(Aug. 15, 2014) As the summer winds down, hotels are gearing up for Ocean City Hotel Week, a two-week event offering guests special deals on lodging Aug. 17-28.
With 39 businesses participating this year, the fifth annual Hotel Week will be the biggest yet, said Susan Jones, Executive Director for the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association.
“Our members are really aware of the promotion now and the town has done a nice job in helping us promote it to the visitors,” Jones said.
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.
“It’s historically the time when business drops off because that’s when schools go back and colleges go back,” Jones 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 from three to 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, also helps draw visitors to town during Hotel Week. New this year will be 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, Aug. 17-28, 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 will transform five beach blocks between North Division Street and Fourth Street Aug. 18-22 and the sand sculptures will remain on display Aug. 22-31, weather permitting. There will be free family activities and contests Aug. 23-24. Visit www.specialeventpro.com/oc-sandfest for more information.
- Ocean City Jeep Week: Jeep Week returns for its fifth year with vintage and military vehicles on display, an obstacle course, Jeep shows and more in Ocean City and Berlin. Visit www.oceancityjeepweek.com for more information.
- Life-saving Station Museum programs: The downtown museum holds free, family-friendly programs daily, except on Sundays, 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. 17 and 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. 17 and 24, catch a laser lights show cast on a five-story-tall 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: Visitors downtown can catch a fireworks show Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 18-19 and 25-26, at 10 p.m. on the beach at North Division Street.
- Movies on the Beach: The Carousel Hotel will play “Finding Nemo” on Wednesday, Aug. 20 and “Planes” on Wednesday, Aug. 27 starting at 8:30 p.m. on the beach at 118th Street. The Princess Royale hotel will play “Planes” on Thursday, Aug. 21 and “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. 21, hear Journey tribute band Eclipse at the free party from 7-9 p.m. On Thursday, Aug. 28, catch beach country group Randy Lee Ashcraft & the Saltwater Cowboys at the same time. Admission is free and beverages will be on sale. Bring your own beach chair.