Martin Z. Mollusk Predicts Early Summer in Ocean City

Martin Z. Mollusk Predicts Early Summer in Ocean City

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Martin Z. Mollusk sees his shadow for the 48th year in a row, signaling summer is just around the corner.

By MADDY VITALE

So, a crustacean, some crown holders, a meteorologist, a string band and a group of singers joined for an event Friday morning.

Any guesses where? Yep – Ocean City, of course. To the delight of the spectators inside the Music Pier, Martin Z. Mollusk, Ocean City’s weather forecaster and mascot, with the help of guest meteorologist “Nor’easter Nick” Pittman, celebrated the resort’s version of Groundhog Day.

“I don’t speak crustacean,” Nor’easter Nick joked with the crowd.

Despite cloudy skies, rain and less than balmy temperatures, Martin Z. saw his shadow for the 48th consecutive time – albeit with a little help — to predict an early arrival of summer.

Nor’easter Nick Pittman anxiously awaits word from firefighter and EMT Wallace Gilchrist about Martin Z.’s vitals.

City official and emcee for the event Michael Allegretto held up a big flashlight to give the hermit crab some assistance.

Miss Ocean City Maddyn Randazzo, Junior Miss Makenna Fleming and Little Miss Arianna DiAntonio were on hand for the zany fun.

And just like that, the sun came out.

Not exactly, but by seeing his shadow, Martin Z. predicted summer would come one week early.

From left, Junior Miss Ocean City Makenna Fleming, Little Miss Ariana DiAntonio and Miss Ocean City Maddyn Randazzo pose with the famous crustacean.

Prior to the positive and pleasant prediction, the crab’s vitals were checked by Ocean City Firefighter and EMT Wallace Gilchrist.

“He is officially fit for duty,” Gilchrist exclaimed. “His pressure is good. His heart rate is awesome!”

The crowd erupted in cheers.

During the program, Martin Z. gave Nor’easter Nick some weather forecasting pointers — well, one to be precise.

In Ocean City the weather is always spectacular.

Both Martin Z. and his wife, Mollie, held up signs that reflected their view of the weather in their hometown.

“100 Percent Chance of Sun & Fun,” Martin Z.’s sign read.

Mollie’s said, “Rain in Ocean City is Only Liquid Sunshine.”

Martin Z. and Mollie Mollusk hold up signs showcasing Ocean City’s weather.

Other special guests included children from the city’s recreation program, “Little Rec’ers.”

The Cape Shore Sweet Adelines performed the National Anthem, and the String Band Novelties also serenaded the spectators.

Ocean City’s hermit crab mascot made his first, and what turned out to be historic, creep onto the Ninth Street Beach on a cool and windy March day in 1974.

Nor’easter Nick spoke about the history of the event that was created by the late Mark Soifer, who was head of public relations for the city for many years before retiring in 2016.

It was originally moved to May because of what is usually better weather.

But despite the gloomy weather Friday morning, Martin Z. once again made his prediction that summer will indeed arrive early.

The Cape Shore Sweet Adelines perform.