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What's Happening in Ocean City, NJ 12/12/18
Admission Buttons for Family-Friendly First Night on Sale Now

The Ocean City Theatre Company opened a five-show run of the beloved musical “Annie” with two great performances this weekend, and tickets are on sale for three more shows on the Ocean City Music Pier on Friday and Saturday.

The original Broadway production of “Annie” won seven 1977 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Book and Score. It ran for 2,377 performances and has subsequently been produced all over the world. The original production is one of the 20 longest-running shows in Broadway history, and after more than four decades, it continues to be one of the most successful musicals on stage. 

With music by Charles Strouse and book by Thomas Meehan, “Annie” is directed by Shannon Agnew, choreographed by Elizabeth Worley and music-directed by Erin Whitcomb. The show will feature local youth, as well as a cast of professional actors from New York City. Boasting one of Broadway’s most memorable scores, including “It’s the Hard-Knock Life,” “Easy Street,” “N.Y.C.” and the ever-optimistic “Tomorrow,” the show is perfect for the holiday season.


Show times are 7:30 p.m. Friday (Dec. 14) and 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday (Dec. 15). Tickets are $18 to $20. Call 609-399-6111, visit oceancityvacation.com/boxofficeor stop by the Roy Gillian Welcome Center (on the Rt. 52 causeway), City Hall (861 Asbury Avenue) or the 46th Street Welcome Center (46th Street and West Avenue).

“Annie” won’t be the only way to get into the Christmas spirit in Ocean City. Free horse-drawn carriage rides will be available noon to 3 p.m. on downtown Asbury Avenue on Saturday and Sunday (Dec. 15 and 16) and on the following weekend (Dec. 22 and 23).

Santa will travel to Ocean City to visit with children for breakfast 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. over the next two weekends. He’ll be at Yianni’s Café (841 Asbury Avenue) on Saturday (Dec. 15), Jon & Patty’s (637 Asbury Avenue) on Sunday (Dec. 16), back at Jon & Patty’s on Saturday (Dec. 22), and at Arlene’s (624 Asbury Avenue) on Sunday (Dec. 23).

Santa also will be available for photos in an Ocean City Beach Patrol lifeguard boat noon to 3 p.m. at the Ocean City Music Pier on Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 23. Cost is $10 per photo.


All-inclusive admission buttons for Ocean City’s popular and family-friendly First Night New Year’s Eve celebration are on sale now. The $20 buttons are good for more than 70 shows and activities at venues throughout Ocean City.

They can be purchased online at www.firstnightocnj.com or by calling 609-399-6111. They’re also available at the Roy Gillian Welcome Center on the Ninth Street causeway, City Hall’s Welcome Center at 861 Asbury Avenue or the Welcome Center at 46th Street and West Avenue.

Some of the new entertainment for this year’s lineup includes The Spinners (with six Grammy nominations for hits like “Then Came You,” “Working My Way Back to You” and “The Rubberband Man”), Disney Junior’s Choo-Choo Soul with Genevieve, an interactive science show from the Franklin Institute, a slapstick comedy dog show called “Johnny Peers & the Muttville Comix,” and Vocal Trash, which is described as “Glee Meets Stomp.” A Choo Choo Train will run between Sixth Street and Eighth Street on the boardwalk between 4 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Traditional favorites including ice-skating, a “Rockin’ New Year’s Eve with the Ocean City Pops,” the Fabulous Greaseband and midnight fireworks will return.


Ocean City will celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at two different events on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019: the Day of Service and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ceremony and Soul Food Dinner.

The ceremony, a long tradition in Ocean City, moves this year from its customary date on the Saturday before to the Monday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Jan. 21. It will be held at noon at the Hughes Performing Arts Center of Ocean City High School.

The event includes the honoring of Ocean City residents with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Services Award, and the city is currently seeking nominations from the public for this year’s honorees. The awards are given to citizens who exemplify the philosophy and ideas of the late Dr. King.

Anybody interested in making a nomination can learn more and find online and printable forms at www.ocnj.us/mlk. Deadline for submission is Tuesday, Dec. 18.


CHRISTMAS MARKET (through Dec. 15): The Ocean City Arts Center’s talented pottery and mosaic students will host a “Christmas Market” through December 15. The one-of-a-kind pottery and mosaic art pieces make great Christmas gifts. The pottery group’s theme is “A Holiday Table” and they have created all pieces necessary to dress your dining table this season. Included in the show is jewelry, all dinnerware, Christmas decorations, home décor, garden décor and much more. The Ocean City Arts Center is located in the Community Center at 1735 Simpson Avenue.  Hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. For further information, call (609) 399-7628.

ST.DAMIEN PARISH ANNUAL CHRISTMAS CONCERT (Dec. 14): The St. Damien Parish Choir with musical guests, under the direction of Debra Roland, will perform its annual Concert of Traditional Christmas Music. The concert is at 4 p.m. at St. Augustine Church (13th Street and Wesley Avenue). 

“A JOYFUL CHRISTMAS” CONCERT (Dec. 16): The Ocean City Free Public Library will present a free event at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16 featuring Pamela Whitman and her award-winning Peace Concert. Flutes for Peace promote peace and understanding through flute choir music. The ensemble performs classical, pop, inspirational, sacred and holiday music.

FIRST NIGHT (Dec. 31): All-inclusive admission buttons for Ocean City’s family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebration are on sale now. For complete information, visit firstnightocnj.com.

FIRST DAY (Jan. 1, 2019): Events include the First Day Shopping Extravaganza in downtown Ocean City on Asbury Avenue from Sixth Street to 14th Street. Registration for a 5-kilometer boardwalk run starts at 11 a.m. at the Music Pier, and the run starts at 1 p.m. (Pre-register at runsignup.com). The traditional First Dip in the ocean starts at 2 p.m. adjacent to the Music Pier.