While Labor Day has passed and most pools have closed, the beaches of Ocean City aren’t quite yet done for the summer season as Sunfest draws near.Temperatures have fallen as autumn slowly approaches, this year’s Sunfest will provide a great opportunity to have one last warm weather weekend of fun on the beautiful shores of Ocean City. This time of year, beach hotels are a little cheaper as the dog days of summer have subsided and schools have reopened, yet the summer hasn’t quite ended and those lucky enough to be enjoying it will soon be able to enjoy what is arguably Ocean City’s best outdoor event. Like most warm weather outdoor festivals, the main attraction of Ocean City’s Sunfest is the music. On the first day of Sunfest, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy will be kicking things off. The swing revival group will be followed up by country star Clint Black on Friday night and 1980’s pop artist Christopher Cross on Saturday night. While the four-day festival is free to attend, guests must purchase tickets to see the musical headliners. Those short on cash can still enjoy music free of charge on Sunday as the Beatles cover band Beatlemania closes out the festival with their free set on Sunday afternoon.
Beyond the music, Sunfest will welcome hundreds of artists from across the country. Festival goers will have the chance to buy homemade arts and crafts and enjoy presentations, while chowing down on foods brought by over more than 30 different vendors. No matter what kind of food is your favorite, Sunfest will have it all. Everything from crabs and seafood to gyros, to Pit BBQ and Asian foods, to the usual boardwalk food spots selling fries, cotton candy and more. If you plan to go but don’t go to Ocean City often, you may be surprised that the ocean water is rather warm during September. In fact, it may be even warmer than during midsummer, water temperatures in the region peak during the second week of September. The festival’s venue, the Intel Lot, is right on the beach so you'll want to bring your swim gear. All-day shuttle transportation from the Roland E. Powell Convention Center to the venue is available for just $3. Parking at the Convention Center is free, and shuttles leave every half hour from the south lot, starting at 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. Free parking and shuttle service are also available at the Northside Park on 125th street, Ocean City’s Park and Ride Location on Route 50 and the Municipal Lot on 100th street. While the festival is one last summer hurrah, it's also an opportunity to enjoy what the town of Ocean City has to offer. The boardwalk is largely open when Sunfest takes place each year, so if you want to hit up a nightclub or restaurant, most places are still open and rather busy. But, if nightlife’s not your thing, bring your kite or frisbee, hit up mini golf or head up the road to the town of Berlin where art will be displayed and free concerts will be held as part of the annual Fiddlers Convention and Paint Berlin Plein Air festivals.