(April 26, 2019) Music, unique vendors and a plethora of food highlight Ocean City’s 29th annual Springfest celebration, May 2-5, and the start of the resort’s summertime traditions.
“Springfest is just a great staple event for the town [with] free music, great food and a lot of craft booths and vendors,” said Frank Miller, Ocean City Special Events superintendent.
Springfest will kick off Thursday, May 2, at 10:15 a.m. on the outdoor stage with a Stephen Decatur NJROTC color guard performance and the OC Stars singing the National Anthem.
Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan will conclude the program with a ribbon-cutting ceremony, which will officially open Springfest.
Thousands of people from all across the country come out to browse more than 200 craft booths, get a bite to eat at one of the more than 30 food vendors or check out dozens of free concerts.
“Some vendors have been coming for years and years, and if you love that great festival food just go stand in the tent for 20 minutes … you can smell those wonderful aromas from festival food,” Miller said.
Ideal weather helped boost attendance of last year’s Springfest, which outpaced the 2017 turnout by more than 30,000 people, with 137,570 visitors overall in 2018.
New this year, as a result of success during Sunfest in September, the Ocean City Police Department will feature a K-9 and mounted patrol demonstration at the east of the entertainment pavilion.
“Sunfest in 2018 was our first year that we did an Ocean City Police Department K-9 demonstration [and] that went over so well that for Springfest 2019, we decided to bring that back and we’re going to run that all four days,” Miller said.
More than 200 arts and crafts vendors will be on site selling candles, photography, fine and glass art, jewelry, decorative items, accessories, wind chimes, bird houses, furniture, pottery and many more unique treasures from around the world.
“The vendors may change up so you’ll see some new vendors here and there,” Miller said. “You’ll see your favorite vendors as well … whether it’s on the food side or the arts and crafts side or the commercial vendor side.”
More than 30 food vendors will provide a variety of treats including crepes, pit beef, ham, turkey, bacon-wrapped corn dogs, pizza, funnel cakes and deep-fried candy and Oreos.
Dozens of free musical performances will be taking place all weekend from country to rock, reggae and tribute bands.
On Thursday night, Almost Queen will take the stage at 7 p.m., and tickets are still available for $10-15. Tickets can be purchased by calling 1-800-551-7328, at the festival’s ticket booth or through Ticketmaster.com.
“Almost Queen is a great stage show,” Miller said. “If you enjoy Queen back in the 70s … this is a group that looks a lot like them. They do the stage show just like them and they sound like them.”
On Friday, May 3, country music singer LeAnn Rimes will start at 8 p.m. followed by Night Ranger with special guests the Reagan Years on Saturday, May 4, beginning at the same time.
Tickets for Rimes are still available and range from $36-136. Night Ranger tickets are also available for $35.
“Reagan Years has a lot of great 1980 songs and they do a fabulous job with it,” Miller said. “They’re the opening band for Night Ranger and of course, Night Ranger is going to play their hits as well. So it’ll be a good night.”
Springfest runs Thursday through Saturday, May 3-5, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, May 6, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
For more information, visit www.ococean.com/springfest or call 800-626-2326.
Parking is free at the convention center south lot on 40th Street. Shuttles depart the lot every 30 minutes from 9 a.m. until 30 minutes following the end of the evening’s last concert, Thursday through Saturday, and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Ride the Boardwalk tram directly to the Springfest grounds for $4 per person one-way. The tram runs from 10 a.m. to midnight on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Due to limited parking around the festival, park vehicle for free at the Public Safety Building on 65th Street, Northside Park on 125th Street or the Municipal Lot on 100th Street and take the bus to Springfest. Ride the bus for $3 all day.
Take advantage of the town’s Park & Ride location on Route 50 in West Ocean City. Park for free and hop on the non-stop shuttle to Springfest.
Those who require special assistance with handicapped transportation should call 410-723-1606.
While at Springfest, check out the official event merchandise tent located just inside the main entrance.
For more information about Springfest, call the Ocean City Recreation & Parks Department at 410-250-0125, or toll-free 1-800-626-2326.