Ocean City Sunfest officially underway!

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Ocean City Sunfest – WGMD’s Rob Petree

The end of summer would not be the same without a visit to Ocean City’s famous arts, crafts and music festival.

Spanning 45 years by the Town of Ocean City, with beautiful weather, live music, fantastic food and unique arts and crafts, Ocean City’s Sunfest will once again take over the Inlet Lot from September 19-22. Admission to Sunfest is free.

Sunfest offers something for everyone, with four days of just plain fun by the beach and Boardwalk. Boasting nearly 300 vendors including over 180 artists, Sunfest distinctively combines live music, artistic demonstrations, gourmet food and beverages, along with family hayrides on the beach. Sunfest also offers unique elements including T-Mobile’s large exhibit and GEICO’s national marketing tour to win a trip to the CMAs in Nashville.

Another creative addition allows guests to participate in their own artwork with the OC Painting Experience, giving visitors the opportunity to create their own masterpiece.

Kids can enjoy inflatable bounce houses on the beach, family hayrides and activities. After working up an appetite, guests can delight in eastern shore favorites found in the famous food tent or relax to the sounds of free entertainment at the outside pavilion.

Opening on Thursday, September 19, Sunfest will begin with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10:15 a.m. on the outdoor stage. Event hours are 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.

Sunfest features live music playing throughout the duration of the event. All entertainment is free with the exception of evening headline shows. Headliners start on Thursday night with a fantastic stage show by “Who’s Bad” The Ultimate Michael Jackson Experience.

On Friday, the up and coming American southern country star, Granger Smith hits the stage. Saturday fills the Comcast Entertainment Pavilion with concert by Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue.

Tickets for headlining shows are on sale at the Ocean City Convention Center Box Office on 40th St. Box office hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Tickets will also be available on site during Sunfest, or at www.ticketmaster.com, 800-551-7328.

Parking is restricted at the festival grounds so it is advised visitors take advantage of the Town’s Park and Ride services. The West Ocean City Park and Ride on Route 50 just west of the bridge provides a convenient location for attendees with free parking and shuttle service to and from the South Transit Center on S. Division Street, just one block from Sunfest. Shuttle service is $3 to ride all day.

Special Event express shuttle service is also available at the Convention Center on 40th St., where you can park for free in the south lot and ride the express shuttle directly to Sunfest. Fare is $3 to ride all day, as is the normal Coastal Highway bus fare service. Additional park and ride locations are also located at the Public Safety Building on 65th Street, the municipal lot at 100th St. and Northside Park at 125th St. (walk to bus stop on Coastal Highway).

The $3 ride all day pass is valid for use on Coastal Highway, Park n Ride and Express Shuttle buses from 6 a.m. to 6 a.m. Exact fare is required. The Boardwalk tram also will be in service during the event with fare of $3 one way. For additional information regarding bus fares for Senior Citizens, Disabled Persons, Medicare Card Holders and children please call Ocean City Transportation at 410-723-1606 or visit the Public Works Transportation webpage at www.oceancitymd.gov.