OCEAN CITY – Every year the Dew Tour has something up their sleeves to add a new spark to the returning event, and this time around elements have been added to incorporate more interaction between the public and professional athletes, showcasing the culture and lifestyle of the skate world.

On Wednesday morning, both Dew Tour and city officials met at the Dew Tour Experience that is centered in the event’s site between Dorchester and Somerset streets on the beach to kick off the Dew Tour Beach Championships in Ocean City. The event is being held through June 23.

Following the opening ceremony, athletes filed in to sign-in and begin practice. From there, the Dew Tour experience opened with activated, free merchandise giveaways and athlete signings that will go on throughout the weekend.

“I can’t tell you how excited we are to have Dew Tour back here in Ocean City,” Mayor Rick Meehan said. “It has become a featured event here in Ocean City and I can’t think of a better location to have the Dew Tour other than here on the wide beach of Ocean City.”

This is the third summer the Dew Tour has returned to Ocean City, each year becoming bigger and better and more interactive.

“We have a much larger presence of interactive areas for young kids to come in and skate and ride BMX,” Dew Tour General Manager Kenny Mitchell said.

Mitchell pointed out the Mongoose BMX pump track in the center of the Dew Tour Experience and the new Street Session section.

“We are bringing street skating and BMX to the beach,” he said.

The Street Session section will be featured on Saturday afternoon when the Battle at the Beach Session kicks off with a BMX contest and on Saturday night with a skate contest for both the public and professional athletes to participate, including Ryan Decenzo, Greg Lutzka and Manny Santiago.  The Battle at the Beach Session’s skate contest will be lit up with a live set from DJ Stimulus where the energy will spill over into the concert that night.

Live entertainment will begin on Friday with New Politics who combine everything from breakdancing to guitar solos for a punk-pop-dance rock party. Columbia Records electro-punk trio Krewella will headline.

Talib Kweli, who recently released his fifth solo album Prisoner of Conscious, will hit the Dew Tour stage on Saturday with the socially aware lyrics and dramatic beats that made him one of hip-hop’s most successful underground acts of the last 20 years.

“Another new piece this year is we are looking to showcase lifestyle and culture,” Mitchell said. “Here in Ocean City we are going to do the Recognize Art event where we have an art gallery down the road recognizing action sport inspired art. Dew Tour is more than the really cool tricks. It is the lifestyle, the culture, and the fashion, and we want to showcase that.”

Dew Tour Recognize is a series of events that will celebrate the lifestyle and cultural elements of action sports, including art, photography and film.  On Saturday, Dew Tour Recognize will celebrate progressive and transcendent artwork from industry legends and local artists including Steve Caballero, Neil Blender, Christian Hosoi, Chris Markovich and Matt Dove.  Dew Tour Recognize will take place in Berlin and is open to the public.  More information is available at www.DewTour.com.

“This is our largest event at an attendance standpoint,” Mitchell said. “Last year we had well over 90,000 people, which is a Dew Tour record, and we are crossing our fingers we will continue that trend. With so many people coming through, we want to make sure we have available access and make sure people have a good time.”