OC Foodie Tours are coming to Ocean City this summer, to be exact. Foodie Tour founder Sandy Gillis says that she’s been wondering for ages why there aren’t any food tours in Ocean City. When she was recently snowed in for three days, she drew up the plans for one of her own.
The tour is designed to give guests a taste of Ocean City, both in OC’s midtown region from 28th to 37th street and the downtown/Boardwalk area, the two regions where the tours will be provided.
A culinary craft experience
When she and her husband go on vacation, Gillis said, they seek out foodie tours. Through the tours, they’ve been able to learn about the places they visit and explore the local cuisine while immediately burning off the calories in places like Philadelphia, New York, Seattle, Las Vegas and even Prague in the Czech Republic.
“You get a backstage view of the restaurants, little secrets, sometimes little dives, hole-in-the-wall places you would never go in,” she said. “You learn about the area and the heritage of the family and the recipes, and how they got started. And then after that, another day, we’ll go back and revisit the restaurants and try them again.”
When on the Foodie Tour, patrons will not only get to sample the fare of local restaurants — Higgins Crab House and the Dunes Manor’s Victorian Room midtown and The Angler and M.R. Ducks downtown are just a few examples of local restaurants included on the tour — they’ll also get to learn about the history of Ocean City.
Topics covered on the tour will include how OC became the white marlin capital of the world, the history of the railroad that once brought tourists to and from the peninsula and the history of the Ocean City Beach Patrol.
“Most people don’t know that teenagers ran the Beach Patrol for four years, four entire summers during the war,” Gillis said. “So little things like that — we had no drowning during those four years, but we had lots of dirty laundry on the beach.”
Part of every Foodie Tour ticket sold will be donated to the Ocean City Center for the Arts.
The OC Foodie Tour will kick off with “The Big Get-Together,” an event hosted by the Art League and Shore Craft Beer at the Center for the Arts, where foodies can come together and enjoy hand-crafted art, beer, food and friends. The event will feature three breweries, six restaurants, artisans and live music by Full Circle Duo.
The tours will officially start on May 15, and will operate for six months out of every year.