40+ New Reasons to Visit Southern Delaware in 2018

By tinac on

When you visit Southern Delaware in 2018, you'll find new activities, tours, events, restaurants and lots more! Of course, everything you've always loved about Southern Delaware awaits as well.

Here, in no particular order, are more than 40 brand new – and a few new-ish! - reasons to visit Southern Delaware in 2018...

EVENTS & ACTIVITIES

Inaugural Fire & Ice Festival, Downtown Bethany Beach, January 26-28. Experience the Quiet Resorts as you never have before at the Inaugural Fire & Ice Festival in downtown Bethany Beach! Trade your beach cruiser for your ice skates for a family-friendly weekend full of winter festivities, including an ice sculpture tour and live sculpture demonstration, ice skating rink, beach bonfire, and — of course — a seasonal stop at your favorite shops, restaurants, and businesses. For the complete schedule of events and more information, visit www.FireandIceDE.com.

Monster Truck Racing at Georgetown Speedway: For the first time, the Monster Truck Racing League invades Georgetown Speedway for the two-day ‘Monster Truck Madness’ Friday and Saturday evenings July 6 - 7. Four professional Monster Trucks will be in action including the nationally recognized ‘BIGFOOT’ as seen on television! Additionally the exciting Tough Trucks will perform for the crowd. There will be giveaways, a pre-show Meet & Greet and post-show Autograph Session plus great food served by Fat Daddy’s BBQ! (If you haven’t eaten Fat Daddy’s BBQ, you haven’t lived. Seriously.)

Coastal Kayak: In 2018 Coastal Kayak will offer Adult Sailing Clinics at the Beach. Participants will learn a centuries-old skill that is the perfect way to explore the inland bays of coastal Delaware and discover how easy it is to skim across the water using only the wind. Three-session adult sailing clinics will teach participants basic sailing terminology, how to read the wind, how to set, manage, and adjust the sails, and the rules of the nautical road. The first session will be held in a classroom, followed by a cocktail hour to get to know your fellow sailors. The second and third sessions will be on the water with the instructor where the students will take turns captaining the sailboat. This is a “hands-on” clinic with an emphasis on fun. Students will leave the clinic with a solid skill foundation and the confidence to go out and skipper a small sailboat on their own.

Milton Zombie Fest: Weekend of October 20, 2018: Join the picturesque town of Milton DE for their annual Zombie Fest - haunting entertainment of epic proportions! This is included in our What’s New roundup because something new and scary and fun is added every year to this event… What started as a “Zombie Walk” in 2014 is this year a full blown “Zombie Fest” that will plunge the quaint historic town of Milton into an epicenter of the undead.  A monstrosity of entertainment awaits people of all ages including performers, horror movies, live music and a host of other activities for a weekend that is sure to stir the undead out of their graves. For info, contact the Milton Theatre.

Helicopter Tours: J&J Shop Heliair will be offering scenic helicopter tours of the Delaware beaches and surrounding areas starting in early Spring 2018, departing from the Eagle Crest Airport in Milton.

Shell We Bounce Trampoline Park in Lewes offers indoor fun for kids – and grownups too! Bouncers will find trampoline equipment including regular Trampoline squares, Dodgeball, Basketball Slam Dunk, Wipe-Out, an Air Bag, and a Foam Pit. There’s also a Redemption Center, and the Shell We Eat? Café. Their Kid Zone boasts a huge multilevel climbing structure, soft play area, and an inflatable bounce house.

Escape Reality, steps from the boardwalk in downtown Rehoboth Beach, is a virtual reality arcade that opened in 2017. It offers full-immersion games, worldwide destinations, escape room puzzles and more. Guests enter three-dimensional, computer generated environments which can be explored and interacted with as they’re instantly immersed in all 360 degrees of their environment. 

Out of the Sand has opened in the Midway Shopping Center behind the Roadhouse restaurant, offering three simulators for 40 different golf courses and using cameras and sensors to get an accurate reading on guests’ swings and strokes. Open year round, visitors can play one hole, or an entire eighteen. If golf isn’t their thing, they can try football, soccer, tennis, field hockey, ice hockey, rugby, a putting course, baseball, or foot golf. Open year round.

Mulligan’s Pointe Golf & Community Club (formerly Sussex Pines Country Club) in Georgetown opens to the public this year under new ownership as of February 2018 with an expanded bar, the addition of an outdoor dining area overlooking the course, and a relocated and updated pro shop. Additionally, the club’s two spacious banquet rooms will be renovated and refreshed. Open to the public seven days a week, year round. www.mulliganspointe.com

Escape Rehoboth adds two new themed rooms: Put your mind to the test as you work together to find hidden objects, figure out clues, and solve puzzles to earn your freedom. Located right at the entrance to Rehoboth Beach, they have five uniquely themed rooms, including their two newest additions, Lost Tomb and Cursed. Whether it's escaping Jack the Ripper, participating in a cooking show, or rescuing a magician in trouble, your experience will be memorable.

The Brush Factory on Kings (see below under Arts & Entertainment, too) in Lewes has just added a recreation facility offering indoor heated/air conditioned pickleball courts. Programming will include first-time player introductory courses, lessons and clinics. Not familiar with pickleball? Check it out here.

TOURS

Sun Otter Tours adds new tours to its lineup of guided tours in 2018 including BEACH SCIENCE- Family Fun, with hands-on fun for kids, parents, and grandparents who will learn about coastal science and experience the beach in exciting, innovative ways with cool, fun (and sometimes gross!) experiments. A MARINE SCIENCE tour allows participants to have fun learning about coastal science in small group settings at the beach and in the lab. The BEACH FARM SCIENCE Tour: Lavender, Honey, & Hydroponics, allows participants to discover the rewards and challenges of specialty farming and hydroponics at the beach. The BREWS & BOOZE- Science of Spirits tour invites guests to discover the science behind beach brews, meads, and cocktails at several locations including Dogfish Head Brewery and lab, Brimming Horn Meadery, and Fork and Flask. Participants learn some boozy bioloby, chemistry and physics of alcohol from fermentation to hangovers.

Delmarva Discovery Tours: New in 2018, Delmarva Discovery tours offers three-hour Happy Hour "HOP ON" Brew Tours with visits to two breweries, tastings and snacks. They will also offer local group event transportation packages for groups of up to 14. Enjoy an evening out with a designated driver. DDT also offers family farm tours, history tours, antiquing tours, eco-tours, and more.

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

In Rehoboth Beach just steps from the boardwalk, the extremely popular Clear Space Theatre’s 2018 season offers productions of Baskerville, Bye Bye Birdie, The Wizard of Oz, The Rocky Horror Show, Footloose, Mary Poppins, Heathers, Willy Wonka, and a whole lot more. The historic Milton Theatre, a premier live show venue that features local, regional, and national acts and music, comedy, film, and more, offers a wide-ranging collection of more than 250 shows and performances throughout 2018.  Rehoboth Summer Children’s Theatre’s 2018 season will include presentations of Cinderella, Aladdin, and Androcles and the Lion this year.  

At Possum Hall in Georgetown, the Possum Point Players 2018 Mainstage Season consists of productions including California Suite, Hello Dolly, Lend me a Tenor, Our Town, and It’s a Wonderful Life. At Milford’s Riverfront Theater, the Second Street Players 2018 productions include The 39 Steps, The Elephant Man, Shrek the Musical, Night of the Living Dead, and Miracle on 34th Street. The Freeman Stage at Bayside has not yet released its 2018 lineup but keep an eye out for their announcement March – the lineup is always spectacular. Their 2017 season consisted of performers including national acts like Tedeschi Trucks Band, The Stray Cat Lee Rocker, comedian Jay Leno, The O’Jays, Blues Travelers, The Wallflowers and Better than Ezra, Hunter Hayes, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Sutton Foster, Chicago, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and many more. 

The CUBE, a premium large-format theater has opened at the Movies at Midway.

Dewey Artist Collaboration, a brand new arts co-op and community arts organization, has opened in West Rehoboth.  

In case you missed it, The Brush Factory on Kings in Lewes, new last summer, is home to 45 vendors including artisans, merchants, and architectural salvage. Many of the vendors in the renovated former brush factory are local artisans and crafters. Visitors will find art, vintage and new pieces, sea glass, decoys and much more.

The Rehoboth Beach Film Society in partnership with the Southern Delaware Alliance for Racial Justice is please to present its’ first African American Film Festival, February 16 – 18, 2018. Screenings at their Cinema Art Theater in Lewes will include FRUITVALE STATION on Friday, February 16, THROUGH A LENS DARKLY on Saturday, February 17, BIG WORDS on Saturday, February 17, and 3 ½ MINUTES, 10 BULLETS on Sunday, February 18.

EAT AND DRINK

There’s lots of new deliciousness happening along the Culinary Coast™! Thank goodness the Rehoboth Foodie can be counted on to keep track of all the changes. Here are just a few:

Rehoboth Beach: In downtown Rehoboth this spring, Cuvee Ray, a wine bar/restaurant, will open in the space previously occupied by Pig+Fish on Rehoboth Avenue. Also slated to open this spring is The Pines, a new tavern style restaurant on Baltimore Avenue in the former Hobo's space. Already open is G Cask & Kitchen at 234 Rehoboth Ave. G offers upscale dining, dancing, and DJs as well as Saturday and Sunday brunch.

After more than two decades, the old Dogfish Head Brewings & Eats has come down and the lot will contain a new glass-enclosed merchandise store and a courtyard linking the new Dogfish Head Brewings & Eats with Chesapeake & Maine. Relatively new downtown – and getting great reviews - is Indigo Indian Cuisine. The brand new Azzurro Italian Oven and Bar will open in March in the old Papa Grande's location at the corner of 2nd Street and Wilmington Avenue. Finally, out on the highway hungry visitors will love Myagi Ramen Bar, another recent arrival. Iron Hill Brewery will also open its newest location this year on Coastal Highway near the entrance to Rehoboth Beach

Lewes: Look for Fins Carryout to open on Kings Highway in Lewes. Also Hotdog Johnnie's has opened a second location in Lewes. And Café Azafran has returned to Lewes in the form of Olive & Oats by Azafran. The brand new Station on Kings offers coffee, pastries and cafe fare, including a market stocked with unique kitchen wares, fresh local produce and specialty foods. By the time spring rolls around, they will also have an extensive garden center.

Milton: The Suburban Farmhouse on Federal Street in Milton offers breakfast, lunch, Almond Joy lattes, and fun things for sale created by 12 local artisans. Also in Milton, the Little Brick Cakery is now open in the former Bacchus Wine Bar location on Union Street and offers a variety of cakes that changes with the seasons as well as cookies, cupcakes, and brownies on occasion. Not food related, but Milton recently also welcomed Ogre's Grove a terrific new comics and collectibles store.

Dewey Beach: Gary’s Dewey Beach Grill has added a small brewing system and now rotates six brews from their very own tap handle.  

Millsboro: Millsboro is getting two new eateries; Yellow Fins (around February) & a new Italian restaurant - both in Taormina Square at the intersection of routes 23 and 24.

Also, there’s exciting news from the owners of the extremely popular Eating Rehoboth Walking Food Tours. Because so many of their Friday and Sunday tours were sold out last year, they are adding another day to their tours. Tuesdays will become “New Restaurant Tuesdays" and will mostly feature recently opened restaurants.

PRACTICAL MATTERS

Several Tesla 'Supercharger' charging stations have been installed in Lewes at the WaWa on Coastal Highway.  

A new Park and Ride has opened just south of 5 Points in Lewes offering visitors a 248-space parking area with security cameras, bicycle racks and repair station, and electric car charging stations.

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