For Marcus’s fifth birthday, we celebrated with the grandparents in several small sessions of candles, cake, and singing. But instead of a big party this year, Marcus agreed to a trip to Ocean City. As we looked at the weather Friday evening, we saw that the predicted high of 61 wasn’t budging, as we had hoped it might. We were afraid that 61 and windy all day on the beach would weary our little guys, so we looked around for some alternate activities. And that’s how we found out about Harbor Day at the Docks, the funnest and free-est autumn event I’ve ever attended!
Instead of cording off the area with an orange net fence or something equally practical and ugly, the organizers fenced off the entire area with enormous arrangements of crates, cages, bikes, ropes, buoys and lots and LOTS of mums. I was charmed.
Poor Joshua wasn’t feeling well so he investigated for less than 5 minutes, then stayed in the stroller or our arms the rest of the day.
I overheard a conversation later in the day in which the participants were commenting that there was “something for everyone” at the event. Indeed, this sign says it all :-)
There truly was *everything* a child could want. Prizes and candy, a moon bounce, and lots of crafts.
The kids brought home large conch shells, miniature stuffed toys, painted t-shirts, and fish and shell crafts. There was also a huge educational component to the day. We all held horseshoe crabs, saw a shark’s mouth, toured a coast guard boat, and petted a sand shark. The organizer’s had also put together a scavenger hunt of questions to ask the fishermen – I was just amazed by both the organization and friendliness of the event!!!
When it was time for lunch, we just sat in (or on!) the back of the truck. We headed back into the festival to pick up our dried crafts and stopped by the facepainting booth. I also had to take just a couple more pictures of the decorations that so enamored me :-)
By the time we made it onto the beach, the sun was peeking through a little bit and it was the warmest part of the afternoon. Warm enough to go into the ocean… or not! :-) Well, perfect for building sand castles, running in the sand, and holding my sweet sleeping baby.
After so much sleep and some Advil, Joshua awoke to eat an enormous dinner and to play for just a few minutes again. The other two rode bikes until it was just too chilly to be outside any longer.
A little outlet shopping a mile up the road, two steaming hot cups of coffe, ice cream in the boy’s stomachs… and they were out. John and I enjoyed a lovely talk together on the way home. A perfect day. I am so blessed.