Rainy Day Activities in Ocean City

When the rain starts falling in Ocean City, your beach day plans will likely have changed. With COVID-19 restrictions still in place, dining in at your favorite local restaurant or taking part in certain activities are not possible now. But, don’t worry! There’s still plenty to do on a rainy day in Ocean City!

Order Takeout for Any (or Every) Meal

Dining outdoors might not be possible today, or any other rainy day, but fortunately plenty of Ocean City restaurants offer takeout. Some have always offered takeout, whereas others have added takeout options in response to recent dining restrictions due to the pandemic.

Whether you want to order out for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even a midday snack, you have so many options available to you throughout the island, including some new spots you might not have tried yet:

If you’re wondering if your favorite Ocean City restaurant offers takeout, simply give them a call or check out their social media pages for more information.  And if you’d rather not head outside in the rain to pick it up, many Ocean City restaurants will deliver the food right to your door!

Buy Some Indoor Games for the Family

Indoor games, such as board games, are fun anytime and anywhere, but especially on a rainy day down the shore. No matter how old or young your family members are, you’re sure to find some fun board games, card games, and other indoor activities to enjoy with the whole family. You can visit Hoy’s 5 & 10 and Stainton’s for game options and you can have fun indoors or on your covered porch until the rain stops.

Grab Your Rain Gear and Go Shopping

Although you can’t make it to the beach on a rainy day, you can indulge in some serious shopping along Asbury Avenue. Grab your rain gear and walk along Asbury Avenue, stopping into stores that pique your interest. Whether you want to explore the clothing and home decor items at B & B, create your own sandals at SunSmiles Sandals and Beachwear, or buy some eye-catching accessories at Seagrass Boutique, there’s something for everyone on Asbury Avenue.

Don’t let a little rain stop the fun in Ocean City! Enjoy the day!

Ocean City Farmers Market Returns for 2020 Season on July 1

In just a few days the Ocean City Farmers Market will be open for business! Starting July 1, the Ocean City Farmers Market will take place every Wednesday through September 9, from 8 a.m.–1 p.m.

The farmers market will be located in its usual spot on the Ocean City Tabernacle grounds between 5th Street and 6th Street along Asbury Avenue.

Visit the various farm stands for your favorite produce and flowers and be sure to stop by the other stands for Ocean City Farmers Market favorites, such as zesty hot sauce, pickles and olives, and baked good items. The craft vendors will offer items ranging from handmade soaps and bath products to creative outside decor, plus so much more.

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Ocean City Farmers Market participants will include A.T. Buzby Farm, Doc Pickle, The Soup Bar, and many other farms and vendors!

With the current health situation at hand, farmers market attendees are required to wear masks for their safety and the safety of others.

Stop by the Ocean City Farmers Market on July 1 and every Wednesday this summer to support local farmers and vendors and purchase items you’re sure to put to good use!

Miniature Golf is Open with Outdoor Dining and In-Store Shopping Coming Soon in Ocean City

Great news! Miniature golf courses are now open in Ocean City. Many individuals have been eagerly anticipating the opening of these family fun-filled courses. Now the time has come to choose your putter and ball and engage in some friendly competition out in the open air.

And, as if this news isn’t exciting enough, get ready for outdoor dining and in-store shopping to begin in Ocean City on Monday, June 15. Certain restrictions will be in place for the safety and welfare of the employees, shoppers, and diners, but this is an excellent start to getting the businesses open after the COVID-19 shutdowns.

Restaurants that have the space for outdoor dining will be able to offer this service. As for stores, in-store shopping will be allowed to begin on June 15. Masks will be required when indoors and there will likely be certain maximum occupancy requirements for in-store shopping in order to maintain safe social distancing.

Contact your favorite restaurants to see if they’ll be offering outdoor dining and call your favorite stores to see what the procedure will be for in-store shopping.

Today is the perfect day to head out to enjoy a game of mini-golf and then get ready for outdoor dining and in-store shopping on Monday, June 15!

Full Weekly Rentals Start Today in Ocean City

Starting today, Ocean City will be welcoming in the Saturday-to-Saturday crowd for full weekly rentals. Although rentals less than 30 days were allowed to begin starting June 1, many weekly rentals operate on a Saturday-to-Saturday basis, so today will be the first group of Ocean City weekly vacationers.

Since there are still some restrictions in place for Ocean City residents and visitors, the following provides some information on what’s currently happening in Ocean City:

Dining

Many Ocean City-bound vacationers can’t wait to head down the shore for a taste of South Jersey dining offerings. From funnel cake to fresh seafood entrees, Ocean City restaurants and food vendors help to satisfy all the culinary cravings for residents and visitors alike.

Here are some of the guidelines currently in place for Ocean City dining:

  • Takeout/delivery available from restaurants and boardwalk vendors that offer it.
  • Outdoor dining allowed at restaurants beginning June 15.
  • All restaurants are allowed to be open during normal business hours.
  • No dine-in services are available yet.

Face masks are required when entering an establishment to pick up your food order. All individuals are encouraged to practice social distancing. In addition, each restaurant and food vendor may have their own restrictions in place.

Shopping

Governor Murphy recently gave the green light for certain “non-essential businesses” to open their doors for curbside pickup, which includes retail stores. In response, many Ocean City retail shops are offering this option which provides a way for individuals to get the items they want while supporting local businesses at the same time. The statewide opening plan goes further to note the date of June 15 for retail stores to start allowing limited in-person shopping.

Activities

If you’re wondering what recreational activities are allowed in Ocean City at this time, here’s the current list:

  • The beach is open for sunbathing, swimming, recreation, and fishing. Lifeguards are on duty. Beach tags are required and available to purchase at multiple locations. Discounted seasonal beach tags are on sale for $20 until June 30. Weekly and daily tags are also available.
  • The boardwalk is open for biking, walking, and exercise. Social distancing is required and masks are optional. However, many boardwalk vendors require masks when approaching their storefronts, so be sure to have your mask handy so you can indulge in boardwalk culinary treats and “curbside” shopping.
  • Amusement centers remain closed.
  • The Ocean City Municipal Golf Course is open with some restrictions in place.
  • The Ocean City Skate Park is open with restrictions.
  • The Ocean City Aquatic and Fitness Center remains closed.
  • Recreational fields are open, as are tennis and pickleball courts.
  • Fishing boat charters are available.

As you get ready for your Ocean City vacation, remember that the refreshing ocean air is always there to greet you. There may be some restrictions in place that make your vacation a little bit different than past years, but the beautiful Ocean City memories you’ll make with your family will still be as abundant as ever.

While on vacation, be sure to enjoy the takeout/delivery dining and curbside pickup options from local restaurants and stores. Not only will you be getting exceptional food items and products, but you’ll be supporting these local businesses that look forward to your return each and every year!

Happening This Memorial Day Weekend in Ocean City

As we head into Memorial Day weekend, it’s fair to say that this year’s festivities will be a little bit different from past years. But, there are still plenty of ways to enjoy the weekend, albeit with a few changes in place. From takeout dining options to curbside pickup at your favorite Ocean City businesses, here are some must-visit spots to put on your list this Memorial Day weekend:

Dining To-Go

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From pizza slices to dinner entrees to sweet treats, you’ll find a lot of options to choose from when you order takeout from the following Ocean City eateries:

  • Bob’s Grill: Offering takeout menu items, hot donuts, and bike and surrey rentals
  • Roma Pizza: $3.99 special includes one plain pizza slice and small fountain drink (toppings extra); $5 off any pizza pie; other menu items available for takeout
  • OC Surf Cafe: Open for takeout, Friday-Monday, 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Sack O’ Subs: Open for takeout and offering regular menu plus daily specials
  • Randazzo’s: Offering takeout/free delivery; Try their delicious garlic knots this weekend!
  • Jon and Patty’s: Open for takeout and delivery; Try their new online ordering system for easy ordering; Open daily, 8 a.m.-7 p.m.
  • Donny’s Family Kitchen: Open for takeout, lunch and dinner, 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.
  • Kessel’s Korner: Open for takeout; Get a delicious milkshake and sandwich to-go!
  • Spadafora’s: Open 11:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m.; You can order online for takeout, request delivery, or visit the store for curbside pickup and in-store retail purchases (for in-store purchases, there will be a one-in, one-out system in place for proper social distancing); Be sure to try their lobster mac and steamer pots!
  • Yoasis: Open at 9 a.m. daily for healthy and delicious treats
  • The Hula Restaurant: Open and offering regular menu items plus tons of great specials, such as the Alaskan snow crab and Thai BBQ scallops options
  • Topsail Steamer: Order a seafood steamer pot to cook up and enjoy at home
  • Cathy’s 14th Street Bakery: Cathy’s 14th Street Bakery is open and ready to serve up fabulous donuts and sweet treats this Memorial Day weekend
  • Dot’s Pastry Shop: Dot’s is open every day at 7 a.m. Order the day prior for curbside pickup or visit the store for your favorites each day (three people in the store at a time)
  • Pork Island Grill: Who’s craving barbecue this Memorial Day weekend? If so, visit Pork Island Grill and order all of your favorite culinary dishes for takeout
  • Ward’s Pastry: From butter cake to creative cookies, Ward’s Pastry has your sweet treat needs covered this weekend
  • Mallon’s: Known for their famous sticky buns, you know where to go when you want sweet and delicious sticky buns in Ocean City

Shopping with Curbside Pickup

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Local shops on the boardwalk and Asbury Avenue are offering curbside pickup for all your Memorial Day weekend shopping needs. Here are some stores that are ready, willing, and able to answer the call this weekend:

  • Peace of Wood: Peace of Wood will be open this weekend for curbside pickup, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. They’re also offering a new, extremely cool item which the whole family is sure to love: Paint Jams to Go! $15 per kit provides you with everything you need to make some creative masterpieces in the comfort of your own home. Shop online and curbside pickup the same day.
  • B&B: Offering curbside pickup for all your clothing and home decor needs
  • 7th Street Surf Shop: Offering curbside pickup and FaceTime shopping appointments
  • Ocean Treasures: Open Memorial Day weekend for curbside shopping on the boardwalk
  • Hearth and Sole: Hearth and Sole has everything you need to make your MDW festivities complete! All items are available for curbside pickup. Call the store for an appointment to shop.
  • SunSmiles Sandals and Beachwear: Get ready for summer by ordering a new swimsuit and sandals from SunSmiles. Curbside pickup is available throughout the weekend

Important Details

Now that you have some restaurants and shops to visit this Memorial Day weekend, here are a few additional bits of information to know:

  • All amusements and arcades are still closed.
  • Dine-in options still unavailable.
  • Beach tags are now on sale online and in person at the following locations: City Hall, Music Pier box office window, Route 52 Causeway Welcome Center, Henry Knight Building, and 34th Street Information Center.
  • Beach tags required for beachgoers ages 12+, June 6-Sept. 7, 2020.

Most importantly, as we head into Memorial Day weekend, it’s important to remember what this weekend is truly about and that’s remembering our military members who lost their lives fighting for this country. Thank you for your service and making the ultimate sacrifice while serving.

Now Open in Ocean City: Donny’s Family Kitchen

Another new restaurant just opened its doors in Ocean City: Donny’s Family Kitchen!

Located at 738 Wesley Avenue, in the spot formerly occupied by Romeo’s Pizza, Donny’s Family Kitchen is now open for takeout and free delivery. The new restaurant is currently serving lunch and dinner items, including the following:

  • Traditional chicken wings
  • Specialty pizzas, including white Neapolitan, meat lovers, buffalo chicken, veggie, the always-favorite cheese pizza, and more
  • Stromboli
  • Calzones
  • Philly cheesesteaks
  • Burgers
  • Subs
  • Ravioli
  • Chicken parmagiana
  • Linguini with chicken and broccoli
  • And so much more!

The current hours at Donny’s Family Kitchen are 11:30 a.m.–8 p.m. daily. From the looks of the menu, it appears breakfast items will also be an option as the season progresses, so be on the lookout for updated hours and menu inclusions!

Show your support for the newest Ocean City eatery today! Place your takeout or delivery order by calling 609-391-0009 or, for iPhone users, download the Heartland Guest App on your mobile device and add Donny’s Family Kitchen for easy ordering.

 

Seasonal and New Spots Opening Soon in Ocean City

With Memorial Day quickly approaching and full access to Ocean City beaches taking place on May 16, many restaurants and stores are opening their doors. They want to be ready, willing, and able to offer takeout and delivery services to residents and visitors at the start of the season. In addition to seasonal businesses opening, there are also some new spots you’re going to want to check out.

Here’s a list of the seasonal and new stores and restaurants opening the doors for takeout, delivery, and curbside pickup:

Now’s the perfect time to start thinking about what takeout items you’re going to enjoy first!

What’s Open, What’s Closed in Ocean City Amid COVID-19 Concerns

*UPDATE: Gov. Murphy states all New Jersey bars, restaurants, movie theaters, gyms, and casinos to close at 8 p.m. tonight, March 16. Essential businesses, such as grocery stores and gas stations, can stay open past 8 p.m. Non-essential businesses must close by 8 p.m. daily. Restaurants can offer takeout/delivery services.

As COVID-19 concerns and cases grow, government officials, business owners, organizations, and individuals are taking necessary precautions to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Some institutions are being instructed by the government to close, while others are taking the initiative to close their doors to help stop the spread of the virus. On the other hand, businesses are keeping their doors open so that individuals can have access to food and other items.

*Updated 3/17*

Here’s a list of some current businesses and entities in Ocean City that are open, closed, or canceling/postponing events:

Open:

Closed/Canceled/Postponed:

Event Cancellations:

  • OC Con Comic and Memorabilia Show
  • Girls Weekend
  • Great Egg Hunts and all other Easter events, including the Easter Sunrise Service
  • Doo Dah Parade
  • Mr. Mature America Pageant
  • Sports Memorabilia Show
  • All other shows/events through the end of April

This is just a starter list and includes some of the openings/closings/cancellations. The list will be updated on a continual basis as changes are noted. The best bet is to always call prior to heading to your favorite Ocean City shop or restaurant to make sure hours of operation haven’t recently changed. And please feel free to add additions in the comments below.

Most importantly, thank you to all who are helping the public during this uncertain time (and always), including first responders, medical professionals, shop/restaurant owners and employees, and others who are lending a hand overall. Be safe and stay well, Ocean City friends!

 

New Businesses to Open Soon in Ocean City

Every year, new businesses pop up in Ocean City, to the delight of locals and tourists alike. From new dining options to shopping spots galore, there’s always something new and exciting in the works in Ocean City. Here’s what’s coming to town soon:

DriftSpaces

With the number of remote workers increasing, coworking spaces are becoming even more popular. Fortunately, soon-to-open DriftSpaces on the second floor of 956 Asbury Avenue will meet the demand of telecommuters who want a collaborative working environment where they can get the job done in a productive workspace. DriftSpaces plans to open on March 6 for tours and they’ll be accepting ten launch members to be the first to put the DriftSpaces workspace to good use! 

Pork Island Grill

As announced back in November, Pork Island Grill will be opening its doors at the corner of 34th Street and Asbury Avenue. Once open, you can expect delicious BBQ culinary items of a wide array, from smoked brisket to flavorful ribs and so much more. The restaurant is still on track for a grand opening in the beginning of April. In the meantime, check out their Facebook and Instagram pages for some photos of what you’ll soon be able to enjoy at Pork Island Grill. And, if you’re looking for employment in the restaurant industry, Pork Island Grill is hiring.

Ron Jon Surf Shop

Ron Jon Surf Shop will be opening its second New Jersey location, this one in Ocean City. With an opening date still TBD, we do know that the new location will be situated at the corner of 8th Street and Asbury Avenue. Ron Jon Surf Shop has its flagship location in Ship Bottom, New Jersey, as well as other retail locations along the East Coast. The new Ocean City store will sell surfboards, clothing, accessories, and other items found at Ron Jon Surf Shop locations throughout the U.S.

These are just three of the upcoming openings we can expect in the coming months, and there are certain to be more on the horizon!

Save the Date: Girls Weekend 2020 in Downtown Ocean City

With only 100 days left to go until Memorial Day, it’s a good time to talk about springtime Ocean City events. One popular event that brings in the crowds each year is the Girls Weekend event. This year’s Girls Weekend will unfold April 3–5 and include offerings such as a fashion show, shopping deals, hotel packages, dining options, and more.

Here are some events being held during Girls Weekend 2020:

Fashion Show Kickoff Event (April 3)

The Girls Weekend Fashion Show has been so popular in prior years that it’s being moved to a new, larger location this year. Purchase your tickets and reserve a seat for the fashion show taking place at PLAAY Fitness and Yoga at 910 Asbury Avenue. The show will start at 7 p.m. and feature a display of fashions available at local Ocean City boutiques.

The cost is $20 per person and includes light bites offered by local restaurants during the event. Tickets are required to attend, and this show sells out each year, so be sure to get your tickets early. Tickets can be purchased online and at various area locations, including the Route 52 Causeway Welcome Center, City Hall Welcome Center, Ta-Dah (1040 Asbury Ave.), Making Waves (836 Asbury Ave.), 7th Street Surf Shop (720 Asbury Ave.), and the Sneaker Shop (704 Asbury Ave.).

Accommodation Deals and Packages for Girls Weekend 2020

Many local hotels and B&Bs will offer special deals and lodging packages for Girls Weekend 2020. Here are some of the latest deals being offered:

  • The Flanders Hotel: Reserve a stay for the night of Friday, April 3, or Saturday, April 4, and receive the following: early check-in with complimentary gift upon arrival; overnight stay in a deluxe one-bedroom suite; a 30-minute leg and foot massage or 30-minute mini-facial with free product samples from Divine Images Salon and Spa; a coupon for 10% off at The Shoppes at Flanders; breakfast in Emily’s Ocean Room; and, late check-out. The cost is $169 per person plus tax and gratuity (cost based on double occupancy).
  • Port-O-Call: Enjoy a two-night stay at the Port-O-Call for Girls Weekend 2020. The package includes two-night deluxe accommodations, dinner at a local restaurant, breakfast both mornings at Adelene, and your choice of a relaxing spa service including a 25-minute facial provided by a local salon, 25-minute massage by Blue Garden Wellness (6th floor of the hotel), or manicure or mini-pedicure provided by a local salon. Prices start at $295 per person (based on double occupancy; includes taxes and hotel dining gratuity).
  • Northwood Inn Bed and Breakfast: Stay for two nights and get the second night 50% off. Plus, enjoy complimentary pizza and drinks on Friday night.
  • Biscayne Suites: Enjoy two nights of accommodations for $239 plus tax and you’ll also have access to a late 6 p.m. checkout, so you can fully take advantage of the entire weekend. Just mention “Girls Weekend” when calling for reservations.
  • Inn the Gardens Bed and Breakfast: Book your Girls Weekend stay and you’ll get $25 off the second night at Inn the Gardens Bed and Breakfast.
  • Ocean City Mansion: Book your April 3–5 stay and receive two complimentary beach tags for the summer of 2020. Just mention “Girls Weekend” when calling to reserve your room.
  • Impala Island Inn: Stay at the Impala Island Inn for $160 for the weekend, plus tax. Just mention “Girls Weekend” to snag this deal!
  • Wild Dunes Inn: Book a weekend stay at the Wild Dunes Inn for $190 for the weekend, plus tax. You’ll be able to get this deal when you mention “Girls Weekend” when reserving.

Shopping Deals, Exercise Classes, and More!

Besides the Girls Weekend Fashion Show and fabulous lodging deals, Girls Weekend 2020 attendees will enjoy extraordinary sales at local shops and boutiques, dining specials at local restaurants, exercise classes, spa specials, craft projects and demos, and so much more!

Keep checking back to OCNJ Happenings Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages for additional information as Girls Weekend 2020 draws closer and make your reservations today!