Ocean City resident Jackie McLeer took a seat on the trolley with group of Ocean City tourists waiting to depart on the weekly Inn to Inn and Historic Tour around the island.
It was the second week in a row McLeer was taking the Greater Ocean City Chamber of Commerce's weekly trolley tour, which changes its stops week-to-week. She enjoyed the tour so much the week before that she had been looking forward to part two, she said.
"I think people don't really take advantage of their local history, myself included." McLeer said, "So I'm being a tourist in my town today. I've always wanted to see what the history was behind the inns, I walk by them all the time, and I know what they look like from the outside, but I never go in."
Each week the trolley stops at four scheduled sites where tour-goers get off and go inside for a walk-through and a brief history lesson presented by the innkeeper - whom in many cases has saved the building from a wrecking ball - or a site volunteer.
Trolley tour guide Duane Sonneborn, who works for the Chamber, also gives a brief tour of the island, pointing out noteworthy sites and offering factual tidbits as the trolley makes its way through the city.
"I think everyone should take the tour," said Sonneborn, a resident of Ocean City, "I thought I knew it all, but I can't tell you how much I learned from doing this job over the last few years. I guarantee you will learn something. Like here's one. You know why they built the homes a certain height, 27 feet? Because if you're 27 feet from the ground to the top of your window, you can leave your window down without worrying about mosquitos getting you because mosquitoes don't fly higher than 27 feet."
Sonneborn learned that last factoid from John Loeper, co-proprietor of Ocean City's Northwood Inn Bed and Breakfast - built with the mosquito rule in mind - and the chairman of the U.S. Life Saving Station 30, both of which are tour stops.
Loeper said he takes part in sharing the stories of the city's history because it is the only way to preserve them.
"They don't teach it in school anymore, and if we don't tell the stories, it's going to be gone forever," he said.
Contact Elisa Lala:
If you go
Ocean City's 2013 Inn to Inn & Historic Trolley Tours
2-4 p.m. every Thursday through Aug. 29.
Trolley departs from the Ticket Booth at Seventh Street and Central Avenue at 2 p.m. sharp.
$14 per person and includes a guided, informative tour with stops and entrance into four Bed and Breakfasts and/or historical sites. Tickets can be purchased at the Ticket Booth starting at 1:30 p.m. on Thursdays, The Ocean City Welcome Center, on the Rt. 52 Causeway, and the Chamber Office, 14 E. Ninth St. Includes a free parking voucher.
Aug. 1 Schedule:
Ocean City Mansion, Scarborough Inn, Ocean City Historical Museum and Plymouth Inn. Stops change week-to-week. For additional weeks' schedules visit oceancityvacation.com.