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Easter Events Mark Start of Season in Ocean City

What's Happening in Ocean City, NJ 3/28/18

Egg Hunt, Sunrise Service and Fashion Promenade Scheduled

Ocean City’s Easter Fashion Promenade takes place with judging at 1 p.m. Sunday (April 1) in front of the Ocean City Music Pier on the boardwalk at Moorlyn Terrace. The annual event pays tribute to an era when families showed off their finery during strolls on the boardwalk.

Anybody is welcome to enter the free event, and no advance registration is required. Awards will be given the following age categories: newborn-to-2, 3-to-5, 6-to-8 and 9-to-12 (everybody wins in these categories). Other divisions include: Best Dressed Teen Male, Best Dressed Teen Female, Best Dressed Gentleman, Best Dressed Woman, Best Dressed Couple, Most Unusual Bonnet, Best Easter Bonnet and Best Dressed Family.

The Philly Keys will return to Ocean City with their hit dueling piano show to start the festivities at noon Sunday. The Easter Bunny will be on hand for photographs after the Promenade.

Ocean City’s Easter events start at 6:30 a.m. Sunday with a nondenominational Sunrise Service on the Music Pier. The speaker is United Methodist District Superintendent Brian Roberts. Music will include: Jeff Seals on piano, Jack Melton and Laura Olivero on trumpets, and seventh-grader Treasa Hayes as a soloist. Participants include Mayor Jay Gillian, Sr. Joelle Thren, Pastors Mark Bruesehoff, Terry Lothian, Elizabeth Mallozzi, Larry Oksten, John Sheldon and Marcia Stanford. All are invited to attend.

The second of two Great Egg Hunts on the beach starts promptly at 2:30 p.m. Saturday (March 31). The free annual event invites children ages 7 and under to search for 100,000 eggs scattered in the sand and stuffed with candy and items from local merchants. Separate areas are set up for different groups: 2-and-unders (11th Street), 3-year-olds (11th Street), 4- and 5-year-olds (12th Street), 6- and 7-year-olds (13th Street), and special-needs children (14th Street). The event is sponsored by the Boardwalk Merchants Association. The rain date is Sunday, April 1.

Arrive early or on time, as the hunt often goes quickly. Remember that the 34th Street Bridge is under construction and limited to an alternating one-lane traffic pattern. The Ninth Street Bridge will provide unrestricted access. All street parking and municipal lots are free at this time of year.

TICKETS ON SALE FOR IMAGINATION MOVERS AND BROADWAY ON THE OC BOARDWALK

The Emmy-award winning Imagination Movers will bring their family-friendly rock concert to the Ocean City Music Pier on July 14. The innovative show includes some high-flying (toilet paper that is), smoke ring-skying (can you say, “Vortex!”) and new song stylings. The interactive show includes lots of fun, favorite music and is appropriate for all ages.

Tickets ($18 to $23) go on sale Thursday (March 28). Visit oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice, call 609-399-6111, or stop by the City Hall Welcome Center or the Roy Gillian Welcome Center on the Route 52 causeway. Meet-and-greet passes are available.

Tickets ($18 to $20) are also on sale now for “Broadway on the OC Boardwalk” at 7:30 p.m. June 27 at the Music Pier. The show includes professional performers from Ocean City Theatre Company’s 2018 Summer Season bringing Broadway favorites to life.

This year’s show features Michael Lee Brown, who once spent his summers in Ocean City attending the OCTC theater camps and eventually performing with the professional company in “Seussical” and “Cinderella.” Brown went on to achieve success on Broadway. He is currently the alternate Evan Hansen, performing weekly as the title role in the six-time Tony Award and Grammy-winning musical “Dear Evan Hansen.”

He has been seen on television in shows like “Happyish” and live with the “Dear Evan Hansen” company on the “Today Show.”  Michael just released his solo EP, “Way It Used to Be,” comprised of his original songs and produced by Matthew James Thomas (star of “Pippin”). 

UPCOMING EVENTS

LIVING LAST SUPPER (March 29 and 30): Live actors sit “frozen” in a depiction of Leonardo Da Vinci’s famous painting. One-by-one, they break their freeze to speak their mind on the fateful evening. At the Ocean City Tabernacle auditorium at 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday.

GIRLS WEEKEND (April 6 to 8): The event features hotel and bed-and-breakfast packages, dining offers, shopping discounts, a popular fashion show, prizes, yoga and wellness classes, craft projects and demonstrations at various locations throughout Ocean City. It provides a great reason to escape to the shore early in the season and to see what Ocean City’s downtown retail district has to offer. For a detailed schedule of Girls Weekend events, accommodations and participating businesses, call 609-399-1412, visit the Girls Weekend blog at www.oceancityvacation.com or check out the Facebook pages “Downtown OCNJ” and “OceanCityNJVacation.” Tickets ($20) for a Fashion Show Kickoff at Glazed Over Studios (704 Asbury Avenue) at 7 p.m. April 6 are on sale now at City Hall, the Route 52 Welcome Center, Ta-Dah (1040 Asbury Ave.) and the 7th Street Surf Shop (720 Asbury Ave.).

‘DEFYING GRAVITY’ (April 7): Kelli Rabke’s “Defying Gravity” show is part of the third annual Girls Weekend. The show stars Rabke, a Broadway star and Bergen County mom of two young children. Rabke will weave tales of motherhood, music, and the misadventures of life and love. She performs 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 7 on the Ocean City Music Pier. For tickets, visit oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice, call 609-399-6111, or stop by the City Hall Welcome Center or the Roy Gillian Welcome Center on the Route 52 causeway.

DOO DAH PARADE (April 14): The Doo Dah Parade was first held in Ocean City in 1986 as an event to herald the end of income tax season. It featured unusual entries like beach chair drill teams and fan clubs of legendary comedians. The parade begins at noon on Asbury Avenue at Sixth Street, proceeds to 12th Street and turns east to the boardwalk, finishing at Sixth Street. For more than a decade, the parade has been anchored by a legion of dogs from the Basset Hound Rescue League. Registration is open for any individuals, groups or businesses who want to participate in the parade. Joining is a great way to bring awareness to your business or cause before the summer season. Sign up at www.ocnj.us/Doo-Dah-Parade.

MR MATURE AMERICA PAGEANT (April 14): The event is the first and only pageant of its kind in the United States. Erik Estrada, who captured the hearts of millions of fans worldwide in his six-year run as highway patrol officer Frank Poncherello in the TV series "CHiPs," will be host of this year’s show. The historic Flanders Hotel returns as a founding sponsor this year. The Flanders will cater meals for contestants and will offer special rates for attendees during the pageant weekend. Tickets for the show ($18 to $30) are on sale now and available at oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice, by calling 609-399-6111, or in-person at the City Hall Welcome Center or the Roy Gillian Welcome Center on the Route 52 causeway.