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Two holiday special events are set for this weekend in Ocean City: The Second Big Holiday Craft Show at the Music Pier and the “Earlier than the Bird” pre-holiday extravaganza in the downtown from 8 a.m. till noon.


Earlier than the Bird is a colorful, fun event set for Sat., Nov. 23 that extends from 6th to 11th Streets on Asbury Avenue. You are invited to check out special savings offered in over 100 downtown shops the Saturday before Thanksgiving. You are also invited to shop comfortably in your pajamas if you so choose. Free turkeys from Boyar’s Market will be awarded to the best dressed.

There will be free coffee and give-aways at John and Patty’s Bistro, 6th and Asbury, Ocean City Coffee Shop, 9th and Asbury and Starbucks, 11th and Asbury. Sign up in stores to win up to $150 in gift certificates.

The event continues from Noon to 3 p.m. with free Horse and Carriage Rides and Free Photos with Santa. Merchants advise you that the best deals will be from 8 a.m. till noon. For information call 1-800-BeachNJ or access www.oceancityvacation.com.

The Second of two popular Craft Shows, The Holiday Celebration of Fine Crafts, is set for the Music Pier, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 23-24. This second show will feature a completely different group of outstanding artisans from throughout the East Coast exhibiting and selling one of a kind specialties ideal for gift giving during the holiday season. There is free parking at nearby City lots. A $3 contribution benefits local charities. Children under 12 are free. For more information, call 1-800-822-4112 .

(Nov. 24) The Masterworks Choir and Orchestra present Mendelssohn’s “Elijah” on Sunday at 4 p.m. at St. Peter’s United Methodist Church. A free will offering will be accepted.

(Nov. 26) A Community Thanksgiving Service sponsored by the Ocean City Ecumenical Council (Food Cupboard and Clothes Closet) is set for 7 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, 7th and Wesley Ave. There will be participation by the Ministerium plus a combined Community Choir. The President’s Thanksgiving proclamation will be read and Richard Stanislaw will be guest speaker. There will be a free will offering to support the Ocean City Ecumenical Council. Everyone is encouraged to bring a contribution of non perishable food for the City Food Cupboard. Parking is available.

(Nov. 28) The Fast and the Furriest 5K Turkey Trot and One Mile Fun Run plus a 5K Walk is set for Thanksgiving morning, also featuring a 1 mile Kid’s Fun Run. This event benefits the Ocean City Humane Society, named one of the best shelters for its size in the country.

Pre-register at www.active.com . Same day registration is 7 a.m. to 8:25 a.m. in front of the Music Pier, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace. Race starts 8:30 a.m. Applications are available at Aquatic and Fitness Center, The Sneaker Shop, 9th and Asbury Ave. and the Humane Society. For more information, call (609) 398-5068.

(Nov. 29) Christmas in the Downtown, “Our Miracle on Asbury Ave.,” 2 to 5 p.m. Join the Merchants and Chamber of Commerce kicking off an old-fashioned Downtown Christmas. Santa will arrive at 5 p.m. dramatically from City Hall Roof, the Philly Phanatic will cavort from 4-6 p.m., Miss Winter Wonderland will be crowned and there will be entertainment by the Ocean City Theater Co. There will be photos with Santa at the Gazebo across from City Hall and free horse and carriage rides and more. For information, call (609) 391-0240.

Planning Ahead? Breakfast with Santa will be at the following Ocean City Restaurants from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Nov. 30, Sunrise Café , 949 Asbury Ave., (609) 398-9300; Dec. 1, Arlene’s on Asbury, 624 Asbury Ave., (609) 399-3639; Dec. 7, Yanni’s Café, 841 Asbury Ave., (609) 391-1113; Dec. 8, Sunrise Café, 949 Asbury Ave. (609) 398-9300; Dec. 14, Jon and Patty’s, 637 Asbury Ave., (609) 399-3377; Dec.15, Arlene’s on Asbury, 624 Asbury Ave., (609) 399-3639; Dec. 21, Jon and Patty’s, 637 Asbury Ave., (609) 399-3377; Dec. 22, Yanni’s Café, 841 Asbury Ave., (609) 391-1113.

(Dec. 6) The City’s annual Christmas Parade is set for 6:30 p.m. from 6th to 11th Streets on Asbury Avenue. The event is sponsored by the Ocean City Retail Merchants Assn. For information, call (609) 525-9290.

(Dec. 7) Santa Paws: Bring your pets to have their photos taken with Santa from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Ocean City Humane Society, Shelter Rd. off Tennessee Ave. Cost per photo is $10. Proceeds benefit the work of the Society. Call (609) 399-2018.

(Dec. 7) The Ocean City Pops Orchestra presents “Joy to the World,” a Symphonic and Choral Celebration of the Joyous Sounds of Christmas. Heraldic trumpets, dazzling bells, triumphant choirs join the Pops in this annual holiday tradition, at Ocean City Tabernacle, 550 Wesley Ave., sponsored by Norman and JoAnne Schaut, 7: 30 pm. Tickets are $15. Call (609) 525-9300 for more information.

(Dec. 7) Messiah Sing-In: Atlantic Youth Orchestra performs at Ocean City Tabernacle, 4 p.m. Free admission. For more information, call (609) 399-1915 or visit www.OCTabernacle.org.

(Dec. 7-8) Ocean City Train Show, Music Pier, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Large Lionel and Garden size train exhibits, vendors selling model trains, accessories and decorations, repairs done on premises by technician Dick Yard. Call (609-525-9300 for information.

THIS JUST IN: The Betsy Young Memorial Fund’s Annual Benefit Dinner sponsored by Johnson’s Popcorn will be held November 21st at the Ocean City Intermediate School from 5-8 p.m. Santa will visit from 6-8 p.m. brought to you by the Ocean City Emporium. Program features Jennifer Knight from WAYV Radio, the Ocean City Fire Department with Movember, local band Diamond & Rust and Santa.

Dinner includes Salad, Baked Rigatoni, Chicken Tenders, Vegetable Medley, Dessert, Coffee, Hot Chocolate and more, $12 for adults, $8 for students. Proceeds benefit Project Inspiration and the Betsy Young Scholarship Fund.