Ocean City’s Night in Venice celebration returns on Saturday (July 24, 2021) for the 66th time since it began in 1954 as a way to mark Ocean City’s 75th anniversary. After missing last year’s event, everybody will be excited for the return of the festivities.
Just announced on Monday: Kate Flannery, a star of NBC’s “The Office,” will be at the Music Pier on Friday, July 23 for a special meet-and-greet session. Tickets for the event are on sale now.
Here’s everything you need to know to enjoy the Night in Venice festivities and the Kate Flannery event.
When is Night in Venice?
The parade starts at 6 p.m. on Saturday, July 24, 2021.
Where does the parade route begin and end?
The boat parade begins near the Ocean City-Longport toll bridge and travels along the bayside to Tennessee Avenue, looping in and out of lagoons along the way.
Where can I watch the parade?
To view the Night In Venice boat parade, grandstands will be set up at street ends along the bay from Battersea Road to 16th Street and also at Tennessee Avenue. These are free and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Streets include: Battersea Rd., North Street, First Street, Sixth Street, Seventh Street, 11th Street, 13th Street, 15th Street, 16th Street and Tennessee Avenue.
The Bayside Center, 520 Bay Avenue, will be open with a picnic area, barbecued food for sale (to benefit the Junior Raiders football and cheerleading squads) and bleacher seating plus DJ entertainment. Tickets are on sale, $4 for children (12-and-under) and $8 for adults. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. with DJ entertainment playing from then until the first boats in the parade arrive at about 6:15 p.m. The DJ will resume after the parade and play until the fireworks start at approximately 9 p.m. Tickets may be purchased by cash, check or charge at: City Hall, 861 Asbury Avenue, any day 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. No alcohol is permitted, and no parking is available. Tickets are also available online at oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice. Don’t wait to purchase tickets as this event sells out.
What does it cost?
The parade is free to watch at all locations except the Bayside Center.
Where can I park?
Free parking and shuttle service will run starting at 4 p.m. Parking will be available at:
· Ocean City Municipal Airport: 25th Street and Bay Avenue
· Soccer Field at Tennessee Avenue: Off Shelter Road
· Ocean City Community Center: 1735 Simpson Avenue
Shuttles will drop off spectators at street ends where they can watch the parade and return them to the parking lots afterward. The shuttle also drops off at the Bayside Center. The service is free and will be available until 10 p.m.
Parking restrictions begin at midnight Friday (July 23) through midnight Saturday (July 24) for the following locations:
· Both sides of Bay Avenue between 16th Street and 24th Street
· The east side of Bay Avenue between 14th Street and 16th Street.
· West 16th Street, West 17th Street and West 18th Street will have parking restrictions in place.
Parking regulations will be strictly enforced. Violators will be ticketed and in severe cases, the vehicles will be towed if public safety is affected. This is to allow for safe passage of all pedestrian and vehicle traffic and emergency vehicle access to all areas of the bayfront.
Can I watch from the Ninth Street Bridge?
All pedestrians and bicyclists should use the Shared Use Bike Path and stay to the south side shoulder for viewing. No persons will be allowed to bring chairs for seating onto the bridge. At no time will persons block the free movement of the Shared Use Bike Path. No open alcoholic beverages are permitted on the bridge at any time. Persons are not permitted to walk along the bridge with motor vehicle traffic. Ocean City Police will be present monitoring the bridge while the parade is in progress for assistance.
What is the Night in Venice theme?
The event’s theme is “Honoring Our Heroes.” Boats and houses are encouraged to pay tribute to all of the health care workers, first responders, essential employees and others who helped us get through the year. Participants may also use last year’s planned “Olympics” theme. These themes are optional.
When and where are the fireworks?
Night in Venice will include a fireworks display launched after the parade from a barge in the bay north of the Ninth Street Bridge, roughly off Third Street. The display should be best viewed from street ends or the bayfront between the Ocean City-Longport toll bridge and 16th Street.
Anyone with a boat or anyone with a house along the bayfront parade route can participate by decorating their boat or home. Judges pick winners among boats, homes and condominium complexes.
How do I participate?
You can register your boat or house online at ocnj.us/niv.
How can I see results of the contest?
Are paddleboards and kayaks part of the parade?
For safety reasons, paddleboards and kayaks are not part of the Night in Venice parade.
Who sponsors Night in Venice?
ACME Markets is the presenting sponsor. Look for some of ACME’s essential workers to be part of this year’s parade.
Will there be a grand marshal?
Dr. Christopher Lucasti, Dr. Charles Roche, Dr. Gary Raab, Dr. Jason Chew and Dr. Jeanne Rowe (who will not be able to attend) will be among the honored “Heroes” in this year’s parade.
KATE FLANNERY MEET & GREET SET FOR FRIDAY
Come meet Kate Flannery at the Ocean City Music Pier 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, July 23 at the Ocean City Music Pier. Guests will have the opportunity to take one photo (on their own camera) and get an autograph (on provided photo). Tickets are $20 and on sale now at oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice and at Welcome Centers throughout town.
Kate is best known for her nine seasons as Meredith on NBC’s The Office. She is an actress, comedian, and singer. Kate has recently been seen on Young Sheldon on CBS. She’s been heard on Cartoon Network’s Ok Ko and Steven Universe. She has guest starred on FOX’s Brooklyn Nine Nine, New Girl, ABC’s American Housewife, Comedy Central’s Another Period, HULU’s All Night and FOX NFL pre-game show on Riggle’s Picks. She was in the Tribeca Film Fest’s Tenured and Slow Learners and in the critically acclaimed Forth Man Out on NETFLIX. Kate stars in the HBO short Emergency Contact, How To Get Girls, Dial A Prayer with William H. Macy, and the Sundance hit, Cooties with Elijah Wood. She has also sung with the Ocean City Pop’s Orchestra.
TICKETS ON SALE FOR ‘ALL SHOOK UP’
Elvis Presley’s hits roar to life on the Ocean City Music Pier stage in the new Broadway musical comedy “All Shook Up,” starring Ocean City Theatre Company’s High School Jr Company. This madcap musical comedy based on Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” plays July 30 and 31 at 7:30 p.m. and overflows with rock, gospel, romance and mistaken identities.
The musical tells the story of a small-town girl with big dreams and the motorcycle-riding roustabout she falls for. Among the many hits that will have you jumping out of your blue suede shoes are “Love Me Tender,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Hound Dog” and “It’s Now or Never.” Tickets are $15 per person and can be purchased by calling 609-399-6111 or by visiting oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 21
Ocean City’s “Wacky But Not Tacky” series of Wacky Wednesdays continues at 10:30 a.m. July 21 at the Ocean City Music Pier. The event invites families and individuals to participate in various activities and contests. This week, families are invited to celebrate the Christmas holiday season in July with a special craft and a visit from Santa while he is in town on vacation. Dress in red and green to participate in our wacky Christmas meets summer fashion show. No advance registration is required for this free family event.
The popular weekly Farmers Market on the grounds of the Ocean City Tabernacle continue 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Wednesday through Sept. 29. The market features the best of fresh produce from local farms in the region, along with a variety of craft vendors.
THURSDAY, JULY 22
Market Days entertainment and activities on downtown Asbury Avenue will run 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. July 22 and continue Thursday mornings through the season.
Family Night entertainers at various blocks on the Ocean City Boardwalk will perform Thursday evenings 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The OCBP Women’s Lifeguard Invitational Races at 34th Street Beach begin at 6:15 p.m. and include women representing the 15 beach patrols on the South Jersey coast.
SUNDAY, JULY 25
Hear the Ocean City Pops at their best in a program that features Justin and Rachel Anne Moore. Hand-picked by Andrew Lloyd Webber to perform in “Love Never Dies” (the sequel to “Phantom of the Opera”), Ms. Moore recently made her Broadway debut in 2019. The show is at the Music Pier at 7:30 p.m. For tickets, call 609-399-6111 or visit oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice.
TUESDAY, JULY 27
The Ocean City Theatre Company will present “Awesome Allie: First Astronaut Kid.” The show will be performed at 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. All tickets are $10 in advance and $12 on the day of the show. Call 609-399-6111 or visit oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice.
Funtastic Tuesdays entertainment and activities on downtown Asbury Avenue will run 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. July 20 and continue Tuesday mornings through the season.
Mummers Night features string bands strutting the Ocean City Boardwalk on Tuesday nights from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.