Fun Trumps Everything
The philosophy and times of Carol Everhart.
(page 1 of 4)
Twenty-one years ago, Rehoboth Beach was suffering from a seriously bum shoulder.
The weeks between Memorial Day and Labor Day bustled with summer visitors—all shorts and flip-flops and ice cream cones up and down the boardwalk. Sun, surf and sand made a natural recipe for success. But when the weather began to cool, the kids returned to school and their parents hunkered down in their suburban hibernations, the shoulder season began. Rehoboth Beach—along with its kid brother Dewey—felt the pain.
Save for their locals, Rehoboth and Dewey became positively ghostly. Officials knew something had to be done to lure visitors back. They had to fix that damned bum shoulder.
So in 1989 the Rehoboth-Dewey Chamber of Commerce advertised for someone to plan and produce an event that could draw visitors who never thought they’d find themselves on the coast of Sussex County after their white pants had been mothballed for the year.
“Back then, everyone was fond of saying that you could roll a bowling ball down Rehoboth Avenue the day after Labor Day,” says Carol Everhart.
Everhart had coordinated everything from kids’ parties to weddings. She’d done some creative consulting for local corporations and had worked with tourism officials in Ocean City, Maryland. So she found the idea of planning an event for Rehoboth and Dewey intriguing.
Everhart met with the chamber’s executive committee. She presented her portfolio, explained her qualifications. The committee was impressed. “So I asked them what their budget was.”
And now Everhart begins to chuckle.
Page 2: Fun Trumps Everything, continues...