OCEAN CITY — Against the backdrop of preparations for one of the biggest events of the spring season, Maryland Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown last week toured the south end of the Boardwalk and extolled the virtues of the famous promenade’s economic impact on the entire state.
Last Friday afternoon, Brown toured the Boardwalk with Senator James Mathias, Greater Ocean City Chamber of Commerce executive director Melanie Pursel and a handful of resort business leaders on the eve of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. With decent weather, despite a gloomy fog that descended on the downtown area near the end, Brown got a tour of some cornerstone resort businesses.
The lieutenant governor got a tour of Trimper’s Rides, which has been locally owned and operated for 122 years, and received a demonstration of the candy making process at Dolle’s, which has been in business on the Boardwalk for 102 years. In between, Brown walked casually along interacting with the hundreds of visitors on the Boardwalk on a late April afternoon.
“The impact of tourism on job creation and economic growth in Ocean City, Worcester County and throughout the state of Maryland cannot be overstated,” he said. “These local businesses, some of which have been in operation for well over a century, are what make Ocean City so special and keep visitors coming to the shore year after year. Governor O’Malley and I are committed to making sure they have the support they need to continue their success during the upcoming vacation season and beyond.”
According to the chamber’s latest statistics for 2011, visitors to Ocean City spent $1.2 billion in real estate, transportation, food, shopping, lodging and entertainment last year, up 4.1-percent from the previous year. Tourism in Worcester accounts for over 52 percent of employment, or 9,063 jobs, in the county.