BERLIN — Maryland Coastal Bays Program and the Ocean Pines Association are hosting the 2nd Ocean Pines Bay Day, a free public event, on Sunday, Sept. 8 from 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at White Horse Park.
This is a continuing collaborative conservation campaign between the Maryland Coastal Bays Program and the Ocean Pines Association to improve the health of waterways shouldering Ocean Pines.
The family event aims to capture the interest of all age groups through hands-on environmental activities, free boat tours and kayaking, live music by the George and Pat Bikenki Duo, a bay-friendly garden demonstration, and live animal exhibits.
“Area residents take pride in their coastal community, which is why the Ocean Pines Association has partnered with The Maryland Coastal Bays Program to promote awareness to our residents in Ocean Pines on how to make a positive impact in the Coastal Bays, especially the St. Martins River,” said Ocean Pines Recreation and Parks Program Supervisor Debbie Donahue. “The event is a great way to learn more about how you can make slight changes to your watershed area that over time can make an impact on improving the bay areas.”
The event comes with multiple vendors, hands on projects, fun facts, interactive things to do and the coolest thing is the 56-foot inflatable whale that will be on location in the gym of the Community Center that is accessible to walk through, all of which are learning tools that are fun for children and adults.
“We are thrilled to collaborate with Ocean Pines for a second year on this event. When Coastal Bays and the Association first sat down to discuss event goals, we all agreed that we wanted there to be something for everybody. People should feel welcome to stay all day, learning from environmental organizations, taking a boat tour of the St. Martin, and participating in various hands-on activities,” said Liz Wist, education coordinator at Maryland Coastal Bays Program.
New this year is a do-it-yourself workshop pavilion, garden demonstration, and live interactive artwork. The workshop pavilion will include on-site construction of bird, bat, and bee homes, seed bomb creation, and fish print shirts.
Conservation partners from Assateague State Park, Pocomoke River State Park, and Chincoteague Bay Field Station, and the Ward Museum are just a few of the 30+ exhibitors that will be in attendance. They will offer event participants the opportunity to meet animals like birds, fish, and snakes.
The National Aquarium will have a 56-foot inflatable sei whale on display, giving visitors access to walk through the life-size replica.
The first 400 attendees will receive a canvas bag that was hand-painted by students from Cedar Chapel, Berlin Intermediate, Showell Elementary, Stephen Decatur Middle, Pocomoke Middle and Elementary, Snow Hill Middle and Little Dreamers Wellness Center.
“We are excited to be continuing the momentum that we began last year by offering even more for watershed residents to explore in the 2019 Bay Day”, said Frank Piorko, executive director of Maryland Coastal Bays Program.
Ocean Pines Bay Day will continue to serve as a catalyst to a year-long campaign to raise awareness and educate residents on environmentally friendly practices that could enhance the quality of local waterways.
“During the past year since the inaugural Bay Day event, we have had a lot of interaction with the Ocean Pines Association, and area residents on improving the watershed habitat and water quality of the St. Martin River. We hope the positive trend continues,” said Piorko.