are beginning to visit to survey their properties, to plan for summertime occupancy. Many prospective owners are visiting on weekends too – hoping to find that ‘just right’, 2nd (vacation) home.
Whether for the romance of a mid-winter, getaway weekend or to survey a property, while here, many will wander over to the Boardwalk…bundling up for a nostalgic walk by the seaside beneath a steadily warming sun. Evenings will find most seeking a long anticipated reunion with their favorite restaurant for a warming dish…most all of the ‘best’ beach eateries are open all year round – though some are only open weekends until the season begins.
A mid-winter visit to Ocean City MD can be restorative in many ways… you’re invited!
If you find yourself visiting Ocean City MD during the month of December you’re already aware we take our celebration of Christmas and Hanukah in a very big way – beginning with the wondrous ‘Winterfest of Lights’…and, the ‘can’t miss ‘ lovely streets and buildings arrayed in traditional holiday décor. But, did you know that our Town extends the celebration – adding several more exciting activities to celebrate the New Year?
New Year’s Day will find the crowds gathering on the beach in front of the Princess Royale Hotel (91st Street) to view or participate in the 18th Annual Penguin Swim! Everyone looks forward to this annual dip into the chilly Atlantic to benefit our local Atlantic Hospital. If you’re game – registration beings at 11:30 with the ‘swim’ at 1pm. Great fun for all…
After viewing the swim it’s only a quick drive down Coastal Highway to the Ocean City Town Hall located at 301 Baltimore Avenue to participate in another New Year’s Day tradition. The Mayor and City Council invite everyone to visit the beautifully decorated City Hall. There are themed exhibits and displays. This year’s focus is on the Art League of Ocean City. While there you may also view the Ocean City history panels displayed throughout the second floor – our Town during days gone by. There is live entertainment and light refreshments are available! Times – 1-3pm.
Finally, with luck, you can scoot down to the well-known, barrier island below Ocean City – Assateague, to work off the City Hall ‘refreshment’ visit. For the past 31 years folk have been gathering each January 1st to walk the beach. If you miss the guided walk beginning at the Assateague State Park Visitor Center – you can still take part and enjoy a cup of cocoa at the end of the day. This year the theme for the 2012 (yes, it’s here) will be ‘An Island and Time of Change.‘
That’s it – three exciting activities from which choose: any or all – your choice for a fun-filled day in which to begin your new year in Ocean City Maryland.
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Note: The following article was recently published in Bloomberg’s Businessweek. Definitely worth noting!!!
Ocean City, Md., came in at No. 1 in a nationwide ranking of ZIP codes with the best nightlife and the most affordable housing.
By Venessa Wong of Bloomberg Businessweek
The most fun for homebuyers on a budget? Look to Maryland
Ocean City, Md., a resort town about 70 miles south of Dover, Del., has long drawn large crowds with its beach, bay and hundreds of dining and nightlife offerings. A popular destination for young singles and families, the town of 10,246 people swells to about 250,000 during the summer, according to city estimates. Surprisingly, living in the middle of all this action can be affordable. Homes in the Ocean City area have a median price of $243,600, while the state median is $232,500, according to Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate and real-estate data provider Onboard Informatics.
Ocean City, also known as OCMD to habitues, emerged as the country’s most affordable and fun city in a ranking by Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate’s Lifestyle Search. “There are two or three ultracool cities that everyone wants to live in,” says Sherry Chris, chief executive of BHG Real Estate. “The problem is it’s very expensive to live in those cities, so that eliminates them as a possibility for many people.” Because lifestyle and community are more important for “echo boomers,” or 18- to 34-year-olds, than for older buyers, Chris says, identifying affordable places with active downtown areas and a cool atmosphere is key to attracting the current generation of home-buyers.
After Ocean City, the next most affordable and fun cities were the Ala Moana-Kakaako section of Honolulu; Tempe, Ariz.; Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Greenville, S.C.
Exciting and fun events and activities abound; more to see and do, within the Ocean City MD area throughout the year (a whole lot more than sandy beaches and Boardwalk)! Our surrounding small towns and villages – despite the calendar, continue to offer unique opportunities for experience and adventure.
This past weekend we decided to partake of another of these opportunities. The early advertising from the Snow Hill Chamber of Commerce said, “Oyster Fest”. Most anything touting these tasty, local shellfish can grab out attention. The town of Snow Hill is in itself unique, with lovely historic homes and churches. Settled over 300 years ago along the banks of the still vibrant, Pocomoke River, this town continues to serve as the County Seat of Worcester, MD.
Back to the Fest…though the weather was slightly overcast; my spirits were not. Arriving early at the Old Snow Hill Firehouse located on Greene Street, we noted several already occupied outdoors tables. And, upon entering and presenting our tickets…we immediately faced a crowd including several lines winding around the large serving area. So much for ‘early’! We quickly joined the longest line and found, far away at the other end, were the stars of the show – oysters served many ways; steamed, raw and single fried. Other offerings here included Oysters Malibu – pulled pork and slaw for the landlubber. While waiting, because we were two, I was able to sneak off to another serving station and procure two bowls of really luscious oyster stew prepared by the good folks of the Blue Dog Café. Flavorful and filled with nice sized oysters, this ‘sample’ helped to tide us over until it was our turn. Also, during our wait, we were enjoyed some live music being performed in one corner. Soon, after finding table space, we did full justice to these aforementioned items; now it was time to search for more! Heading over to another small serving area we passed what looked to be an old-fashioned shucking table manned by the owners of Bishop’s Stock, a local gallery of fine art, crafts and wine. However instead of oysters on ice…this was filled with an assortment of wines and a choice of interesting hard ciders. Ah yes, I remembered now that the wines were there to be sampled and ‘paired’ with several unique oyster presentations. No matter, I was soon off to the table sponsored by The Palette…(in my opinion, one of the finest eateries in our region) to see what Chef Phil Cropper had cooked up for the Fest. Not to be disappointed, this station served up huge and beautiful, freshly prepared, Oysters Rockefeller and Oysters Casino. Hands full again, I returned to our table – these delights too were quickly dispatched! With a final trip to the Blue Dog dessert bar to snag a couple of thick, moist, chewy Brownies we decided it was fully time to waddle back to our car completely satisfied and delighted to be able to participate in what was advertised to be the ‘first annual’ Snow Hill Chamber Oyster Fest.
If these happy attendees have anything to say – this fine, well-planned and organized fun event won’t be the last. I plan to mark my calendar now for next February…will you?
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Best Wishes and Merry Christmas to All from Lynn Bartlett – An ABR Realtor®!
Occasionally we find ourselves in other places, under unusual circumstances on those more traditionally thought of, ‘family and home’ holidays – particularly Christmas. This year, upon finding ourselves in those same ‘different circumstances’, we decided to do some research to answer those questions, – “What’s open on Christmas – where can we eat?” The results amazed, seems like, despite the cold weather, warm welcomes are everywhere in Ocean City. Won’t YOU share our tables…?
(Restaurants are listed alphabetically – with contact information. Many suggest reservations – so get busy!)
32 Palm (Hilton) – 32nd & Coastal, 410.289.2525, http://ocmdrestaurants.com
BJ’s on the Water – 75th St. & Coastal Hwy, 410.524.7575, http://bjsonthewater.com
Brew River – 502 West Main St., Salisbury MD, 410.677.6757, http://brewriver.com
Captain’s Table – 15th & Coastal Hwy, 410.289.7191, http://captainstableoc.com
Clarion (Fontainebleau) – 101 Coastal Hwy, 410.524.3535, http://clarionoc.com
Dunes Manor – 28th & Oceanfront, 410.289.1100 x5232, http://dunesmanor.com
Harpoon Hanna’s – Fenwick Island DE, 302.539.3095, http://harpoonhannasrestaurant.com
House of Welsh – Fenwick Island DE, 302.541.0728, http://houseofwelsh.org
Reflections (Holiday Inn) – 66th St. & Coastal, 410.524.5252, http://ocmdhotels.com/reflections
Sakura – Ocean Gateway (West OC), 410.213.7711, http://sakurasteakhouse.com
Note: Some restaurants may have been inadvertently omitted …please check with your favorite eatery for open hours.
Around this time, Ocean City Maryland folks trade their surfboards for sleighs and tanning lotion for chap Stick! Well, perhaps not to that extent. This year beginning on November 18th, our island transforms itself into a truly magical place during the annual Winterfest of Lights. And, this year we are proud to announce: Winterfest of Lights has been named a prestigious Top 100 Event for 2010 and 2011 by American Bus Association.
It all begins at Northside Park located on 127th Street where you may board the Winterfest Express tram and sing Christmas carols while gliding past lighted displays depicting favorite fairy tales including the Twelve Days of Christmas. A few steps away, within a comfortably heated tent, is the patio Café, (remember that lip balm?) where steaming hot cocoa may be enjoyed while perusing the fun stuff available for purchase at the Yukon Cornelius’ Gift Shop. Live entertainment is scheduled on selected nights. Heading south along Coastal Highway there is the fabulous Tunnel of Lights at the Inlet Lot where the white sandy beach is filled with lighted displays boasting a nautical theme. And, while here at the beach don’t forget to visit the Avenue of Trees located on Baltimore Avenue from 15th – 32nd Street. Finally, while you won’t really need a sleigh to enjoy the island at Christmas time you will want to travel the island end to end to view all of the lovely seasonal displays offered by our business community…over one million lights really do sparkle throughout the town turning Ocean City MD into a very magical place during the holiday season! Beginning on November 18th and lasting through January 1st, 2011. House are: Sunday ~ Thursday 5:30 p.m. ~ 9:30 p.m., Friday & Saturday 5:30 p.m. ~ 10:30 p.m. For more information including a video tour visit – http://ococean.com/events
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During the holidays people visit the Ocean City Maryland area for a variety of reasons; to rest and relax – get away, to visit family and friends, and to view and participate in the area’s many traditional and non-traditional, seasonal activities.
There is no doubt that our area offers a wide range of choices for all visitors. First, if your choice is to get away – the rest and relax part is easy. Early winter brings a huge sense of natural quiet to the area. Bundled up, going for a stroll beside the surf or on our famed Boardwalk, watching the sea birds aloft and breathing the brisk sea air is nature’s own best tranquilizer. To our south, Assateague Island becomes a winter wonderland; bare branches and the occasional island pony or deer against the background of long stretches of pristine beach often provides natures most reflective scenery. Prolonging this sense of relaxation means perhaps finding oneself of an evening in one of the area’s many fine restaurants enjoying choice refreshments.
For our visitors who instead choose to partake of more vibrant area activities – these too are abundant. Area shopping is unique – and although we have the nearby chains we also offer plenty of those hard to find, one of a kind shops and galleries, especially in our sister town, Berlin Maryland. Outlet shopping may be found at the nearby White Marlin Mall/Outlet on Rt. 50. Horse and Carriage rides are also offered in Downtown Historic Berlin on weekends through Christmas. Area museums offer additional ‘open’ hours – showcasing our region’s unique seaside history. Traditional choral presentations abound in area churches. Here on the island of Ocean City a drive along Coastal Highway showcases colorful and exciting displays of lights.
New Year’s Day presents the more ‘non-traditional’ in the form of the annual “Penguin Swim”. One may view a huge mass of shivering bodies topped with smiling faces brave a quick dip in the cold Atlantic – to benefit our local hospital – Atlantic General!
Yes, there are truly many unique ways to enjoy the Holidays Ocean City style 2009!
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There’s absolutely nothing disappointing about this particular annual event; each November this Ocean City Maryland icon restaurant, Harpoon Hanna’s, offers a special, month long special – a “Lobster Blowout”. Two evenings each week (Wednesday and Thursday) fresh, whole Maine lobsters are offered at half price! The other evening we decided to check out this well-advertised deal. First off, even at the early hour of 5 pm the large parking lot was full. However, upon entering, we discovered that much of that was due to the normal “Happy Hour” crowd; we were seated in the dining area immediately and very comfortably. Menus were provided although we already knew what this evening was all about. All that I can say is “WOW”! The ‘bugs’ served were perfectly prepared…steamed just right, and, with the addition of a couple of tiny slits in the claw we were able to dismember this tempting crustacean with ease and less mess (well almost – they do have the ubiquitous lobster bib available in case of a mishap)! And, melted butter does still drip from time to time! A choice of two sides is offered: Baked Potato, Cole Slaw, Mac & Cheese, Applesauce (the good kind) or Vegetable of the Day. After gobbling all these goodies we should have quit but the limited yet attractive selections on dessert menu proved too tempting; out came a slice of Key Lime pie to share. It was tasty but small; really all that we needed! Everything was good – really good! Attentive without being intrusive, our server, Chris was a real pro. Also, it appeared that by the time we left, many others were enjoying this special evening! This offering, as mentioned earlier is available Wednesdays and Thursdays throughout the month – except Thanksgiving Day, when another, more traditional special is offered!
Visit http://harpoonhannasrestaurant.com for information on all that this grand eatery has to offer!
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