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Peace, Love & Sandcastles: the Art League’s 13th Sandcastle Home Tour

In 2005, the Art League of Ocean City hosted their very first Sand Castle Home Tour event to raise money for a newer, expanded Art League headquarters. Today, those headquarters stand as the Ocean City Center for the Arts on 94th street bayside, and the Sandcastle Home Tours are going strong in their 13th year. 

The self-guided tour, taking place this Friday and Saturday from 9:30 to 4, features 10 beautiful Ocean City homes that ticketholders can visit as they please (although they can only visit each home once). It’s basically a weekend-long open house, except the homes aren’t for sale and each one seems more luxurious than the last. 

And just as there’s a wide-ranging variety of lifestyles on the peninsula between the locals and tourists, surfer dudes and kayakers, crabbers and small business owners, there’s a wide variety of homes on the tour, too.

Big house
(All of them, of course, are beautiful–see above.)

“It’s everything from oceanfront condos to big family homes to bachelor pads and little cottages,” the Art League’s Executive Director Rina Thaler explained. “It’s a mixture, so people see the different ways that people live in this area.”

All of the homes are located in the Ocean City region, some right in town and others a bit farther out. One home, for example, is on the border of Fenwick. Three homes are located in Ocean Pines, the featured neighborhood of this year’s tour, about 10 minutes away from Ocean City proper.

To gain access to the homes you’ll need a tour book, which you can pick up at the Center for the Arts after purchasing a ticket online here. Then on Friday and Saturday as you visit each home, you’ll get them crossed off in your book. 

“A lot of people like to go with friends and make a day of it,” Thaler said. “They stop and have lunch and plan their route. Couples do it together, sometimes friends.” 

But no matter who you’re with, the Sand Castle Home Tour is a great way to make a weekend out of exploring Ocean City. 

Each annual home tour is kicked off with a themed cocktail party. This year, the theme was Peace, Love & Art.
So the party was verrry 1970s. Showing up to the tour in bell bottoms is not a requirement, but it’s definitely not a bad idea, either.
Kristin is a writer and photographer in Ocean City, Maryland, and is the content manager for OceanCity.com and other State Ventures, LLC sites. She loves getting reader-submitted stories and photos, so send her an email anytime. She also works part-time at the Art League of Ocean City and the Ocean City Film Festival and lives just off the peninsula with her dog and fiancé. Her photos can be found on Instagram @oc_kristin.

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