Nothing says summer quite like a visit to the boardwalk in Ocean City! For Marylanders young and old, memories of spending summer days strolling up and down the historic vacation spot are some of the most cherished of all. And as it turns out, there are plenty of interesting things you might not have known about the boardwalk!
1. The Boardwalk is Really, Really Old
115 years old, actually! According to the boardwalk's website, it was first built in 1902, to help hotel owners and their guests gets across the beach more easily. It was actually portable, and would get rolled up and put away at high tide. They made it permanent in 1910, and then expanded it to its current length after the 'storm of the century' destroyed the original in 1962's Storm of the Century. (You can see photos of the storm's damage right here.) Now, it runs 2.5 miles. It also got a nice little face-lift about 5 years ago to keep it looking spiffy!
2. The Carousel at Trimper's Is ALSO Pretty Old
It's actually the oldest continuously used carousel in the USA! The gorgeous animals, from the traditional horses to the unusual dragons, goats and tigers, were all beautifully carved in Germany before being shipped over here. According to the Chesapeake Ghostwalk site, visitors have reported smelling the perfume of Joanne Trimper, who adored the family carousel before her death in 1991. (We're sure her spirit is friendly, and just wants to go for a ride like the rest of us!)
Photo via Chesapeake Ghostwalk
3. Smile! You're On Camera
Many spots in Ocean City, including across the boardwalk, have webcams that you can watch just about anytime, with just a click. Whether you want to know what the weather's like, want to see how busy the boardwalk is at any given time, or just miss the boardwalk, you can check them out here!
4. No Way Can You Forget The Fries!
Thrashers is a boardwalk staple! Please, please don't tell us you haven't had them. These delicious fries have been here for five generations, delighting hungry tourists and bold seagulls alike. Don't make the mistake of dropping these precious treats, or every seabird on the East Coast will swarm you! What do you like to put on them? They're pretty darn good with ketchup, tartar sauce and honey mustard.
Photo via Thrasher's
5. Sharks, Sharks Everywhere!
Relax, we're not talking about sharks in the water. You can see all the sharks you need just walking down the boardwalk. At the Lifesaving Museum, you can see the lifeguarding hunks of the past and learn all about the history of Ocean City, but you can also meet a tiger shark that was hauled up years ago. Walk a little further down the boardwalk, and you'll meet one of the most famous finned residents of OC -- the giant shark that's crashed through the walls of Ripley's Believe It Or Not! (Maybe the Sharknado threw it there?) Sharks do swim off the coast of Maryland, but they generally don't bother anybody.
Image via TripAdvisor