OCEAN CITY – Grab a drink, watch the sunset and take up the free opportunity to try out Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) with OC SUP & Fitness at Fager’s Island on Thursday evenings during happy hour.

The Pacifico Paddle Party kicked off last Thursday evening during Fager’s Island happy hour. The event will take place every Thursday from 5-9 p.m. where OC SUP & Fitness and Fager’s Island will be hosting free paddleboard sessions from the pier and gazebo. Happy Hour specials will be offered, including $3.50 Pacifico beers, which include one free raffle ticket to win a beach cruiser.

Entertainment will also be happening simultaneously on the deck. Last week The Bullbuckers performed and in the weeks to come entertainment will be provided by various bands, such as Rob Fahey and Nate Clendenen.

Fager’s Island General Manager Kevin Myers explained it was three years ago when Fager’s partnered with OC SUP & Fitness owner Dawn Ehman to bring the restaurant’s view and atmosphere together with  the sport of paddleboarding.

“Paddleboarding has really taken off and it is a perfect thing for us here at Fager’s because we have the perfect set up for it with the natural beauty of the bay … it is such a cool visual,” Myers said. “You could have nothing to do with paddleboarding but you’re sitting at the bar having a drink and enjoying the sunset, and when the paddleboarders go by it has a timeless quality to it that is enjoyable … so we are trying to accomplish both of those things, something for people to enjoy but also something for people to come and try out.”

Ehman has worked in the fitness industry for the past 23 years and three years ago she decided to expand her skills from land to water.

OC SUP & Fitness operates out of two locations, Fager’s Island off the pier and at Ehman’s Yoga studio, YogaVibez, in Ocean Creek Plaza where SUP takes place on Herring Creek.

At Fager’s Island, OC SUP & Fitness operates seven days a week being weather dependent and is for all ages. Ehman has had paddled with all ages, sometimes as young as 6 to 80.

“It’s very easy,” Ehman said. “If you have never been able to surf, this is the next best thing.”

Besides rentals and lessons, OC SUP & Fitness provides a number of classes. There is Paddle Pilates and Flowga, which uses the paddleboard as a yoga mat, and combines SUP with yoga routines on the water to develop better balance, coordination and strength by linking breathing to poses.

Other classes include SUP Total Body Workout that combines paddling, plyometrics and strength training, and incorporates high intensity intervals with low intensity recovery periods, as well as Core Paddle that fuses yoga, pilates and strength training to challenge the midsection and increase body balance and muscle tone.

Ehman also hosts two SUP races a year. The first, Surf Swap, was held on June 2 at Fager’s Island and included a five-mile, 2.5-mile, and a team and kids SUP race. The next race is coming up in August and will include a six-mile, three-mile and kids SUP race.

OC SUP & Fitness has also taken on birthday parties, bachelorette parties, anniversaries, girl’s night out and even paddle bar crawls. Ehman and Myers invite anyone seeking more information on SUP to attend one of this summer’s Thursday parties.