Instead of raking leaf after leaf to begin the fall season, head downy ocean, hon, for four days of live music, arts, food and fun at Ocean City's annual Sunfest.
The festival, starting today and running through Sunday, is the city's way of starting its "second season." The event kicks off with a parade down the Boardwalk, beginning at 12th Street.
Visitors can take hayrides on the beach, make scarecrows, participate in a jewelry treasure hunt and lots more. There'll also be a boat show, arts and crafts vendors, a kite festival and, on Sunday, a sand-castle contest where prizes include all-expense-paid vacations.
Musical acts this year are the Marquees, Collin Raye and K.C. and the Sunshine Band. There will also be an outdoor stage featuring plenty of free local entertainment. Various foods, from Eastern Shore fare to ethnic cuisine, will be available.
Sunfest runs 10 a.m.-10 p.m. today-Saturday and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday at the south end of the Boardwalk in the Inlet Lot. Parade at 9:30 a.m. today at 12th Street and the Boardwalk. Sunfest admission is free. Tickets for the three musical acts range from $5 to $30 and can be purchased through TicketMaster at 410-481-SEAT. For Sunfest information, call 800-OC-OCEAN or visit www.ococean.com.