August 2015 .pdf

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Title: A LOcal’s Look: THE TOP 5 THINGS TO ALWAYS DO IN The OCEAN CITY
Author: Rhiannon Smith

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A LOCAL’S LOOK: THE TOP 5 THINGS TO ALWAYS DO IN THE OCEAN CITY AREA

AUGUST 2015

A Local’s
Look:
The Top 5
Things to Always
Do in the Ocean
City Area
Feeling overwhelmed by the sights and sounds of OC? Jay’s insider’s take on this vibrant
community will leave you and your family counting the days until your next visit.

ARTICLE BY: JAY PHILLIPS

W

henever I speak to families and friends visiting or searching for a new
home in the Ocean City area, they almost inevitably ask me: “What do
the locals do?” Being a third generation native to Delmarva, I’ve seen
the ins and outs of what it has to offer, but I always seem to go back to the same
“must-do” attractions that my family and I frequent each year.

#5 - The Pocomoke River
The Pocomoke River, essentially an arm of the
Chesapeake Bay, stretches approximately 66 miles
from southern Delaware through southeastern
Maryland. It is touted as one of the deepest rivers
for its width in the world.
Lined by such beautiful and scenic foliage as the
Loblolly Pine, Red Maple and Bald Cypress trees, it
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A LOCAL’S LOOK: THE TOP 5 THINGS TO ALWAYS DO IN THE OCEAN CITY AREA

AUGUST 2015

is one of Delmarva’s local treasures, and a must
see for all those travelers with an adventurous
side.
I advise that you bring a camera to capture shots
of the local wildlife (which is abundant along the
Pocomoke), and a fishing pole if you want to try
and hook a large mouth bass or crappie fish.
If you somehow forgot your canoe, you can easily
(and inexpensively) rent a canoe, paddle board,
or kayak at The Pocomoke River Canoe
Company in Snow Hill, Maryland. The kind folks at the Canoe Company will be happy to take you
up the river and drop you off, so that you can ride the current or the wind back to the bridge in
Snow Hill. Be sure to call and reserve your kayak if you’re planning a trip, as two-person kayaks go
quickly during the busier times of day.
While you’re in Snow Hill, if you need a quiet and relaxing place to stay, The River House is the
perfect place to spend the weekend.

#4 – The Chincoteague Pony Swim
Made famous by Marguerite Henry's Misty of
Chincoteague, the Chincoteague Pony Swim is
an annual event, held in July on Assateague
Island. Currently as many as 50,000 visitors
gather on the last Wednesday in July (date
depending on tidal patterns) to watch mounted
riders bring the Virginia herd from Assateague
and swim them across the channel to
Chincoteague Island.
At “slack tide” (a short period where no
movement occurs either way in the tidal
stream), a group of Chincoteague Volunteer
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A LOCAL’S LOOK: THE TOP 5 THINGS TO ALWAYS DO IN THE OCEAN CITY AREA

AUGUST 2015

Firefighters known as The Saltwater Cowboys
swim the ponies to Chincoteague, where the
ponies are then auctioned off, usually getting
donated back to the island.
The fire department, which owns the
Chincoteague Island pony herd, supports itself
with the proceeds of the annual Pony Auction.
We enjoy taking our boat out, and anchoring up in
the channel. It’s the best view you can get if you’re
a local – the ponies swim right in front of you!
If you’re looking for something to do after the Pony Swim, bring the family down to check out the
annual Chincoteague Volunteer Fireman's Carnival, which offers rides, games, raffles, and plenty
of good local food (the oyster fritters are a must-try).

#3 – The Grove Market
Escape the buzz of the tourist attractions in
Ocean City and grab a gourmet meal (with
down-home décor) at The Grove Market in
Bishopville, Maryland. This cash-only restaurant
and smoke house is the best place to
experience the authentic Eastern Shore vibe
within a stone’s throw of the beaches. I
personally remember taking our catches of the
day to The Grove, from local tuna to marlin,
where we would trade half of our catch, and getting the other half of it smoked for us in return.
With a constantly changing menu and a vivacious staff, this distinctive spot is a local’s best-kept
secret. I highly recommend making an advance reservation, as seats go very quickly.

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A LOCAL’S LOOK: THE TOP 5 THINGS TO ALWAYS DO IN THE OCEAN CITY AREA

AUGUST 2015

#2 – The Salisbury Zoo
Less than 45 minutes from the beach, you’ll find
one of the most fascinating and family friendly
attractions on the Eastern Shore – The Salisbury
Zoological Park. With over 12 acres of parks and
wildlife, its collection of over 100 animals
includes everything from American alligators,
flamingos, red wolves, two-toed sloths, jaguars,
macaws, spider monkeys, and the locally
renowned spectacled bears. The zoo was also
once home to the world’s oldest-known captive-born spectacled bear.
This little zoo has a lot to offer, from The Beastro to the Ocelot Spot Gift Shop. It’s also a great place
to have a picnic in the shade, feed the ducks along the Wicomico River – or take the kids to Ben’s
Red Swings just outside the front gates for hours of fun for them (and relaxation for you)!
The best part? The Salisbury Zoo is one of only a few Association of Zoos & Aquariums-accredited
zoos that do not charge an entrance fee – that’s right; it’s absolutely free.

#1 – Furnace Town
If you’re looking for something little more “off the
beaten path”, look no further. Initially constructed
in 1869, and located just five miles north of Snow
Hill, Maryland, the Old Furnace Town Heritage
Museum uses a “living history format” with live
demonstrations to re-create a vanished 19thcentury community. Get an inside look at what
local life was like in the 1800’s, by watching
talented artisans create intricate works of art by
hand, from fabric weaving and printmaking to iron
and woodwork – and admission is also free.
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A LOCAL’S LOOK: THE TOP 5 THINGS TO ALWAYS DO IN THE OCEAN CITY AREA

AUGUST 2015

In October, Furnace Town hosts the Annual
Chesapeake Celtic Festival, where you’ll find an
array of traditional ales and specialty beers,
comedy, dance, and variety acts, a costumed dog
parade, artisans, local food, and much more.
It’s a fascinating place, nestled in the scenic
Pocomoke Forest, which transports you back in
time from the moment you step inside, and is a
local standby for school trips and group tours.

No matter where you’re headed on Delmarva, you’re bound to find a friendly local
or two who will be more than happy to point you in the direction of a good spot and
a great time.
After all, it’s what we live for.

REAL ESTATE HEADLINES
Top 3 Reasons to Buy NOW in Ocean City, Maryland
1. Prices are heading back towards where they were in 2001 – 2003, prior the real
estate boom of 2003 – 2006. This will not last long, as the trends that we have
observed state that prices are beginning to climb upwards.
2. Interest rates are at an all time low; this will change in the near future, as the
economy is showing steady signs of recovery.
3. Investing in a coastal lifestyle will not only change your life, but give you a better
quality of life in turn. Jay Phillips has the experience and local know-how to deliver
that coastal lifestyle to you, and get you the home you’ve always dreamed of.
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