Guide to Ocean City for summer 2021: What’s new and outdoor dining


What’s new this summer:

One of the best views of Ocean City has been available since 1985 from the back car of the Tidal Wave roller coaster, which pulls the rider up high enough to see down the length of the barrier island before dropping them through two loops and back again.


A new competitor was added in 2020: The Inlet Eye. This Ferris wheel raises riders nearly 150 feet in the air, even higher than the Tidal Wave, according to the amusement park’s website. Riders can see from Assateague Island to Fenwick Island, Trimper’s says.

In 2020 Windsor Resort Inc. took over management of the century-old institution, which had been run by Grandville Trimper and family, according to the amusement park’s website. Eleven new rides were added in 2020.

Trimper’s also started hosting a weekly farmers market in 2020, the Trimper’s Greenmarket, open 9 a.m. to noon. Fridays. The market starts up again in May. 780 S. Atlantic Ave., Ocean City. 410-289-8617.

Inlet Market: Windsor is continuing to make additions. This year, a new food hall will open next to Trimper’s. The market will be open-air and include nine restaurants and outdoor seating, according to a news release. 806 S. Atlantic Ave. at the end of the boardwalk overlooking the Inlet. 410-289-8617.

Weekly fireworks shows replaced by drone shows: The weekly free fireworks shows offered by Ocean City each summer will be replaced by drone shows that feature dozens of illuminated flying objects that move to make images in the sky. Starting in mid-June the shows will take place Sundays at Northside Park at 9 p.m. and Thursdays at North Division Street and the beach starting at 9:30 p.m.

Mermaid Museum: Have you ever paid someone on the boardwalk a buck or two to look in a box at an imitation Fiji mermaid? Well, for $11 and a trip slightly west to Berlin, you could learn a lot more by visiting the new Mermaid Museum. According to its website, it has oddities, artifacts and other exhibits related to half-person, half-fish creatures. And the gift shop sells mermaid tails. Open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. daily (June -October). 4 Jefferson St., Berlin.

The Buzz Meadery: There is also a new way to get your buzz on in Berlin, which was named America’s Coolest Small Town in 2014 by Budget Travel. The Buzz Meadery offers carbonated mead, or honey wine, made with ingredients sourced locally from the Eastern Shore. It is run by farmers, and batches are made seasonally based on what is growing. 9040 Worcester Highway, Unit D. Berlin. 240-997-2211.

8 outdoor dining locations at Ocean City

Coastal Salt: This new arrival to Ocean City’s boardwalk promises “coastal cuisine in a cool and casual atmosphere.” Plus: 19 tables outside where you can do some serious people-watching. The website even offers a live cam, so you can scope out conditions before you eat (or maybe spy on friends?). When it comes to food, specialties include fried deviled eggs and crab imperial with mahi mahi. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 1601 Atlantic Ave., Ocean City. 410-973-7258.


de Lazy Lizard Bar & Grille: Looking for someplace to take the kids? This waterfront family restaurant features both a kids’ playground and an open-air tiki bar for moms and dads. Those arriving by boat can dock in the marina. Try out the signature watermelon crush. 305 N. 1st St., Ocean City. 410-289-1122.

Fager’s Island Restaurant and Bar: Need a little more drama to end the day? Outdoor decks at this fine-dining establishment overlook the Isle of Wight Bay, where staff members play Tchaikovsky’s cymbal-clashing “1812 Overture” each night as the sun sets. The restaurant opened in 1975 just south of the Route 90 bridge. 201 60th St., Ocean City. 410-524-5500.

Fish Tales: The Ocean City restaurant in Bahia Marina garnered smiles and props for innovation last summer for its bumper bar tables: large, black tubes on wheels that allowed diners to enjoy meals while standing and staying safely apart. The tables won’t be making a comeback this season, according to staff, but the place will offer plenty of outdoor seating. 22nd St., Bayside, Ocean City. 410-289-0990.

The Hobbit Restaurant: The Hobbit, an upscale eatery in Rivendell Condos, plans to open an outdoor dining area on its parking lot this summer to guests. 121 81st St. (Bayside, in the bottom floor of Rivendell Condos), Ocean City. 410-524-8100.

Hooked: An Ocean City offshoot of Just Hooked in Fenwick Island and Off the Hook in Bethany Beach, Hooked serves up a seasonal and locally sourced menu. A front-area tiki bar and small second-floor deck accommodate guests who want to sit outside. 8003 Coastal Highway, Ocean City. 410-723-4665.

Ropewalk Ocean City: The family-friendly restaurant serves lunch and dinner overlooking Assawoman Bay. Lounge at a fire pit in the sand for an only-at-the-beach experience. 8203 Coastal Highway, Ocean City. 410-524-1009.


Tailchasers Restaurant and Dock Bar: Set to open in late spring following some renovations, Tailchasers boasts a menu that’s “fresh. honest. local,” according to the restaurant website. The dock bar includes a kid-friendly playground with sand and palm trees plus seating. Tables fill up during the season, so come early to snag a spot. 12203 Coastal Highway, Unit B, Ocean City. 443-664-7075.