Memorial Day Service Set for May 26 at Veterans Park

The service begins at 11 a.m.

Patch File Photo
Patch File Photo
Written and submitted by Mark Soifer, Ocean City Public Relations Director

The Memorial Day Weekend has become a joyous recognition that the sunny season is returning. But more importantly, it is also a somber time, as we pause to recognize those who have given their lives in defense of our country.

Ocean City’s annual Memorial Day Service will be held 11 a.m. on Monday, May 26 at Veterans Memorial Park, 5th and Wesley Avenue. In the event of inclement weather, the service will be moved across the street to the Tabernacle Auditorium.

Also on May 26 at 9:15 a.m., Ocean City Lifeguards will row out in the waters opposite the Music Pier off the Moorlyn Terrace Beach and place a wreath to honor and remember the men and women who sacrificed their lives so that we can live free.

Weekend activities begin on May 23, at noon, when the mayor, city officials and lifeguards meet to turn a large wooden key in the sand that officially opens the Ocean. The ceremony is emceed by Fred Miller, a former lifeguard and Ocean City Historian.

The Business Persons Plunge follows the key turning. Excitement builds as the Ocean City High School Band plays Pomp and Circumstance. It rises to a fever pitch when John Walton, Plunge Organizer, leads over one hundred enthusiasts across the sands and into the Ocean.

These include mascots, folks dressed in business attire toting briefcases and others in an array of goofy costumes.  The excitement subsides as the soaked marchers trudge slowly back to the Boardwalk. It is a unique spectacle. 

The Cumberland Regional High School Chorus, directed by Ed Sayre, will serenade plungers and spectators before and after the ceremony. Selections include “Under the Sea,” “Under the Boardwalk” and “Here Comes the Sun.”

On May 17, the Somers Point Jazz Society will provide a prelude to the Big Weekend by presenting a concert featuring Grammy winning Jazz Great, Arturo O’ Farrill and his Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra  at the Music Pier, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace.

O’Farrill is the pianist, composer and director of the group that includes 18 of the world’s most accomplished jazz musicians. The Orchestra’s “Song for Chico,” won a Grammy for Best Jazz Album of the Year in 2008. It has received many Grammy nominations over the years.

Show time is 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 for Somers Point Jazz Society members, $25 for non-members until May 15. Purchase online at www.spjazz.org/shop, email info@spjazz.org or call 609-927-6677. Tickets will be available at the door at $25 for Society members and $30 for non-members.

On May 24, Pianist-performer Linda Gentille will star in a patriotic program with the Jersey Shore Pops Orchestra at 7 p.m. in the Music Pier Auditorium, Boardwalk and Moorlyn Terrace.

This Memorial Day Weekend Concert, “America,” is a tribute to “the great American heroes who inspired millions.” Enjoy the music of John Philip Sousa, Glenn Miller, Lee Greenwood, George Gershwin, Irving Berlin and George M. Cohan.

Tickets are $25-$40, Children $20. Call 609-628-4544, 1-800-838-3006 or access www.JerseyShorePops.org.

On May 24, another patriotic event, the 2014 “Standup4SEALS Get in the Fight” Beach Challenge on the 8th Street Beach is a race that includes three simultaneous events for either teams or individuals.

These are: The Stand Up and Paddle Ocean City Challenge, a Seal Team approved Obstacle Course Challenge and a Kids Fun run. There will also be a Patriot’s Ceremony to honor our veterans and fallen warriors.

All proceeds benefit One Team One Fight, an official charity of the Navy Seals Foundation and the Travis Manion Foundation.  All activities start on the 8th Street Beach at 7:30 a.m.

Interested teams and individuals should access registration information at www.StandUP4SEALS.com or call 609-228-5770.


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