Knowing the beach rules can avoid future hassles

For The Baltimore Sun

Summer is just getting started, which means you’re likely jonesing for a beach vacation. But before you pack the car and head toward the Bay Bridge, you’ll want to make sure you’re well informed.

No matter where you’re heading — Ocean City, Delaware’s beaches or Assateague Island — cocktails and the beach don’t mix; if you’re caught consuming alcohol you could face hefty fines.

If your pampered pooch is tagging along, you’ll also want to find a pet-friendly hotel and keep pup off the beach; in Ocean City, dogs are not permitted on the beach or Boardwalk from May 1 through Sept. 30. 

The same is true for the beaches in Delaware, except Dewey Beach.  With a license, which you can pick up at Town Hall for $5-$35 depending on the length of your stay, your furry friend can enjoy the beach year-round. It’s important to note that pets are not permitted on the beach between 9:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. in the summer.

In Ocean City, swimmers are always allowed in the water, except during storms and on designated surfing beaches. To ensure surfers have space to enjoy their sport, the beach is closed to swimmers at two locations each day. The surfing beaches rotate so as not to inconvenience visitors. The 2013 surfing beach schedule has not yet been posted, but should be available in the coming weeks.

Listening to music, playing ball and flying kites are permitted, but regulated by the Ocean City Beach Patrol. If you choose to do any of these activities, be mindful of those around you.

For questions about summer rules and regulations, call 410-289-7556 or ask a lifeguard. They’re on duty daily from 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Here’s to a beach vacation packed with sunshine, family, friends and unforgettable moments.

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