Popular Spring Block Party Set for This Saturday

Ocean City’s “Mile-Long” Spring Block Party offers fun, food, entertainment, over 350 talented crafters, plus shopping specialties from 100 Asbury Ave. stores. The popular Festival is set for Sat., May 3rd   from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. It extends from 5th to 14th Streets in the downtown and is produced by the Downtown Merchants Association.

The event began over 30 years ago. It first covered only two City blocks. It quickly gained notoriety and soon extended through the entire, downtown commercial area.

One of its first features was a Greek Food Festival that will be back for the 30th time this year. It is located at the corner of 9th and Asbury Ave. and features Gyros, Spinach Pie, sweets and other specialties. It raises funds for the Holy Trinity Church of Egg Harbor Township.

Entertainment is varied and spread throughout the Block Party area from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free pony rides and the balloon magic of Chad Juros will be available at the Tabernacle Grounds, 6th and Asbury Ave.

The Big Daddy Band will be at 6th St. and the Robert Boney Band at 7th St. Singer Tony De Luca will be at 9th St. and the Tidal Wave Band at 10th St. The Bubba Mac Blues Band will perform at 13 St. and singer Keith Hickman at 14th St.

Free parking will be available on West and Central Avenues. After the Block Party, stroll the Boardwalk. Boardwalk Merchants feature table sales during the weekend as will Asbury Avenue Merchants.

Gillian’s Wonderland Pier will be open from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Block Party Weekend, and Playland amusements will be available from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Sat. and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.

This is an ideal opportunity to enjoy the pleasures of both the downtown and boardwalk. For information, call 1-800-Beach-NJ or (609) 391-0240.

ROCK FEST AT MUSIC PIER: Here’s your opportunity to enjoy some great original Rock Music by local bands. Ocean City’s Eddie Shiffler will bring “Green Language,” the group he fronts, to the Music Pier for a Rock Festival on May 9 from 6 to 10:30 p.m. The Band will perform its new album “Of the Birds” and Shiffler will sing select songs from his 18 year solo career. Bands from Philadelphia and New York will also be featured in the program.

The new album will be available in the form of download cards and limited issue CDs. Local artists will show their work. Admission is $10 at the door. Call (347) 813-5090 or access www.reverbnation.com/greenlanguage.

(May 3) The Cystic Fibrosis Great Strides Walk is scheduled for 11 a.m., leaving from the Sixth Street Practice Field. Registration begins 10 a.m. Call (610) 325-6011 or visit www.cff.org.

(May 3) Ocean City’s Got Talent: See talented performers from throughout the region compete in talent competitions including vocals, dance, instrumental, drama, comedy, etc. Contestants of all ages will be vying for honors. Event is open to the public starting 7:30 p.m. at the Music Pier, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace. Tickets are $10 with proceeds benefitting the Greater Ocean City Theatre Company. For tickets call (609) 525-9300 or visit www.ocnj.us/boxoffice.

(May 6) The Ocean City High School Instrumental Department will present its annual Spring Concert, Wed., May 6 at 7 p.m. at the Bill and Nancy Hughes Performing Arts Center. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for students. The Concert Band, Wind Ensemble and Strings programs will perform. Senior Band members will be recognized. Tickets will be sold at the door.

(May 10) The Cape May County Coastal Food Drive: Letter carriers from Ocean City will be collecting non-perishable food items for the Ocean City Community Food Cupboard. Please leave donations by your mailbox. You can also drop off food at the Ocean City Post Office, 859 Ocean Ave., M-F 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. or the Ocean City Community Food Cupboard, 501 E. 8th St., M-F 1 p.m.-3 p.m.

(May 17) The American Heart Assn. Heart Walk: Registration begins 9 a.m. at the Sports and Civic Center, 6 and Boardwalk, walk starts 10:30 a.m.

(May 17) Arturo O’Farill Latin Jazz Big Band-The Grammy award winning Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra led by pianist, composer, director Arturo O’Farill, brings together the drama of big band jazz, the culture of Latin American Music, and 18 of the world’s most accomplished jazz musicians.  The Band’s “Song for Chico” won the Grammy for best Jazz Album of the Year in 2008 and the group has received many Grammy nominations.

Show time is 7 p.m. at the Music Pier, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace. Ticket Prices are $20 for Somers Point Jazz Society members, $25 for non members until May 15. Purchase online at www.spjazz.org/shop or by mail from the Somers Point Jazz Society, PO Box 329, Somers Point, N.J. 08244. Tickets will be available at door, Society members, $25, non-members $30. Sponsored by Cape Bank. Call (609) 927-6677 or email info@spjazz.org.

(May18) OCNJ Triathlon/Duathlon: ¼ mile Pool Swim, 2M Run/16M Bike/2M Run. Plus a Kid’s Course 1/8 mile swim, 1m run/8m bike/1m run.  Pool Swim starts 6 a.m.-8 a.m. Run/Bike/Run starts 9 a.m. $50 Tri/Du. $25 Kids course. For information, call (609) 525-9317 or access www.ocnj.us/Race-Events.

(May 23) BUSINESS PERSON’S PLUNGE, unlocks the Ocean for the Season. Business persons, mascots, various groups march into the Ocean to the Ocean City High School’s rendition of Pomp and Circumstance. Many plunge into the waves in full dress attire, others in their company’s uniforms. Ringmaster/Realtor John Walton leads the contingents into the Ocean presenting the Stars and Stripes. All are welcome to participate or watch. Be there. March starts at noon. Participants arrive by 11:30 a.m. Starts at the Moorlyn Terrace Beach by the Music Pier,  Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace. Call  (609) 338-7667 for information.

The MISS NEW JERSEY PAGEANT invites organizations, bands and individuals to participate in the Miss New Jersey Parade, that precedes the Pageant, on Wed., June 11th at 7 p.m. on the Ocean City Boardwalk. High School Marching Bands, cheerleaders, pep squads, dance groups, scout troops, entertainers and business and civic organizations with floats are invited and should email or call Karen Mahar (609) 626-1176 or kmahar3@mac.com. There is no entry fee. All entry forms must be completed by Fri., May 23.

THIS JUST IN: The annual Esther Weil Student Music Competition will be held at the Music Pier on Tues., May 6 from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Sixteen outstanding students from local high schools will compete for thousands of dollars in prizes. Admission is free. Program honors Ocean City’s late beloved humanitarian and music benefactor, Esther Weil, and is sponsored by Friends of the Ocean City Pop’s Scheible Encore Society.

NOTE: In the event of rain on Thursday, May 1, the Martin Z. Mollusk ceremony will be held inside the Music Pier starting 11 a.m. Call (609) 525-9300 for information.



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