OCEAN CITY — OCtoberfest is back and bigger than ever this year.
This official town event provides activities for the whole family, including the family pet. Starting on Saturday, Oct. 18, the giant Halloween Beach Maze opens for adults and children to find their way through winding pathways on Ocean City’s beach while interacting with great Halloween props, whimsical characters and other special effects. This great beach experience is located just off the Boardwalk at N. Division Street and is free to all who dare enter this family-friendly attraction. The maze is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. October 18-19 and Oct. 24-25, weather permitting.
The Howl-O-Ween Pet Parade scampers onto the Boardwalk at N. Division Street on Oct. 18 with registration opening at 1 p.m. Pets, pet owners and pet lovers will find this gathering of costumed furry friends (or not so furry) to be a great time whether as a participant or spectator. Owners don’t forget your costumes. Participation is free. Parade begins at 2 p.m.
The spooktacular events continue as the calendar moves closer to Halloween with the Ocean City Recreation and Parks Department hosting a Halloween movie delight night on Friday, Oct. 24. Families can enjoy the classic family-friendly movie adventure, The Goonies, while taking in the beautiful setting at Sunset Park. The movie is free and public parking is available across the street. Food and beverages will be available to purchase on site including hot dogs, popcorn, candy, sodas and beverages. Guests should bring folding chairs and blankets to snuggle in for this great evening entertainment under the stars.
Before the beach maze comes back to life on Saturday, Oct. 25, the day kicks off with the Seaside 10. The 21st running of the 10-mile course, which takes advantage of Ocean City’s historic Boardwalk and Coastal Highway, is a fantastic way to gear up for the Halloween holiday. All are welcome to come wearing their most outrageous costumes. Entry fees for the 10 miler are $40 through Oct. 17and $50 thereafter. The 5K race entry fee is $25 through Oct. 17 and $30 thereafter. Both races originate in Ocean City’s Inlet Parking Lot and begin at 8 a.m. For more information, visit www.octrirunning.com for additional information on the run.
The Saturday festivities continue on Oct. 25 with the Great Pumpkin Race at N. Division Street beginning at 1 p.m. No matter your skills, this is the event for you. Get your pumpkin now – shape and size doesn’t matter. Pull your team together and carve it or paint it, add things to it and follow the race rules to make your entry for this enjoyable and hilarious event. Gravity is your motor. Whether they finish or not, it’s just good old straight line racing fun. Activities and heats begin at 1 p.m. Entry is free. Additional details and rules can be found at www.OCtoberfestMD.com.
The Great Pumpkin race is followed shortly thereafter by the Drive in Disguise. This event offers locals and guests alike the opportunity to decorate their automobile or business vehicle and join the convoy of festive Halloween rides for a rare drive down the Boardwalk. The Stephen Decatur High School band will join the parade, which will end with the decorated vehicles being judged in the Inlet Parking Lot by family, friends and the public. Bring your dollar bills to vote by placing a dollar in the container next to your favorite car. The vehicle with the most votes wins. Proceeds go to the Ocean City Downtown Association.
Live DJ music and local businesses will also be on site. Vehicles with OC license plates enter for free. All other participants are $25. Spectators, who wish to simply view the first-year parade, can make way to the Boardwalk between 4th Street and the Pier where you can watch from the concrete pad as the parade makes its way south. Visit the Downtown Association’s website at www.downtownassociation.net for more information about the Drive in Disguise.
Wrapping up the OCtoberfest activities is the ever-so-popular Halloween “Spook Out” Party at Northside Park on Oct. 26. Get your Halloween costume ready and join all the other goblins for this indoor trick or treat experience. Participants of all ages, including parents, will fill the Northside Park gym from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. for carnival games, arts and crafts, hayrides and snacks! Costume contests will be scheduled throughout the event. No preregistration is required and the price of admission is a bag of individually wrapped candy per child. Details are available at www.OceanCityMD.gov.
With numerous events and activities taking place this month, the ghouls and goblins in your life are sure to enjoy all that OCtoberfest has to offer. Check out www.OCocean.com for local business discounts available in town with a costume and without, including Fall Resaturant Week which takes place until Oct. 26 at participating restaurants.