Night stroll on OC beach allowed

June 26, 2008 3:43:03 PM PDT
In Ocean City, you are welcomed to walk on the boardwalk at night, but the beach was a different story. When the sun goes down and the crowds leave, imagine a romantic moonliight stroll or sitting on the beach stargazing in the dark.

For years, that's been off-limits in Ocean city which has a 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew in effect to keep people off the beach. But that's about to change.

However, in order to get the state to pick up three-fourths of the $7 million beach replenishment project last month, Ocean City has agreed to permit beach access around the clock.

"That's something that we pretty much had anyway, even though the ordinance prohibited it; as a practical matter, people were not getting arrested for taking a walk on the beach at night," Mayor Sam Perillo of Ocean City said.

All day, all night beach access begins as soon as city council repeals the curfew at its meeting tonight. But the ban on booze, noise and nighttime swimming will continue and the police say they will be watching with extra patrols.

"We definitely want to put this out as a safety issue. Even thought the beaches are open, you're not allowed to swim in the water at any of the beaches," Sgt. Dennis Ryan of the Ocean City Police said.

So after the council votes, there will be more access to the beach and with it concerns about safety.