1) An Olympic kickoff. While the majority of the action takes place on Saturday, April 13, the folks at Tri-State Basset Hound Rescue will host a Basset Olympics from noon to 3 p.m. on Friday, April 12, at the Ocean City Tabernacle. The afternoon will feature a lineup of lumbering, questionably trained, flop-eared hound dogs all waddling their way through a series of Olympic events including a 10-meter sprint, 15-meter hurdles, high jump (set at 6″ to start) and an obstacle course. Gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded to the winners. The tabernacle is located at 550 Wesley Ave. in Ocean City. For more info, go to TriStateBassets.org.
2) Oh Doo-Dah Day. This year’s Doo Dah Parade starts noon Saturday, April 13, and travels in a sort of loop down Asbury Avenue from 6th Street to 12th Street then heads to the boardwalk, ending in front of the Ocean City Music Pier. Dozens of floats, marching bands and a small army of Basset Hounds will again be part of the festivities. The 2019 parade’s grand marshal is Barbara Eden, who starred in the popular 1960s sitcom “I Dream of Jeannie.”
3) Beloved Bassets are back. Probably the most peculiar part of Ocean City’s Doo Dah Parade — and certainly among its most anticipated — is the BoardWaddle, which features hundreds of Basset Hounds waddling their way down the boardwalk, many decked out in their springtime finery. The biggest contingent of dogs entering the parade comes from the South Jersey-based Tri-State Basset Hound Rescue. The grand marshal of the BoardWaddle is Quincy, a Basset Hound whose owners, Brian and Annika Francis, have been attending the BoardWaddle since 2010, and have been among Tri-State’s biggest contributors over the years. See TriStateBassets.org for more.
4) Great Egg Hunt in the sand. A huge Easter-egg hunt for children ages 7 and under will take place 2:30 p.m. Saturday on the beaches between 11th and 14th streets. The Great Egg Hunt features five age groups searching for more than 100,000 eggs stuffed with candy and items from local merchants, and hidden in the sand. Go to OCNJ.us/Events2019 or call 609-525-9300.
5) Contest for cultivated gentlemen. Nine men age 55 and older will compete for the 2019 Mr. Mature America crown in categories such as talent, poise and appearance, and on-stage questions. The reigning champion is 66-year-old Bill Quain of Ocean City. Judges for this year’s pageant are Ms. New Jersey Senior America 2018 Suzie Neustadter, Miss New Jersey 2012 Lindsey Ann Petrosh, and Mike Richman, co-host of the “Mike & Diane” morning show on WAYV-FM 95.1. The only contest of its kind in the country, the Mr. Mature America Pageant is 7 p.m. Saturday at the Ocean City Music Pier. Tickets are $25 to $30 and available at OceanCityVacation.com or by calling 609-399-6111.