The Dew Tour Beach Championships brings the action to Ocean City this week for the third year in a row. The extreme sports competition includes events in BMX, skateboarding and surfing all right on the beach. Here are 10 tips on how to really enjoy the action.
1. Bring the kids. Nothing is cooler than seeing your favorite skater up close. Sponsors typically have some extra surprises for the kids- skateboard and BMX courses set up so they can skate like the legends. They can also get their boards and other items autographed by the skaters.
2. Get there early. If you want a good seat, that is, but if you sleep in you can still get a view. The Dew Tour is a free event, so the crowds are likely to be big. Come early if you want to make sure you have a seat in the stands.
3. Enjoy the free concerts. Free concerts on the beach take place both Friday and Saturday nights startng at 8 p.m. On Friday, fans can enjoy performances by Krewella and DJ Stimulus. On Saturday, Talib Kweli is the headliner and DJ Stimulus returns.
4. Be sun smart. As always, the best advice is to wear sunscreen and stay hydrated. Bring your own water bottles because boardwalk prices can be steep. Also, if you don't want your feet trampled, closed-toe shoes might be the way to go. And if you don't like that advice, at least wear sandals — going barefoot seems cool until your feet are burning from hot sand.
5. Look for the legends. One of the most exciting events on the schedule is the Skateboard Legends Bowl, featuring athletes like Chris Miller, Lance Mountain and Tony Magnusson. You can watch the people who shaped modern skateboarding compete in a setting similar to the emptied out pools the sport took off in.
6. See the art of life. New this year is Recognize: Art, part of the Dew Tour's new series showcasing the extreme-sports lifestyle. It features live music and art celebrating the action sports industry, including work from skateboarding legend Steve Caballero. This one takes place in Berlin, so you'll have to get off the sand to see it 8 -11 p.m., Saturday, June 22, at Berlin Properties North, 10009 Old Ocean City Blvd., Berlin.
7. Practice counts. Don't rule out going to the practice sessions; athletes try things out that they might not attempt during competition, and watching the skaters hangout is great.
8. Bring cash. The location of the Dew Tour puts you right at the heart of the boardwalk. That makes it easy to take a break from the action and head out to get lunch, dinner or snacks. If you're staying out all day you might want to stay hydrated too. The trick is, plenty of places to eat on the boardwalk only take cash. So before you head out, make sure you have some.
9. Plan for crowds. Traffic, parking and all the usual troubles associated with a big weekend in Ocean City. You can park for free on St. Louis Avenue, if you can find open spaces on the street. Apart from that your best and most stress-free bet is taking the bus or using the park and ride from West Ocean City, where you can park for free by the bridge and take the bus or walk over.
10. Go premium. The whole Dew Tour Experience is free again this year, but if you want to make sure you get a seat and the best view at every event you can buy a Premium Pass. This will get you reserved seating, gifts, a souvenir credential and some other swag. You really have to pay for it though- you have to buy a pass for each day individually, although prices are about 20 percent lower this year than in 2012. Right now premium passes are $35 for Thursday and $80 each for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Schedule of events
Full schedule available at dewtour.com
Friday, June 21
•BMX Vert Final, 6:30-8 p.m.
•Concert: New Politics and Krewella, 8- 10 p.m.
Saturday, June 22
•BMX Street Session, 2-2:30 p.m.
•Skateboard Vert Final, 4-6 p.m.- Broadcast Live on NBC
•Skateboard Legends Bowl Final, 7-8:30 p.m.
•Skateboard Street Session, 9-9:30 p.m.
•Concert: DJ Stimulus and Talib Kweli, 9-11 p.m.
Sunday, June 23
•BMX Flatland Final, 12:30-1:30 p.m.
•BMX Park Final, 2-4 p.m.- Broadcast Live on NBC
•Skateboard Bowl Final, 5:30-7 p.m.
Events outside the Dew Tour Experience
Ocean Bowl Bash, 2-9 p.m., Wednesday, June 19, at Ocean Bowl Skate Park, 3rd Street and St. Louis Avenue, 410-289-2695. Come join the community for a party at Ocean City's skate park to kick-off the Dew Tour. There will be live music, a skate contest, a rock wall, plus radio stations and local surf shops will be on hand. The bash benefits Grind For Life, a charity that provides financial assistance to cancer patients and their families to help afford traveling long distances to doctors and hospitals.
Competitors for the Surf Shop Showdown
7-10 p.m., Thursday, June 20
Atlantic Shoals Surf Shop, surfatlanticshoals.com, 302-539-3700. Surfers: Brad Flora, Seth Conboy
Chauncey's Surf Shop, chaunceyssurfshop.com, 410-289-7405. Surfer: Colin Herlihy
K-Coast Surf Shop, kcoast.com, 410-524-8500. Surfers: Tyler Clazey, Sam Deeley
Malibu's Surf Shop, malibus.com, 410-289-3000. Surfers: Travis Knight, Dillon Harrington
Quiet Storm Surf Shop, quietstormsurf.com, 410-289-7000. Surfer: Vince BoulangerCopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun