Line-Up of Rehoboth Bear Activities Will Have the Bears Lining Up for Fun
The bears are coming back to the beach! More than two hundred gay men, many of them with facial hair, will be running around downtown Rehoboth Beach over the weekend of September 21-24, 2017. This third annual “Rehoboth Beach Bears Weekend” is an event put on by the Rehoboth Beach Bears, a local non-profit organization that seeks to nurture a sense of community in our world. One way to do that is through social events that bring people together and build friendships. This year’s Bear Weekend has plenty of opportunities to do just that! This year’s line-up of Bear Activities truly has something for everyone!
Thursday, September 21
Seven o’clock marked the start of a “Meet and Greet” cocktail reception (or, since this is a bear activity, it should more accurately be called a “Growl and Prowl”). The fun started in the Great Room of the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center, where out-of-town bears had a chance to decompress after their travels to Rehoboth Beach…and the local bears helped make them feel at home. Participants were introduced to this year’s Master of Ceremonies, Joe Thomas, everyone’s favorite flight attendant, comedian, and author of Fasten Your Seatbelts and Eat Your F*cking Nuts.
The fun then moved to The Pond for Bear Bingo. Our local bears are quite familiar with The Pond, which is the home of our monthly FURst Friday gatherings. Joe Thomas and DJ Sharon Messina called the numbers, and afterwards Sharon continued the fun spinning tunes for Dancing Bears until the early morning hours.
Friday, September 22
Most of the day is free for the bears to explore downtown Rehoboth Beach…and to take advantage of Special Bear Discounts from participating merchants. When not shopping, the bears will be hitting the sand in front of the Atlantic Sands hotel (our host hotel) for Bears on Baltimore Beach Day. Volunteers are already lined up to help apply suntan lotion on the backs of any single bears in the group. Look for the bear flags!
The bears will celebrate the end of the workweek with a Bear Happy Hour at Aqua Grill from 3-6 p.m. They will sip cocktails and hang out on Aqua’s bear-sized outdoor patio on Baltimore Avenue.
Friday night is all about dancing! The Atlantic Sands will be the venue for a BEARable Prom, a prom-themed party with snacks, spiked punch, and the crowning of a Prom King and Queen. Saturday’s comedian Matteo Lane will be the host, ably assisted by Rehoboth’s own Anna Rexia. Philadelphia’s premier DJ Carl Michaels will be working the turntable and supply the tunes. The dancing starts at 7 p.m.
The After-Prom Party will be held at Cooter Brown’s Twisted Southern Kitchen & Bourbon Bar, on the corner of Rehoboth Avenue and First Street. The bears will avail themselves of late night bites from any of Cooter’s delicious southern dishes.
Saturday, September 23
Every bear wants to be “smarter than the average bear,” in the words of cartoon favorite Yogi Bear. For early risers on Saturday morning, the “Build a Better Bear Workshops” will include a yoga session taught by Reber Whitner. His session is called “Stiff Man Yoga” and is especially designed for men who may never have tried yoga before.
It’s back to the sand and the surf for Bears at Gordon’s Pond, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. A shuttle bus will take the bears to Cape Henlopen State Park (North Shores) for a beach party, complete with lunch, refreshments, and beach games. This event was a new one in 2016 and was brought back by overwhelming demand.
The beach can sure take it out of you, so it will be Bears in the Biergarten at the Purple Parrot from 3-6 p.m. You can bet there will be lots of photo opportunities with the bear statue that keeps watch over the biergarten year round.
Bears are well-equipped to share some belly laughs with one another, and there will be plenty of that with Saturday night’s comedy show in the Great Room at CAMP Rehoboth. Comedian Matteo Lane will be tickling their funny bones as he performs his stand-up comedy routine. Matteo has appeared on “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” as well as several shows on Comedy Central. Opening for Matteo will be Joe Thomas, with shows at 7 and 9 p.m.
Finishing out the day is a Late Night Bar Crawl at Aqua Grill, starting at 10 p.m. Fortunately Aqua is less than a block away from CAMP Rehoboth, so the bears will not have far to crawl.
Sunday, September 24
The last day of the weekend begins with a Bear Art Show and Brunch from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center. Sal Seeley has curated an exhibit that celebrates the art of the bear. Art admirers will be sipping on mimosas and bloody Mary’s, and nibbling on bagels, as they enjoy the sights.
Everything wraps up with a Closing Party in the Purple Parrot’s Biergarten, which will be named the BEARgarten for the final hours of the weekend. Food and drinks will be on sale, and the Rehoboth Beach Bears will be giving away door prizes, including a free Full Run Pass for the 2018 Bear Weekend.
Full Run Pass Holders get access and VIP treatment at all events. However, many of the events are open to the public, who can buy individual event tickets a la carte. For more information and for prices, check the Bears webpage at Rehoboth BeachBears.com.