Adopt Your Beach Month Proclaimed

OCEAN CITY — The Ocean City Surf Club’s highly successful “Adopt Your Beach” program earned another accolade this week with an official proclamation from the Mayor and Council.

On Monday, the Mayor and Council designated April 2018 as Adopt Your Beach month in Ocean City, recognizing the success of the program under the guise of the Ocean City Surf Club in partnership with the town. In 2016, the Ocean City Surf Club, under the auspices of the Coastal Resources Legislative Committee, or Green Team, initiated the Adopt Your Beach program.

As the name implies, the program is a grassroots effort to have the private sector supplement the town’s beach-cleaning efforts. Under the program, a group or organization, or in some cases a business or a condominium association, literally adopts a section of beach and at various times of the year goes out with trash bags, rakes and other equipment to clean the beaches they have adopted.

The program was wildly successful from the outset two years ago and continues to grow. Currently, just a couple of beaches up and down the roughly 10-mile strand have not been adopted although the number is a moving target. As of this week, the area around 23rd Street to 25th Street remained open as well as the area around 119th Street to 120th Street.

On Monday, Council Secretary Mary Knight read the town’s proclamation into the record designating April as the official Adopt Your Beach month in the resort with Ocean City Surf Club President Tommy Vach, project coordinator Effie Cox, surf club mascot Gil and others on hand.

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“The Ocean City Surf Club is proud of the Adopt Your Beach program,” Vach said. “We think it’s a great program and a great partnership with the town of Ocean City and all of the citizens that get involved.”

Vach thanked the Mayor and Council for the proclamation, but reminded the elected officials the Adopt Your Beach program was a full-time operation.

“We’re happy to have April recognized as Adopt Your Beach month, but it’s really a program that goes on 12 months out of the year,” he said. “We’re still trying to get people to adopt beaches that haven’t been adopted because the more people that are involved, the more times the beaches are cleaned. We’re very happy with the partnership and will continue to grow Adopt Your Beach and continue to make Ocean City one of the cleanest beaches in the world.”

Vach said the Adopt Your Beach program supplements the town’s efforts to keep the beaches clean.

“We understand all the great work the city crews do in cleaning the beach, but we’re up there getting all of the nooks and crannies,” he said. “It makes a big difference for all of the residents and the tourists.”

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.