Come out and enjoy the 2021 Berlin Restaurant Week!
Axe Throwing in Ocean City!
Continue reading “Axe Throwing in Lewes!”
Images from Trimper’s Rides
While Labor Day weekend marks the unofficial end of the summer season, summertime is a state of mind in Ocean City. From Oct. 2–4, Trimper’s Rides will host its inaugural SunFun OC. The event, beginning at noon each day, will feature food, music, arts and crafts vendors and games and rides for $2.
Trimper’s legendary amusement park, located near the Ocean City Inlet, will boast arts, crafts and food vendors in the park, as well as a sidewalk sale in the Inlet Village featuring some of your favorite Ocean City retailers. There will also be live music, a DJ and karaoke, day and night, all weekend long.
Experience all of your favorite rides and games from Trimper’s for just $2 all day during SunFun OC. Marty’s Playland will also have half-off video games during the SunFun weekend. Nana’s Hot Chicken will be feeding hungry guests at the center of the outdoor rides, offering $2 deals on hot dogs, chicken on a stick, homemade cookies, cake pops and iced tea.
SunFun OC, a family-friendly event, will adhere to COVID restrictions and safety protocols.
For more information, visit SunFunOC.com
By Arielle Patterson
Ocean City is a laid back coastal community with something to offer all ages and interests. The same goes for local restaurants. From beach bars with a view of the ocean and family-friendly eateries to fine dining dishes made with locally sourced ingredients, Ocean City’s culinary scene is sure to be a memorable part of your visit.
Located on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Ocean City diners have the luxury of indulging in some of the freshest seafood offerings around. Much of the seafood on local menus comes straight from the Atlantic Ocean. Area chefs take advantage of the region’s bounty, including sea bass, bluefish, croaker, flounder, Atlantic and Spanish mackerel, tuna and more. When dining out, be sure to look for blackboard specials or ask your server about the “fresh catch of the day.” You’re sure to enjoy a meal that’s straight off the dock and caught by local watermen.
Of course, a trip to Maryland is not complete without some of the Chesapeake Bay’s famous blue crabs. This sweet, succulent crab meat can be served in a variety of dishes at Ocean City restaurants. Blue crab is steadily available April through December, with soft-shell crab season ending in October. Enjoy crab meat for breakfast in an omelet or atop eggs benedict. Try rich dishes like creamy crab dip and cream of crab soup or enjoy an authentic Maryland broiled crab cake. The best way to enjoy crabs on a hot summer’s day can be done from the comfort of your hotel or rental home. Hard-shell crabs are properly served steamed, seasoned with Old Bay and served on newspaper with mallets for cracking them open.
It’s not just seafood that local restaurants are sourcing locally. Many restaurants also utilize fresh produce, eggs, dairy, meat and more from nearby farms. Chefs will cater their menus to the seasonal harvest from area farms, providing you a flavorful meal with a true taste of the region. Your taste buds will celebrate as you savor each bite of a delicious dish creatively cultivated by a local chef at one of Ocean City’s restaurants.
Be sure to finish every meal in Ocean City with dessert. Ocean City has been known for crafting old-fashioned sweets for decades. Try homemade candies, rich fudge, saltwater taffy, flavored popcorn and a cone of ice cream that will cool you down after a long day in the sun.
Ocean City’s Local Libations
No matter what type of cuisine you’re enjoying, be sure to wash your food down with one of Ocean City’s local libations.
Ocean City’s craft beer scene has been booming, as local brews take over the taps at bars and restaurants. A trip to Ocean City is not complete without getting a pint of one of the local microbrews. These come from small-batch breweries, that are best known for having specialty or seasonal flavors. Many of Ocean City’s beers are made with non-traditional flavors and local ingredients from farms, including fruit, honey and even nuts. While the techniques are top-of-the-line, these beers are served in a casual environment to fully embrace the laid-back lifestyle of Ocean City.
Just a quick drive from the boardwalk are several wine bars that offer a variety to sample and purchase. Spend the day at a winery, on acres of exquisite vineyards, where the grapes are grown to produce award-winning wines. You can also find bottled wine at a local liquor store or wine cellar. Local wine bars offer a mellow atmosphere to swirl and sip your vino.
If you’re looking for something that packs more of a punch, look no further than Ocean City’s distilled spirits. Fruit flavored vodkas complement the local favorite Orange Crush. Mix it up and try a Ruby Red Crush made with Ruby Red Grapefruit vodka from a local distiller.
So, raise a glass, growler or pint of your new homegrown libation, and toast to Ocean City’s local flavor.
Trimper’s Rides may be a Maryland landmark, but this season, the oldest continuously family-owned and operated amusement park in the country has undergone a transformation. In addition to 10 new and renovated rides, management is introducing fresh food and beverage outlets, a “Thrill Pass” swipe card, “Pay One Price” wristbands (for day and night) and free Wi-Fi. They’re also implementing safety measures to keep their guests and staff safe as the country continues to battle the coronavirus.
In the off season, the Trimper’s team scoured the country for rides. In addition to thrillers like the Shot Drop Tower (that propels riders down a 100-foot vertical drop), they found renovated classic rides like the Tilt a Whirl and Round Up that haven’t been seen at the park since the ‘80s.
Click here for a Trimper’s Rides coupon.
“It’s not all about new and fancy,” says Antoinette Bruno, a member of the original Trimper’s family and the park’s new CEO. “We wanted to bring back historical rides and revitalize the park back to its former glory.”
For the vintage rides located in the Carousel House, the Trimper’s team — consisting of direct descendants leading back to founder Daniel Trimper, along with some of its longtime staff and new management members — are consulting their archives and those of the Maryland and Worcester historical societies to ensure the renovation is accurate.
“In the weeks before opening, we’ve had a crew of 30 workers working with toothbrushes, Q-tips, cotton balls and soft cloths to lovingly—I mean lovingly—cleaning the historical rides that families have enjoyed season after season,” says General Manager Mike O’Neil, a 25-year veteran of the amusement park industry. “We’re revering the old, all while bringing in the new.”
This season, that means new uniforms, games, concessions, rides and safety protocols.
In addition to the “Thrill Pass” swipe card that will help limit cash transactions, new safety measures include additional hand washing and sanitizing stations, along with free disposable masks and gloves for every guest. Rides will be sanitized between every use, and the whole park will get scrubbed down each evening. Trimper’s employees will be temperature checked each day and wear masks and gloves at all times.
“We’re working with local officials and Governor Larry Hogan to make sure Trimper’s is a safe place for families to enjoy a day of sunshine and boardwalk magic,” says Bruno. “Trimper’s Rides has been part of the boardwalk and the Ocean City community since 1893. We’ve brought a lot of joy to people in challenging times. This summer will be no different.”
Local Expert Shares What She Loves about Ocean City
By Arielle Patterson
There are so many reasons to love Ocean City. From the bustling boardwalk overlooking the ocean and the bayside attractions to the charming towns nearby, Maryland’s coastal city has so much to offer both first-time and long-time vacationers. I asked a local expert what they love about Ocean City. Here’s what she had to say.
What do you love most about Ocean City?
Susan Jones, Executive Director of the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association: “Our community is unlike any other. Whenever there is a need, it seems as though, through connections, there will be a way to fulfill the need. Whether it is to lend a listening ear, extend a helping hand or to raise funds, needs are always met. Having grown up here, I have seen our city grow from humble beginnings to thriving corporations employing many locals. Even though there are big hospitality businesses, the intimate feeling of knowing your neighbor still exists.”
How would you describe life in Ocean City?
Susan Jones: “We are truly a unique destination. There are so many diverse businesses, so we are able to offer a variety of accommodations, dining and attractions to fit budgets of all sizes. Hospitality is our heritage, so we roll out the welcome mat all year long. While summer is always the best time to visit, as everything is up and running, the shoulder seasons offer a slower pace. Winter in OC is peaceful and quiet; there’s nothing better than bundling up and walking on an empty boardwalk.”
What is your favorite thing to do with your family?
Susan Jones: “Being on the water is our happy place. We are fortunate to be boat owners and love to cruise around the back bays. Whether we are just riding and listening to music, crabbing or fishing, just being on the water makes everyone relax. I love to pack a picnic basket and just anchor up and take in all the sights and sounds.”
What is your favorite “hidden gem” in Ocean City?
Susan Jones: “This is a tough question as there are many! The OC Lifesaving Station is a great way to learn about OC and there are so many unique artifacts and sands from all over the world. I first visited when I took a group of hospitality students to learn some of the history. I also love the Assateague Visitors Center; their touch tanks and movie on the wild ponies really showcases all that charms of Assateague.”
What’s your favorite beach or outdoor attraction to go to and why?
Susan Jones: “Honestly, I love to hop on the giant Ferris wheel on the pier! Being on the top provides an amazing view of Ocean City and Assateague. It’s a great place to take pics! Again, anything on the water is my happy spot, so jumping in a kayak and paddling around is quite peaceful. Ayres Creek Adventures offers eco-tours in calm waters with limited boating and they have an amazing moon paddle.”
Protecting the Life and Property of Ocean City
By Arielle Patterson
It’s summertime in Ocean City, which means more visitors to Maryland’s coastline ready to enjoy some fun in the sun. As you walk the boardwalk, lounge on the beach, experience local attractions and unwind in your hotel or rental home, the Ocean City Fire Department wants you to have a safe visit while you’re here.
The Ocean City Fire Department (OCFD) is an all-hazards response department. “We handle any type of emergency,” says Ryan Whittington, firefighter, medic and bomb tech for the OCFD. “From a medical emergency to any type of incident on our roadways, at a hotel and also on our waterways.”
OCFD is made up of volunteer and career personnel. There are over 200 members in the Volunteer Division and over 100 in the Career Division. OCFD covers the 10-and-a-half mile stretch of beach area and West Ocean City, while also providing aid to Worcester County and Sussex County, Delaware. The department receives about 6,000 calls each year, with many during the busy summer season.
When people think of any fire department, a group of first responders putting out fires first comes to mind. In addition to fire and rescue protection, the OCFD also oversees medical care, fire prevention, fire safety education and a marine unit that performs water rescues.
When you visit Ocean City you may have a chance to interact with members of the department, in emergency and non-emergency matters. According to Whittington, one of the most common non-emergencies the department responds to is people getting locked out on their balconies. The department urges visitors staying in a hotel or rental property with a balcony understand the locking mechanism on the door and to not sit on or lean over the balcony.
Other common summer calls to the OCFD include people not using the crosswalks across Coastal Highway, unattended cooking and grilling, texting and driving, and walking and texting on the streets. However, not all of people’s interaction with department personnel is grim.
“We’re not only there during someone’s bad day or their worst day, but we also interact with them on more positive things,” Whittington says.
The department does a lot of public service and community engagement. It’s not uncommon for children and their parents to take a tour of the fire station. The firefighters will even let kids hop in the driver’s seat of a firetruck and get their pictures taken.
“We’re so welcoming. We want kids to learn some fire safety tips while they’re here. Firefighters are your friends,” Whittington advises. “There’s never a reason for you to be scared. If you ever see a firefighter and know that you need help, feel free to ask us. We try to build that relationship and foster that.”
It’s not just kids who are welcome to visit the station and ask questions, locals and visitors alike are also encouraged to do the same. OCFD has a number of resources for people to take advantage of, including simply stopping by a firehouse and speaking to the firefighters. The department shares fire safety and emergency tips on their social media channels, including informative videos that are light and made to educate all ages.
For travelers to Ocean City, Whittington suggests knowing where smoke alarms and the exits are in your hotel or rental property. It is also incredibly important to know the address of your accommodation at all times. It’s not uncommon for the department to receive a call from someone who is visiting and doesn’t know their address, making it challenging for the first responders to assist them.
Learn what you can do to keep yourself and others safe when you visit Ocean City. Don’t be afraid to seek out knowledge and advice from the friendly members of the Ocean City Fire Department.
Paid Parking Begins April 1 in Ocean City
With Ocean City’s summer season just around the corner, the city will resume paid parking. Ocean City’s paid parking season begins April 1 and runs through Oct. 31.
Parking Rates in Ocean City
Parking rates are $2 per hour on the street and in municipal parking lots. The Inlet Parking Lot is $3 per hour. There is a 30-minute grace period for all vehicles.
Handicapped vehicles (those with a valid handicapped license plate or visible placard) can park on the street or in municipal lots for free for up to one hour.
Inlet Parking Lot Rates
April 1–May 21: Free parking Monday–Thursday, $3/hour Friday–Sunday
May 22–Sept. 30: $3.50/hour daily
Oct. 1–31: Free parking Monday–Thursday, $3/hour Friday–Sunday
Street Parking and Other Municipal Lot Rates
April 1–May 21: Free parking Monday–Thursday, $2/hour Friday–Sunday
May 22–Sept. 30: $3/hour daily
Oct. 1–31: Free parking Monday–Thursday, $2/hour Friday–Sunday
How to Pay for Parking in Ocean City
Ocean City uses the “Pay by Plate” parking feature. This system allows drivers to forgo placing a receipt on their dashboard. Instead, they will enter their license plate number into one of the nearby solar-powered kiosks.
- Enter your license plate number into the kiosk then press the green button.
- Insert coins or your credit card and follow the on-screen instructions.
- To complete your transaction, press the green button.
- After you park, you are free to explore all there is to see and do in Ocean City.
Click here to read about things to do in Ocean City.
You can even extend your time in the spot via the ParkMobile App. Download the ParkMobile App for free on the iPhone app store, Google Play store for Android devices or the Microsoft store for Windows phones. You can also visit ParkMobile’s website to access the service.
Image from OCOcean.com
Where to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Ocean City
It’s no secret that Ocean City is a hub of activity during spring and summer, but did you also know that Ocean City is a hotspot for St. Patrick’s Day too? This year, St. Patrick’s Day falls on Tuesday, March 17, but the people and businesses of Ocean City will celebrate for more than just one day.
St. Patrick’s Day in Ocean City
Here are some events and places to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Ocean City.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Ocean City’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade takes place on Saturday, March 14 at noon. The parade route begins at 60th Street and moves south to 45th Street. This family-friendly parade will feature decorated cars, live music and more. After the parade, head to the 45th Street parking lot and keep the festivities going with the Irish Festival.
St. Patrick’s Day at Ocean City Restaurants and Bars
Restaurants and bars in Ocean City will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with food and drink specials.
Shenanigan’s Irish Pub will have live music from Wednesday, March 11 through Tuesday, March 17.
Pickles Pub will have a DJ Friday and Saturday, March 13–14. The locale will also have food and drink specials, including corned beef sliders, shepherd’s pie and Rueben sandwiches.
Click here for a Pickles Pub coupon.
Following the St. Patrick’s Day parade on Saturday, head to Seacrets for their Irie-ish Music Fest. This party, beginning at noon, will feature DJs and live music until after 10 p.m.
Click here to read more about Seacrets.
Fager’s Island will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on Friday, March 13 with the Shamrock-N-Roll. Enjoy live music as you dine on corned beef and cabbage or fish and chips. Fager’s will also have a party after the parade with live music on the deck and stage.
Click here to read more about Fager’s Island.
The 2020 Ocean City Film Festival takes places Thursday through Sunday, March 5–8.