10 secrets of Ocean City [Pictures]
You'd think a breezy resort town that's been around since the late 1800s would have its share of secrets. But if the good folks of Ocean City know of any, they're not fessing up.
"As far as secrets, that's a tough one since we basically promote everything we have to offer," says Donna Abbott, the local tourism spokeswoman. "It's pretty tough keeping secrets in this town."
Indeed, Maryland's famed resort along the Atlantic Ocean -- one that draws upwards of 8 million visitors annually -- doesn't have much to hide. With 10 tidy miles of beach and a nearly three-mile boardwalk packed with arcades and eateries, the charms of these sandy shores are easily revealed.
"The secret of Ocean City is that while it's changed in many ways with the condos and high-rise buildings, at heart, it remains the same," says Joe Kro-Art, longtime owner of the Ocean Gallery World Center, a kitschy art gallery on the boardwalk. "Deep down, it's still a family town, with strong family ties."
So what should visitors know about Ocean City? Here are 10 that may not be secrets but are definitely off the well-beaten sandy path. - Donna M. Owens, Special to The Baltimore Sun
ALSO SEE: Beach Guide 2012 | What's new in Ocean City | Ocean City myths
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1. West Ocean City( Richard Gorelick, Baltimore Sun / June 4, 2011 )
This side of Assawoman Bay boasts yachts, waterfront McMansions and an easy vibe that conjures up the tropics. "West Ocean City is not a part of the town of Ocean City; it's actually outside of the town limits and is an unincorporated part of Worcester County," says Donna Abbott, tourism spokeswoman. "There are many year-round residents who live in the West O.C. area, as well as seasonal residents." The area also covers territory to the north of U.S. 50 across the bay from Ocean City. It has a marina and commercial harbor, and some great restaurants (Harborside Bar and Grill is well-known for its freshly squeezed Orange Crushes, above, while Sunset Grille overlooks the water and has potted palm trees). And for shopping galore, check out name-brand shops at Tanger Outlets, which are being renovated.