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Sizzlin’ Summer Calendar

Ocean City

Photo: Rachael Pacella, License: N/A

Rachael Pacella

Photo: Terry Kilby, License: N/A

Terry Kilby


Things to See

Art League of Ocean City, 502 94th St., (410) 524-9433, artleagueofoceancity.com. Don’t forget to seek out a little culcha’ on your trip to the shore; forgo the wet T-shirt contest and peruse some work by local artists at this community gallery. Perfect for an afternoon when your sunburn could benefit from a little time indoors with therapeutic watercolors.

Jolly Roger Amusement Park, 2901 Coastal Hwy., (410) 289-3477, jollyrogerpark.com. No fear of seaweed—or hammerheads—caressing your leg here. Unleash your child/inner-child on the spaghetti of chutes and slides at Splash Mountain, or try the go-karts, zip-line, and plenty of other rides and amusements. If there was a hotel on premises, in other words, we might never leave.

K-Coast Surf Sessions, 35th Street, Ocean City, (410) 524-8500, waveridingschool.com, $65-$85. While boogie boarders fight for those little hiccups that pass for waves closest to the shore, you could be comfortably hanging loose a little further off—riding tubes, tubing arcs, arcing cowabungas, and being generally admired from afar for your hot surfing skills.

Ocean City Life-Saving Station Museum, 813 S. Atlantic Ave. at southern end of the boardwalk, (410) 289-4991, ocmuseum.org. Just because this isn’t a prime destination for the Senior Week crowd doesn’t mean you have to be a senior citizen to appreciate delightfully quirky exhibits like “Sands from Around the World” and the groovy collection of vintage bathing suits.

Planet Maze and Lasertron, 3305 Coastal Highway, (410) 524-4386, planetmaze.com. Shame there isn’t a place in OC where our passions for laser tag, miniature golf, and indoor modular play mazes can be effortlessly satisfied on the same trip. Wait—holy smokes! A boredom-zapper if there’s ever been one.

Ripley’s Believe It or Not, 401 S. Atlantic Ave., (410) 289-5600, oceancity.ripleys.com, $13.99, ages 6-12 $7.99, ages 5 and under free. When a gigantic shark collided with the building that now houses Ripley’s Believe It or Not near the inlet, what might have remained a monument to a freak tragedy became a lucrative opportunity. If you think it doesn’t get any weirder than sand sculptures of Jesus in OC, check out Ripley’s “Odditorium” with its two-headed cows, shrunken heads, and other curiosities, along with interactive games like the Marvelous Mirror Maze and the Impossible LazeRace.

Trimper’s Rides of Ocean City, Boardwalk and S. 1st St., (410) 289-8617, trimpersrides.com. “No trip to Ocean City is complete without . . .” is a phrase we wouldn’t dare allow ourselves to use, but—deal with it—no trip to Ocean City is complete without a visit to this old-fashioned carnival/amusement park/date locale anchoring the southern end of the boardwalk. You’ve got your Merry Mixer and your Tilt-a-Whirl, your campy fun house and your ferris wheel. Go at night, when it’s all lit up.

Stuff to Do

Spring Arts and Crafts Show, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. May 26, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. May 27, Convention Center, 4001 Coastal Hwy., (410) 213-0735, ococean.com, free. Make time between barbecues on Memorial Day weekend to browse wood crafts, jewelry, flowers, candles, garden accessories, and other homemade items, including chocolate and fudge for the sweet-teethed.

Council of Baltimore Ravens Roosts Parade, 10 a.m. June 2, 19th Street and Baltimore Avenue to 26th Street, (443) 618-5130, ococean.com, free. Players, cheerleaders, mascots, floats, and the Pep Band of Baltimore’s Marching Ravens take to the streets. Attire is casual, purple.

Ride Across Maryland, June 2-4, Ocean City, (410) 992-9999, rideacrossmaryland.org. Bikers more angelic than hellish ride to benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s Maryland affiliate.

OC Car and Truck Show, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. June 9, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. June 10, Convention Center, 4001 Coastal Highway, (302) 436-0183, occarshow.com. Be advised: Promotional materials promise a lot of heat (“the hottest models” and the “hottest vehicles,” get it?) at this jamboree for the fast and furiously curious about automobiles, with vendors to help you finally pimp your Accord.

OC Air Show, noon June 9-10, ocairshow.com, free to view from beach. Throw a blanket on the sand and look heavenward for daring feats of airborne acrobatics, parachute jumps, fighter jet formations, and—our favorite—skywriting. Check the web site for tickets to special events like parties and happy hours, a display village, and breakfasts with the pilots.

Ocean City Shark Tournament, 3:30-7 p.m., June 13-17, Ocean City Fishing Center, 12940 Inlet Isle Lane, (410) 213-1121, ocsharktournament.com, free for spectators. Serious fishermen—more Captain Ahab than Bass Pro Shops—go after serious fish. Be there for the weigh-ins to see who nets the biggest and Jaws-iest.

Art’s Alive, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., June 16-17, Northside Park Complex, 125th Street, bayside, (800) 626-2326, ococean.com, free. There’s more to art in OC than crude T-shirts and airbrushed caricatures on the boardwalk. Live music, activities for kids, and works by over 100 artists for sale—all with a pleasing view of the bay. Why not?

Movies on the Beach, 8:30 p.m. Mondays and Fridays June 25-Aug. 10, beach at 27th Street, (800) 626-2326, ococean.com, free. Y’know, sometimes after a long day spent doing nothing in particular on your vacation, you just want to watch a kids movie on the beach.

Family Fun Olympics, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Tuesdays, June 26-Aug. 7, beach at 27th Street, (800) 626-2326, ococean.com, free. Because four times on the ride down you threatened to turn this car around and drive all the way back home. Because Junior mercilessly went Godzilla on Suzie’s sand castle. Because the hotel beds have so much give, they leave you begging. Yes, the whole family stands to benefit from the stress relief on offer each week at the Family Fun Olympics.

Concerts on the Beach, 8-9:30 p.m. Wednesdays in July and August excluding July 4 and Aug. 1, North Division Street beachfront, (800) 626-2326, ococean.com, free. Mosey down to the beach, kick off your shoes, and get down to acts including an Elvis tribute, a reggae band, and a “beach country” outfit calling itself Randy Lee Ashcraft and the Saltwater Cowboys, who secure our endorsement through name alone.

Captain Craig Swim, 5 p.m., July 14, 14th Street on the beach, (410) 289-7556. Calling all waterbugs: crawl and butterfly your way through this mile-long race in the ocean, or do the half-miler if you’d rather feel your limbs the next morning.

Sundaes in the Park, 7-9 p.m. Sundays, July 8-Aug. 26, Northside Park, 125th Street, bayside, (800) 626-2326, ococean.com. We have long maintained that any event is improved by custom sundaes, so have no reservations about this summer concert series featuring a tribute band along with a kids’ act each week. What—you have box seats at the Meyerhoff? And where, pray tell, do they keep the rainbow sprinkles? The defense rests.

OC Tuna Tournament, 4-7:30 p.m. July 13-14, 4-7 p.m. July 15, 12940 Inlet Isle Lane, (410) 213-1121, octunatournament.com. They might seem like the chicken of the sea in your sandwich, but tuna take some elbow grease to wrangle. Come see ’em sans salad at the weigh-in, and leave the can-opener at home.

Starpower National Talent Competition, July 16-21, Convention Center, 4001 Coastal Highway, (301) 870-9550 starpowertalent.com. A dance and talent competition sure to make you realize how fantastically unimpressive you really are at doing the electric slide and the Macarena.

Jesus at the Beach Music and Ministry Festival, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Convention Center and 7-10 p.m. on the beach, July 30-Aug. 1, Convention Center and North Division Street on the beach, (410) 289-1296, jesusatthebeach.org. Spot the Lord in your bowl of crab soup? Revive yourself with praise and worship in the morning before heading to the beach at night for music, dance, drama, and testimony.

Greek Festival, noon-11 p.m. July 27-28, noon-9 p.m. July 29, 40th Street and the bay, (410) 524-0990, ococean.com. Not grease—Greece: Pizza, french fries, and funnel cakes aren’t going anywhere; spanakopita, stuffed grape leaves, and baklava is what we’re talking about, along with stuff to buy and music and dancing at night.

Berlin Peach Festival, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Aug. 4, Calvin B. Taylor House Museum, 208 N. Main St., Berlin, (410) 641-1019, ococean.com, free. Hop back to the mainland for this celebration of all things peach (including a pie-eating contest), plus hand-made crafts, lots of activities for kids, and music. And peach ice cream and peach dumplings and peach jam and . . .

White Marlin Open, 4-9:15 p.m. Aug. 6-10, Harbour Island, 14th Street and the Bay, (410) 289-9229. whitemarlinopen.com, free for spectators. OC happens to be the “White Marlin Capital of the World,” don’tcha know, and after you’ve seen the big game hauled in by the anglers in this tournament, you’ll understand why.

Dew Tour, Aug. 16-19, all events at beach near the inlet, allisports.com. The skateboard and BMX extravaganza returns to OC for a second year of extreme and indeed xtreme entertainment; prepare for music and partying on the beach, plus the chance to meet affable and shaggy-haired competitors like Maryland’s own Bucky Lasek.

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