Fireworks Planned To Help Mark Sunfest Anniversary

OCEAN CITY – The third summer of the OC Beach Lights series went off without a hitch, despite some cancelations due to wind, but the good news is the shows have been rescheduled to accompany the 40th anniversary of Sunfest next weekend.

This summer T.E.A.M Productions’ weekly laser light show and fireworks displays returned to Ocean City for the third year in a row.

Over the years the event’s schedule has evolved to where this summer T.E.A.M Productions was offering triple the amount of shows than in the first year.

In the first year OC Beach Lights, a seven-minute laser light show, orbiting from a five-story tall inflatable sphere featuring a visual laser, lighting, video and audio production took place on Sunday nights from Memorial Day through Labor Day at North Division Street. The same show occurred three times a night at 9:30, 10 and 10:30 p.m.

In addition, Monday and Tuesday nights following the 4th of July through the end of August a fireworks display was held on the beach downtown at 10 p.m.

Last year OC Beach Lights continued to be held on Sunday nights downtown, except each show was different, and the downtown fireworks display continued twice a week. However, a weekly fireworks display was added to Northside Park.

This summer OC Beach Lights was held again on Sunday nights with the three different shows following a theme of patriotism, a music anthology and movie theme songs. However, this year additional special effects were added, including a pyrotechnic component.

“We added a little extra pizzazz,” Bob Rothermel of T.E.A.M Productions said. “When the flames go and then with the fireworks in the background, the crowd always go ‘oh and ah.’ It is really what they look for … It was very well received again. The crowds were just huge. Ten thousand people is not a wild estimate.”

According to Rothermel, crowds for OC Beach Lights were on par with past years, if not more, estimating 17,000 to 20,000 people in attendance between the three laser light shows every night.

Also this summer, the two weekly fireworks displays were held downtown. Additionally, the weekly Sundaes in the Park held on Sunday evenings at Northside Park were concluded with a fireworks display.

“This year ended up being a little more challenging because we ended up with a lot more wind, so we had to get creative with our fireworks displays,” Rothermel said.

Labor Day weekend was the scheduled finale for the event series. Due to canceled fireworks shows this summer and the cancelation of Sunday’s laser light show both due to wind, Ocean City’s 40th Anniversary of Sunfest next weekend will be accompanied with two events.

Sunfest will be held, Thursday, Sept. 18 through Sunday, Sept. 30. On the opening night, a fireworks show will kick off at 10 p.m. on the beach downtown and the conclusion of Sunfest on Sunday will conclude with OC Beach Lights.

As far as T.E.A.M Production’s OC Beach Lights and weekly firework displays returning to Ocean City next summer, it is still in the air.

“We certainly hope so,” Rothermel said. “I think the laser light shows have become an iconic offering for the beach. If it is true communities like Ocean City are trying to attract the vacationing public, then you need to have those value added events that make the town a little more special than those two hours up or down the road.”