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OPA signs point toward celebration

By Josh Davis, Associate Editor

(Jan. 11, 2018) With many of the surrounding streets and sidewalks still covered in snow and ice, Ocean Pines officials on Tuesday unveiled a new entrance sign on Cathell Road commemorating the 50th anniversary of the association.

The ceremony was rescheduled from its original date of last Saturday.

The sign featured a new logo created by resident Lisa Perez, who won an association-wide design contest in June.

Jennifer Cropper-Rines, chairwoman of the 50th Anniversary Committee, opened the ceremony by thanking event chairpersons for planning, public works staff for installing signs at all three community entranceways, and the board of directors and staff for their support.

She said Boise Cascade created the community in 1968.

“From what I understand, they were boating people over here from Ocean City, driving people over here from Ocean City, and they really had a vision,” Cropper-Rines said. “They dug the canals, they built the amenities, and it’s really turned into a wonderful place that houses 12,000 year-round residents and 8,000 summer people.

“I don’t know if they ever anticipated we could be that big,” she added.

Association President Doug Parks said it was a wonderful experience to be part of such a seminal event.

“Thanks to all those who are putting this together,” he said, adding a “series of wonderful events” were planned throughout the year.

Parks credited volunteers with helping realize plans for the anniversary.

“That’s what it takes to get events like this to happen … people taking their time who care about the community, who want to contribute,” he said. “Hopefully, throughout the year we’ll have successes in running all these events.”

Mediacom Director of Area Operations Pat Hynes was also introduced during the ceremony. The internet and cable company is the first platinum sponsor of the 50th anniversary.

Hynes said Mediacom aggressively invests in the communities it serves, including a three-year, $1 billion capital investment made in 2016. The company serves about three million homes across 22 states, he said.

“We appreciate the opportunity to serve you here,” he said. “On behalf of Mediacom, I would like to extend our congratulations on your 50th anniversary and thank you for letting us be part of this momentous occasion.”

General Manager John Bailey closed the ceremony with a prepared speech.

“Congratulations, Ocean Pines,” he said. “Fiftieth anniversaries are celebratory times that provide the opportunity to do three things: one, to give thanks and to remember; two, to celebrate, congratulate and to party; and three, to encourage and instill hope.”

Bailey thanked staff, founding residents, board and committee members and volunteers who served “during our first 50 years.”

“Congratulations to those who make Ocean Pines what it is – a great place to live, a great place to work, a great place to work in and around, and a great place to play,” he said. “And congratulations as well to the county and the state, for Ocean Pines is indeed an asset to the larger community around us.

“And here’s to the future. May it be said 50 years from now that we here today were responsible for recommitting ourselves to a vision of being the best place to live on the Eastern Shore,” he added.

Also during the ceremony, Worcester County Commissioner Chip Bertino, on behalf of Sen. Jim Mathias, presented a citation from the Maryland Senate.

Additional plans for the semicentennial celebration include an anniversary license plate event on March 24, parade and community day on June 2, golf tournament on June 30, 5k run on July 4, beach bash on July 22, time capsule opening and cocktail reception on Aug. 11, racquet sports tournament on Aug. 18 and winter gala on Nov. 10.

Sponsorships for several of the events as well as the overall anniversary are available, ranging from platinum levels at $5,000, to “Friends of Ocean Pines” starting at $50.

Gold level sponsorships are $3,000, silver are $1,500 and patron/bronze are $500.

Larger, corporate sponsors will receive benefits, including prominent listing on 50th anniversary save-the-date rack cards, entry into the 50th anniversary parade and plaques and banners to be displayed during events, among other perks.

For more details, visit or contact Sawyer at 410-641-7717 ext. 3006 or email