• February 17, 2020

Earlier Than The Bird brings out the shoppers - Ocean City Sentinel: News

Earlier Than The Bird brings out the shoppers

They get to shop wearing their pajamas and a wide variety of costumes

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Posted: Wednesday, November 27, 2019 10:39 am

OCEAN CITY – Halloween is known for its costumes. 

Ocean City, however, welcomes the holiday season by encouraging shoppers to enjoy a day in its downtown wearing pajamas, and, in some cases, dressed as reindeer, elves, snowmen and wrapped presents. 

Saturday, Nov. 23, was the annual Earlier Than The Bird pre-Black Friday shopping event along Asbury Avenue in Ocean City. 

The event, sponsored by the Ocean City Downtown Merchants Association, encourages people to shop in Ocean City in their pajamas.  Shoppers had a chance to win prizes and gift certificates and were treated to free coffee. 

The stores along Asbury Avenue, from Sixth to 11th streets, participated. 

Complimentary horse and carriage rides, which are held in Ocean City for several weeks, also began last weekend.

Laura Baisas and some of her family members planned for about a year and coordinated matching pajamas to attend Earlier Than The Bird.

The group’s members are originally from the Ocean City-area but are now spread throughout Washington, D.C., Newport, R.I., and New York City. 

“It’s a really fun way to kick off the holidays,” Baisas said.  “We like being together and sometimes if it’s just for one day, that’s not enough, so this was a way to do another holiday thing before the actual day.”

For their first time shopping in pajamas, the group wore matching headbands and necklaces that looked like a strand of Christmas lights, matching pajama bottoms with palm trees on them and shirts that said, ‘holidays are better in flip flops.”

Baisas said the first morning in August when the weather was a bit cool, she went online and searched for the pajamas. 

“It just seemed appropriate,” Baisas said about their matching shirts.

“It’s just comfortable,” Baisas said about shopping in pajamas.  “You don’t need pants with zippers or buttons.  I was in the shower getting ready and I was like, ‘oh, I have to get dressed, and then I realized, no, I don’t.  I get to get right back into my pajamas.”

Patty Wacker was among a group of 15 friends and family members who have attended Earlier Than The Bird for the last six years. 

Wacker, who lives in Philadelphia and has a house in Ocean City, said the group grows every year. 

On Nov. 23, the group dressed in reindeer onesies.  In past years, they dressed as snowmen, Santa Claus, elves, in one case, a Christmas tree, and last year, they wore redneck onesies. 

“It’s a lot of fun,” she said.  “It’s a good reason to start the holidays, making memories with your family and friends.”

On whether they found any good deals, Wacker said they had already been to the car twice to drop off gifts they purchased. 

For Lisa Peteraf and her daughter, Lizzie Peteraf, the event is now a mother/daughter tradition. 

“We look forward to coming and dressing up and enjoying just strolling,” Lisa Peteraf, of Ocean City, said. 

They found out about the event about three years ago, and haven’t missed a year since.   

Their tradition includes wearing pajamas, which they coordinate in advance. 

This year, they were outfitted in matching onesies with reindeer and Christmas trees on them, matching white winter hats, and matching slippers. 

“The sales are good, but it puts you in the holiday mood where it’s nice just to stroll, even if you’re just window shopping,” she said. 

“It’s a great start to the holiday season, getting into the Christmas mood,” Lizzie Peteraf said. 

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