Jun 6, 201202:00 AMCup of Joe
Your weekly dose of strange parenting news, trends, and polls
What makes a family-friendly beach?
As you read this, I’ll likely be on my honeymoon soaking up some rays at Myrtle Beach, S.C. I haven’t been to Myrtle Beach in about 15 years—our family usually opts for Ocean City, Md.—but this trip got me thinking about our trip last year to Ocean City.
Did you know that Ocean City didn’t make the cut in the U.S. Travel News Top 10 list of East Coast family beaches this year? Now, don’t get me wrong, our trip to Ocean City was very enjoyable with warm weather and sprawling beaches, but what happened to all of the local boardwalk shops?
In years past, I remember plenty of the usual tourist traps selling cheesy key chains, T-shirts and hermit crabs. But almost every shop on the boardwalk is now littered with offensive clothing, drug and alcohol paraphernalia—and most of these shops blare vulgar music to boot.
One experience in particular really struck home the situation. As we meandered through one of the less offensive boutiques, a salesperson walked over and asked if we needed any help. We said no, but the salesperson never moved away. Every step we took, she followed us never standing more than three feet away. Clearly the salesperson was concerned about us stealing merchandise from her shop.
I don’t think we looked like shady characters, so I can only assume shoplifting must happen there quite often.
Maybe Ocean City isn’t as family friendly as it used to be. Or maybe I’m just over-reacting. The rides at the end of the boardwalk are still lots of fun for kids and many of the shops along the Costal Highway still contain fun and interesting knick-knacks.
What do you think? Do you enjoy vacationing in Ocean City? Do you prefer to visit a different beach? Share your feelings with us in our comments section below: