Thousands of runners and cyclists will descend on Ocean City this weekend for two great events: the OCNJ Half Marathon and the MS City to Shore Ride. Both events are fall traditions in Ocean City that draw participants from across the nation.
Organizers of the OCNJ Half Marathon are expecting a strong turnout for three races on Sunday, Sept. 26, and registration is still open. In addition to the 13.1-mile Half Marathon, the event includes a 10-mile non-competitive walk/run and a 5-kilometer race.
Online registration for the races continues through 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 23. In-person registration will be available with packet pickup 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday (Sept. 24 and 25) at the Ocean City Free Public Library. There will be race-day registration for the 5K and 10-mile events starting at 6:30 a.m. at the Ocean City Music Pier. There will be no race-day registration for the Half Marathon.
For complete information and registration, visit www.ocnj.us/race-events. The increasingly popular event showcases Ocean City’s boardwalk, downtown and neighborhoods with ocean views along a fast, flat course.
The public is encouraged to come out and cheer for runners. Volunteer groups man “peppy” water stations and are judged for their themes. Contact Lisa Rumer at email@example.com if your group would like to volunteer.
The OCNJ Half Marathon and 10-Miler start at 8:30 a.m. The event will include some brief road closings, including the closing of the Ocean City-Longport Bridge from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. on race day. Drivers on other streets and boardwalk pedestrians/bicyclists should anticipate delays as the field of runners passes by. The 5K will start at 8:40 a.m.
With thousands of cyclists raising millions of dollars each year for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the MS City to Shore Ride boasts that it is the best cycling experience on the East Coast. The annual bicycle trek will begin in Cherry Hill early on Saturday, Sept. 25, and finish at the parking lot at Fifth Street and Boardwalk with many of the riders staying overnight and returning the next day. Motorists should expect delays along a route that travels from the Route 52 causeway to Bay Avenue to Fifth Street. For complete information, visit www.mscycling.org.
ALSO THIS WEEK
· Farmers Market: The popular weekly Farmers Market on the grounds of the Ocean City Tabernacle continue 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 22. The market features the best of fresh produce from local farms in the region, along with a variety of craft vendors, and this will be the second-to-last chance to take advantage before the market closes for the season after Sept. 29.
· Boardwalk and Downtown Merchant Table Sales (Oct. 2-3): 6th Street to 14th Street on the Boardwalk and Asbury Avenue.
· Ocean City, NJ Jeep Invasion (Oct. 3): Jeeps will be displayed on the boardwalk between 5th Street and 14th Street from noon to 5 p.m. For more information, visit NJJeepInvasion.com.
· BEEHIVE — The ’60s Musical (Oct. 8, 9, 15, 16, 17): A toe-tapping musical tribute to the rockin’ women who made the music of the era so special – everyone from Lesley Gore to Janis Joplin, from the Shirelles to the Supremes, Aretha Franklin to Tina Turner. This fully staged musical revue will feature a professional cast of performers. Show times are 7 p.m. October 8, 9, 15 and 16, and 2 p.m. Oct. 17 at the Ocean City Music Pier. Tickets $20, $18 (seniors). Call 609-399-6111 or visit oceancityvacation.com/boxoffice.
· Fall Block Party and Fireworks Spectacular (Oct. 9): The popular Fall Block party returns on Saturday, Oct. 9 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. More than 400 crafters, food vendors, music and more will line Asbury Avenue from Fifth Street to 14th Street. At 9 p.m. that evening, fireworks will light the skies over the boardwalk from Fifth Street to 14th Street. For more information, call 1-800-BEACH-NJ.
· Boardwalk and Downtown Merchant Table Sales (Oct. 9-11): 6th Street to 14th Street on the Boardwalk and Asbury Avenue.
· Making Strides Breast Cancer of Ocean City (Oct. 10): The American Cancer Society’s Making Strides is a 5000+ participant breast cancer fundraising 5K walk honoring over 250 survivors in Ocean City. Information and registration are available at http://www.makingstrideswalk.org/OceanCityNJ.
Find more events in our What’s Happening Column