(December 22, 2014):  After a wonderful evening visiting the children of West Ocean City, Santa has cleared his schedule this evening, December 22, in order to visit the Ocean City community.  From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. (with a rain date scheduled for tomorrow, December 23), Jolly Old St. Nicholas will make his way through downtown Ocean City and eventually up to the northern  neighborhoods.  For those that might miss Santa Claus driving by their home, have no fear, Santa will make a special stop at Station 4 (located at 12925 Coastal Highway) after making his way through the resort town.


For more information, call the Ocean City Fire Department at 410.289.4346.

(December 18, 2014): Santa has given Rudolf the evening off and instead will be visiting neighborhoods in West Ocean City while riding a OCFD Fire Truck.

The dates and times are as follows:

Santa will visit the West Ocean City area while riding the OCFD fire truck:

Date:       Sunday, December 21, 2014

Times:     5PM – 8PM

Santa will also be available to meet the children at OCVFD Station #5 on Keyser Point Road:

Date:      Sunday, December 21, 2014

Time:      8PM – 9PM

For more information, call the Ocean City Fire Department at 410.289.4346.

Holiday Celebrations, Services and Closings

(December 16, 2014) – The Town of Ocean City is reminding citizens that administrative offices will be closed on Wednesday, December 24, and Thursday, December 25, in observance of the Christmas holiday. The normal trash pickup schedule will be in effect on Wednesday, December 24, however; there will be no trash collection on Thursday, December 25. 

Also beginning December 26, the Town of Ocean City will once again provide a Christmas tree drop-off site at the 100th Street Municipal Parking Lot.  Trees can be placed in the northeast corner of the 100th Street lot December 26 through January 15.  Please remove all tinsel, ornaments and other non-wooden items from the tree. Trees collected at the site are taken to the county landfill where they are recycled.

Citizens should also be reminded that Town of Ocean City administrative offices will be closed on Thursday, January 1, in observance of the New Year’s holiday.  There will be no trash collection on New Year’s Day.  The normally scheduled trash collection will resume on Friday, January 2.

Also modifying their normal schedule for the holiday is the Town of Ocean City’s Transportation Department, who will offer free bus service from 6 a.m. on December 31 to 6 a.m. on January 1.  On December 31, bus services will run every 20 minutes from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and every 10 minutes from 6 p.m. until 4 a.m. on January 1.  Busses on New Year’s Day will also run every 20 minutes from 4 a.m. until 7 a.m., at which time they will resume a normal winter service schedule of every 40 minutes.

Along with free bus services, the Town of Ocean City will be hosting a free fireworks show on New Year’s Eve to celebrate the beginning of 2015 and the 22nd Annual Winterfest of Lights. The show, which will begin promptly at midnight, will be accompanied by musical entertainment, warm hot chocolate (for a small fee) and the opportunity to ride the Winterfest of Lights.  Hours for Winterfest will be extended until 12 a.m. to allow visitors to travel through the winter paradise of lights and then listen to music by DJ Kutt as they wait for the countdown to midnight. 

With more than one million holiday lights sparkling throughout Northside Park, the Winterfest of Lights New Year’s Eve Fireworks Show is unlike other celebrations around. We added the New Year’s Eve fireworks show to the Winterfest of Lights and it has been a huge hit amongst residents and visitors who were looking for a fun and family-friendly way to ring in the New Year,” said Mayor Rick Meehan.  “The fireworks show is free for everyone and is an exciting and affordable way for people of all ages to ring in the New Year in Ocean City.” 

The New Year’s Eve festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. inside the Winterfest Pavilion, with the celebration continuing on until midnight at Northside Park. For more information about the Winterfest of Lights and the New Year’s Eve Fireworks Show, please visit

On New Year’s Day, the celebration continues at the Mayor and City Council’s 19th Annual Open House, scheduled from 1 to 3 p.m. at the new Performing Art’s Center. The Open House, which has been a community tradition since 1997, offers a different theme each year. This year’s theme will feature the evolution of the Convention Center, highlighting the building’s new attraction, the Performing Art Center.

With a new year and a new tradition, the Mayor’s Open House will offer an open invitation for residents and visitors to meet the Mayor and City Council members. Once inside, visitors can view the pictorial history of the Convention Center, while also having the privilege to enjoy a first-look of the two tiered, 1,200 seat auditorium.  This rare glimpse, which takes place before the official Performing Arts Ribbon Cutting, will also offer live and local entertainment by Bryan Russo with several special guest performances.

“The Open House offers the perfect opportunity for our citizens to meet with the elected officials that serve our community,” commented Mayor Rick Meehan.  “The tradition at City Hall has been carried on for nearly two decades, so what better time than now to allow residents and guests to preview the Performing Art Center. It’s a perfect time to start a new tradition in our incredible new theater.”

Also participating in the event are several of the town’s community partners, including the Ocean City Beautification Committee, the Ocean City Development Corporation, the Art League of Ocean City, the Beach Patrol, the Downtown Association and the Community Response Team.  Outside the festively decorated Convention Center, the Ocean City Fire Department will have equipment on display and also back by popular community demand will be the mounted police and canine units of the Ocean City Police Department. 

For more information about Town of Ocean City services and holiday closings, please visit





Keep Your Holidays from Going Up in Flames

Ocean City Fire Department Offers Fire Prevention Tips for a Safe and Festive Holiday Season

(December 8, 2014) – For most of us, the holiday season represents a time for family festivities and good cheer. What few of us consider is that the holiday season is a time when there is an increased risk of home fires. According to the Ocean City Fire Department, many households engage in holiday activities that serve as some of the leading causes of U.S. home fires, including cooking. Christmas trees, candle usage and holiday decorations also significantly contribute to the seasonal causes of home fires. Add to that the hectic nature of the holidays, when people are trying to accomplish multiple tasks at one time, and the chance for home fires grows even more.

“As everyone gets busier during the holidays, we often become rushed, distracted or tired,” says Ocean City Fire Marshal David Hartley. “That’s when home fires are more likely to occur.”

Fortunately, with a little added awareness and some minor adjustments to holiday cooking and decorating, the season can remain festive and safe for everybody. “By taking some preventive steps and following simple rules of thumb, most home fires can be prevented,” Hartley continued.

With unattended cooking as the leading cause of U.S. home fires and home fire injuries, Hartley says to stay in the kitchen while you’re frying, grilling or broiling food. Most cooking fires involve the stovetop, so keep anything that can catch fire away from it, and turn off the stove when you leave the kitchen, even if it’s for a short period of time. If you’re simmering, boiling, baking or roasting food, check it regularly and use a timer to remind you that you’re cooking. The Ocean City Fire Department also suggests creating a “kid-free zone” of at least three feet around the stove and areas where hot food and drinks are prepared or carried.

Candles are widely used in homes throughout the holidays, and December is the peak month for home candle fires. The nonprofit National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) statistics show that two of every five home decoration fires are started by candlesThe Ocean City Fire Department encourages residents to consider using flameless candles, which look and smell like real candles.

However, if you do use traditional candles, keep them at least 12” away from anything that can burn, and remember to blow them out when you leave the room or go to bed. Use candle holders that are sturdy, won’t tip over and are placed on uncluttered surfaces. Avoid using candles in the bedroom where one-third of U.S. candle fires begin or other areas where people may fall asleep. Lastly, never leave a child or pet alone in a room with a burning candle.

According to NFPA, U.S. fire departments respond to an average of 230 home structure fires caused by Christmas trees per year. One of every three of them is caused by electrical problems, and one in six result from a heat source that’s too close to the tree. The Ocean City Fire Department offers the following advice for picking, placing and lighting the tree:

  • If you have an artificial tree, be sure it’s labeled, certified or identified by the manufacturer as fire-retardant.
  • If you choose a fresh tree, make sure the green needles don’t fall off when touched; before placing it in the stand, cut 2” from the base of the trunk. Add water to the tree stand, and be sure to water it daily.
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit, and is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, space heaters, radiators, candles and heat vents or lights.
  • Use lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory, and make sure you know whether they are designed for indoor or outdoor use.
  • Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords, or loose bulb connections. Read manufacturer’s instructions for number of light strands to connect.
  • Never use lit candles to decorate the tree.
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving the home or going to bed.
  • After Christmas, get rid of the tree. Dried-out trees are a fire hazard and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside the home.
  • Bring outdoor electrical lights inside after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer.
  • Please Note: Live trees are not permitted within hotels or assembly occupancies (bars/restaurants/nightclubs).

Although good maintenance of holiday equipment can help lessen the risk of a home fire, it cannot entirely prevent it.  Working smoke alarms are vital in notification of a fire, allowing you and your family adequate time to escape.  Install at least one smoke alarm on every floor of your home (including the basement) and outside each sleeping area.  It’s a good idea, especially if you sleep with your doors closed, that a smoke alarm is also installed inside your bedroom.  Alarms mounted on the wall should be positioned 4-12 inches from the ceiling, while ceiling-mounted alarms should be positioned 4 inches or more away from the nearest wall.  Alarms must be tested every month, and have their batteries replaced twice a year.

By following these fire prevention tips and measures, the Ocean City Fire Department says you can greatly reduce the risk of fire in your home, and enjoy a safe holiday season. “The holidays can quickly turn from joyful to tragic when a fire occurs,” Hartley finished. “By taking simple precautions, people can avoid potential fire hazards, and make this time of year a healthy and happy one.”

For more tips on how to make this holiday season a safe one for you and your family, or to inquire what decorations are permitted in your business, visit or contact the Ocean City Fire Department, Office of the Fire Marshal.


Give a Lasting Gift to your Loved Ones this Holiday Season

Beatification Committee offering special rate for “Reflections of Life” display


(December 8, 2014) – In celebration of the holiday season, the Ocean City Beautification Committee is presenting a special offer to the public for the committee’s Reflections of Life project. The project provides a distinctive means of recording important events and interests in the lives of individuals, their loved ones and businesses by placing a gift of a bronze, silver or gold leaf or stepping stone on the impressive “Reflections of Life” bronze tree sculpture mounted inside the lobby entrance of the Roland E. Powell Convention Center.

The Beautification Committee special, which runs until December 28, features leaves at 50 percent off the normal price.  For the remainder of the holiday season, you can order gold leaves for $250, instead of $500; silver leaves, regularly $350, are now $175 and bronze leaves, $250, are $125.

Tax-deductible donation forms are available at two locations in the convention center, at the project site near the main entrance and in the visitor center, along with Northside Park, 125th Street bayside. Forms can also be found on the town’s website at Checks should be made payable to the Town of Ocean City.

The Ocean City Beautification Committee has organized the project to raise funds for the purchase, installation and landscaping of a custom water feature to be installed at the convention center. For more information, call Toni Wagner at 410-250-0892 or Donna Greenwood at 410.289.7060.



Town of Ocean City Announces Holiday Closing

The Town of Ocean City is reminding citizens that administrative offices will be closed on Thursday, November 27 and Friday, November 28, in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. There will be no trash collection on Thursday, November 27, however; normal solid waste schedules will resume on Friday, November 28.

The Town of Ocean City wishes all residents, visitors and businesses a safe, happy and healthy holiday.  For more information on the Town of Ocean City’s hours of operation, please visit: