Ocean City’s Christmas Parade returns at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1. The season at America’s Greatest Family Resort extends far past the summer, and the annual parade is a highlight of the Christmas season — with an array of bands, floats and other entries bringing a little warmth to the winter.
The event gives spectators time to shop and dine on downtown Asbury Avenue before and after the 6 p.m. start time. The parade starts on the Avenue at Sixth Street and proceeds to 11th Street.
This year’s parade features the Ocean City High School Band, Absegami High School Band, Wildwood High School Band, Egg Harbor Township High School Band and Pennsport String Band. Miss New Jersey Kaitlyn Schoeffel, second runner-up in the Miss America Pageant, will participate. Alexa Noone, New Jersey’s representative in the Miss USA Pageant also will be part of the procession. The combined choirs of the Upper Township Elementary and Middle Schools will be in the parade and sing in front of City Hall at Ninth Street and Asbury Avenue after the event. The cast of Ocean City Theatre Company’s “A Christmas Carol: The Broadway Musical” also will join the lineup.
Mrs. Claus will be able to join her husband this year. As part of the annual tradition, Santa Claus provides a finale to the parade, greeting boys and girls by horse-and-carriage.
For more information, call 609-399-6111.
TICKETS ON SALE FOR FIRST NIGHT OCEAN CITY
All-inclusive First Night admission buttons – good for entry to every venue in Ocean City’s family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebratration – are on sale now for a discounted $15 (if purchased before Dec. 15). Visit firstnightocnj.com to buy them online or stop by Roy Gillian Welcome Center on the Route 52 causeway or the City Hall Welcome Center at Ninth Street and Asbury Avenue.
The legendary Chubby Checker will help Ocean City celebrate with three performances on the Ocean City Music Pier as part of the 2018 festivities.
Checker first performed “The Twist” on “American Bandstand” in 1960, and dancing has never been the same. Checker will be part of a spectacular lineup of more than 75 shows and activities at venues throughout Ocean City during the alcohol-free celebration on Dec. 31, 2017.
Checker will perform shows at 9 p.m., 10 p.m. and 11 p.m. on the Music Pier, before fireworks cap off the evening’s entertainment and welcome the year 2018.
MORE HOLIDAY EVENTS IN OCEAN CITY
FREE HORSE AND CARRIAGE RIDES (Weekends through Dec. 23): Enjoy an old-fashioned ride down Asbury Avenue noon to 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Start in front of City Hall at Ninth Street and Asbury Avenue. For more information, call 1-800-BEACH-NJ.
BREAKFAST WITH SANTA (Weekends through Dec. 23): 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, at Jon & Patty’s (637 Asbury Avenue, 609-399-3377) and Sunday, Dec. 3, at Yianni’s Cafe (841 Asbury Avenue, 609-391-1113). See oceancityvacation.com for full schedule.
PHOTOS WITH SANTA (Weekends through Dec. 23): Join Santa in an Ocean City Beach Patrol lifeguard boat for photos noon to 3 p.m. at the Ocean City Music Pier. For more information, call 1-800-BEACH-NJ.
WINTER SKATE JAM II (Dec. 2): A skateboarding competition with prizes in multiple divisions starts at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 2 at the new park at Fifth Street and Asbury Avenue. Entry fee is donation of a child’s Christmas present for Waves of Caring. Call 609-399-6111 for more information.
TRAIN SHOW (Dec. 2 and 3): Display of model trains on the Ocean City Music Pier (Boardwalk at Moorlyn Terrace) will be 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $3 for adults and $1 for children. For more information, call 609-399-6111.
COMMUNITY HOLIDAY FESTIVAL AND HISTORIC TROLLEY TOUR (Dec. 3): Join the Ocean City Historical Museum 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 3. Start at the museum (at the Ocean City Community Center, 1735 Simpson Avenue), travel this historic downtown, visit Life Saving Station No. 30 and return. Tours will be 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Price is $10 per person. Children 16-and-under accompanied by an adult are free. Visit Mrs. Claus’s Market at the museum, which opens Dec. 3 and continues through December. Call 609-399-1801 for more information.
NEW YORK TRIP TO THE MET (Dec. 7): The Ocean City Arts Center is again sponsoring a bus trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on Thursday, Dec. 7. Tickets cost $50 and must be reserved in advance by calling the Arts Center at (609) 399-7628. The bus leaves from the Ocean City Community Center at 7 a.m. and leaves New York at 5:30 p.m. Admission to the Met is by donation at the door.
TENOR JOHN TAYLOR (Dec. 9): Taylor will be in concert with the Tapestry Strings and Angelus Chorus directed by Richard Stanislaw at 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9 at St. Peter’s United Methodist Church, Eighth Street and Central Avenue. Traditional Christmas music including carols, Beethoven’s “Hallelujah” and Taylor singing “O Holy Night.” Ruth Fritsch, principal accompanist, with Carolyn Lothian on the grand piano and Jeff Seals at the pipe organ.
‘A CHRISTMAS CAROL, THE BROADWAY MUSICAL’ (Dec. 8-16): Ebenezer Scrooge is a prosperous curmudgeon who believes that personal wealth is far more valuable than the happiness and comfort of others. But he’s forced to face his selfish ways when three ghosts on Christmas Eve lead him through his Past, Present and Future. Showtimes: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 8, 9, 15 and 16. 2 p.m. Dec. 10 and 16 at the Ocean City Music Pier. Presented by the Ocean City Theatre Company. Tickets are on sale now at www.oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice.
FIRST NIGHT NEW YEAR’S EVE CELEBRATION (Dec. 31): Get your FIRST NIGHT ADMISSION BUTTONS NOW! for Ocean City’s gala New Year’s Eve Celebration that provides continuous family entertainment from 4 p.m. until midnight capped by a fireworks display. Buttons are now available for $15 at firstnightocnj.com or by calling 1-800-BEACH-NJ. Buttons are also available at the City Hall Welcome Center, 9th Street and Asbury Ave., or at the Route 52 Welcome Center. After December 15, buttons will be priced at $20.
FIRST DAY AT THE BEACH (Jan. 1): Ocean City greets the new year with its annual 5-kilometer boardwalk run at 1 p.m. and its “First Dip” in the Atlantic Ocean at 2 p.m. Call 1-800-BEACH-NJ for more information. Online registration is open at https://runsignup.com/Race/NJ/OceanCity/FirstDay5KBoardwalkRun.