(Aug. 22, 2014) Guests still have time to take advantage of special deals on lodging now through Aug. 28 during Ocean City Hotel Week.
With 39 businesses participating this year, the fifth annual event is the largest ever, said Susan Jones, Executive Director for the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association.
HMRA members launched Hotel Week in 2010 to help catch the last of the summer rush as families gear up for the new school year and visitation drops in the resort, Jones said.
“It’s historically the time when business drops off because that’s when schools go back and colleges go back,” she said. “It’s when hotels need it the most.”
Participating businesses will offer “beach bargains” of 15-25 percent off standard rates or an extra night free for those who stay between three and six nights. Some restrictions apply.
“It’s been very successful,” Jones said of the two-week deal. “It does seem to help (with business).”
A full schedule of events, many of them free, helps draw visitors to town during Hotel Week. New this year is OC Sandfest, a free event featuring professional sand sculptors downtown.
“There’s an added attraction this year that we didn’t have in the past,” Jones said. “It helps with our businesses.”
Visit www.oceancityhotelweek.com for a full listing of participating hotels and their special deals.
Events taking place during Ocean City Hotel Week, now through Aug. 28, include:
•Tall ship El Galeon Andalucia: Visit the tall ship on Ocean City’s bayside between Third and Fourth streets daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets cost $15 for adults, $11 for children ages 6-12 and are free for children under 6. Visit www.tallshipevent.com for more information.
• OC Sandfest: Professional sand sculptors have been transforming five beach blocks between North Division Street and Fourth Street all week and their sand sculptures will be on display through Aug. 31, weather permitting. There will be free family activities and contests Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 23-24. Visit www.specialeventpro.com/oc-sandfest for more information.
• Ocean City Jeep Week: Jeep Week is back for its fifth year with vintage and military vehicles on display, an obstacle course, Jeep shows and more in Ocean City and Berlin this weekend. Visit www.oceancityjeepweek.com for more information.
• Life-saving Station Museum programs: The downtown museum holds free, family-friendly programs daily at 10 a.m. at the Boardwalk tram station near the inlet. See each day’s program and a short description at http://bit.ly/1sOsEB5.
• Sundaes in the Park: On Sunday, Aug. 24, visit Northside Park at 125th Street for ice cream sundaes and live entertainment from 7-9 p.m.
• OC Beach Lights: On Sunday, Aug. 24, catch a laser lights show cast on a five-story beach ball complete with music and fireworks on the beach at North Division Street at 9:30, 10 and 10:30 p.m.
• Beach fireworks: Catch a downtown fireworks show Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 25-26, at 10 p.m. on the beach at North Division Street.
• Movies on the Beach: The Carousel Hotel will play “Planes” on Wednesday, Aug. 27 starting at 8:30 p.m. on the beach at 118th Street. The Princess Royale hotel will play “Free Willy” on Thursday, Aug. 28 starting at 8:30 p.m. on the beach at 91st Street.
• Sunset Park Party Nights: On Thursday, Aug. 28, hear beach country group Randy Lee Ashcraft & the Saltwater Cowboys from 7-9 p.m. at Sunset Park on South Philadelphia Avenue downtown. Admission is free and beverages will be on sale. Bring a beach chair.