Our Region: Welcome to Salisbury!
Whether you study or work here, you’ll find that this is the place to be. The community and region that surround Salisbury University offer wide-ranging opportunities for residents and visitors, alike!
City of Salisbury
Known as “Maryland’s Coastal College Town,” the City of Salisbury has long been the crossroads of the historic Delmarva Peninsula. With a population of some 30,000, it’s the largest city on the Eastern Shore and the No. 1 fastest growing city in Maryland, according to city officials. Founded in 1732 and incorporated in 1854, it also is the county seat for Wicomico. The area offers the ideal mix of an urban center, nestled within a scenic rural region, centrally located to major metropolitan areas.
In 2021-22, U.S. News & World Report named Salisbury to its list of “150 Best Places to Live in the U.S.” The city was No. 95 on that list, as well as No. 26 on the "best places to retire" list, No. 16 on the "fastest-growing places" list and No. 20 on the "safest places to live" list. The publication said: “It is a melting pot of college students, retirees and families who might all be seen together enjoying a Saturday night at a microbrewery or watching a minor-league baseball game.” And, the median sales price for a single-family home in Salisbury is lower than the national average.
Located just two miles from campus, Downtown Salisbury is a designated Main Street Maryland community, with shops, restaurants and events. You can get downtown via bike, car or even kayak! A trolley service runs between SU and downtown during the semester. The Salisbury Arts and Entertainment District’s popular 3rd Friday celebrations are held monthly.
SU has been a partner in reinvigorating downtown Salisbury. The SU Art Galleries – Downtown Campus opened there in 2013. The Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative relocated to SU’s Plaza Gallery Building in 2018, followed by a multi-million dollar Entrepreneurship Center in 2020.
Wicomico County and the Eastern Shore
Situated perfectly between the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay, Wicomico County offers outdoor adventures, Eastern Shore food, culture and history, and an affordable cost of living. With a population of some 102,000, the county has over 60 restaurants, 20 shopping centers and various accommodations to suit your needs. Wicomico County Tourism is a hub for things to see and do.
The Eastern Shore region is steeped in the rich heritage of the Chesapeake region, from Native Americans to the traditions of watermen. SU helps preserve this history the Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture, home to some of the nation’s oldest genealogical records. Visitors often enjoy the nearby historic towns of Snow Hill, Berlin, Cambridge, and Easton.
SU is one of Wicomico County’s largest employers. A 2016 study showed that SU contributes nearly a half billion dollars annually to the region’s economy. Among our community partners are:
- TidalHealth Peninsula Regional – an award-winning hospital and medical system
- Wicomico County Public Schools – the Lower Shore’s biggest district with dedicated educators serving some 15,000 students at 26 learning centers
- Perdue Farms – one of the nation’s largest agribusiness companies headquartered in Salisbury
- Wor-Wic Community College – a local two-year institution
- University of Maryland Eastern Shore – a University of System Maryland sister campus in Princess Anne
- Wicomico Public Libraries
- Nonprofits including the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore and United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore
- Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce, Greater Salisbury Committee, and Salisbury-Wicomico Economic Development
- Civic organizations including the Salisbury Jaycees, Salisbury Optimist Club and three Rotary clubs
There are numerous area attractions for students, parents and families. The Arthur W. Perdue Stadium is home to the Delmarva Shorebirds Class A baseball team. The Salisbury Zoological Park is recognized as one of the best small zoos in America. History lovers enjoy the Poplar Hill Mansion, Newtown Historic District, Pemberton Historical Park, and Whitehaven Ferry. Fresh produce and regional specialties abound at the weekly Camden Avenue Farmers Market. Beyond the city, the region is home to the Delmarva Discovery Center and Museum, NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility and the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.
The Eastern Shore is known for its accessibility to waterways, beaches and nature, as well as its slower pace with less traffic and congestion. Salisbury is situated directly on the Wicomico River, a popular waterway for boaters and kayakers, along with the Manokin and Nanticoke rivers. All lead to the nearby Chesapeake Bay, the nation’s largest estuary and a hub for environmental research. The city boasts the second largest water port in Maryland, plus boat ramps and marinas.
Wicomico County Recreation and Parks offers over 50 parks and outdoor facilities. There are more than 1,500 acres to hike, bike, play, relax and explore the area’s natural beauty. An active community, Salisbury hosts events from the SBY Marathon to SU’s own Sea Gull Century bike ride. The nearby Atlantic Ocean is dotted with popular beaches and vacation destinations from Ocean City, MD, and Assateague National Seashore, to the Delaware beaches of Fenwick, Bethany, Rehoboth, Lewes and Cape Henlopen.
The campus is a cultural center for the region, offering a robust roster of exhibits, lectures, performing arts and other events – many of which are free. (Check out our cultural events magazine Panorama for a quick overview of recent and upcoming events.) Live music ranges from the Salisbury Symphony Orchestra, to chorales and the Salisbury Pops, to guest artists of all genres. The SU Dance Company and Bobbi Biron Theatre Program each stage several productions annually, along with the Community Players of Salisbury. In addition, SU is home to Wicomico’s Public Access Television station (PAC 14) and two National Public Radio affiliates: 89.5 FM and 90.7 FM. In Downtown Salisbury, you will find the Salisbury Art Space, offering exhibits and art education programs, and the Salisbury Wicomico Arts Council.