Chance, Maryland

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Chance, Maryland
Somerset County Maryland Incorporated and Unincorporated areas Chance Highlighted.svg
Coordinates: 38°10′37″N 75°56′21″W / 38.17694°N 75.93917°W / 38.17694; -75.93917Coordinates: 38°10′37″N 75°56′21″W / 38.17694°N 75.93917°W / 38.17694; -75.93917
Country United States
State Maryland
County Somerset
 • Total 2.6 sq mi (6.7 km2)
 • Land 1.7 sq mi (4.5 km2)
 • Water 0.8 sq mi (2.2 km2)
Elevation 3 ft (1 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total 377
 • Density 218.1/sq mi (84.2/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 21821
Area code(s) 410
FIPS code 24-15075
GNIS feature ID 0595203

Chance is a census-designated place (CDP) in Somerset County, Maryland, United States. The population was 377 at the 2000 census. It is included in the Salisbury, Maryland-Delaware Metropolitan Statistical Area.


The Ida May (skipjack) and Rock Creek Methodist Episcopal Church are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[1]


Chance is located at 38°10′37″N 75°56′21″W / 38.17694°N 75.93917°W / 38.17694; -75.93917 (38.176818, -75.939272).[2]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.6 square miles (6.7 km2), of which, 1.7 square miles (4.4 km2) of it is land and 0.8 square miles (2.1 km2) of it (32.68%) is water.

Deal Island Wildlife Management Area[edit]

Located just before the 1/4 mile bridge leading in to Deal Island proper. The main road in Chance is Deal Island Road. When heading west on Deal Island Road to the right is mostly residential housing w/some commercial property. To the left consists of residential property and the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area.

The Deal Island Wildlife Management Area is the treasure of this area.[according to whom?] The WMA features scenic water vistas of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. It is 13,000 acres.[3] It has over 9 miles[3] of flat trails used by walkers, hikers, off-road cyclists, crabbers, and birdwatchers.

The WMA and Chance, Maryland, are approximately halfway between Salisbury, Maryland, and Chincoteague, Virginia. To get to Chance and the WMA, take Rte 13 in to the Princess Anne, Maryland area then turn on Deal Island Road. Access to the WMA is primarily in five locations along Deal Island Road:

  1. Approximately 8 miles (13 km) in from Rte 13 on Deal Island Road slow down. On the left, look for a gravel road with a dark reddish sign saying the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area. It leads to the west side of the WMA impoundment (lake) area with a boat ramp. Primarily, small boat owners launch from this area. It is a popular spot for walkers, hikers, and birdwatchers too.
  2. The Messick Road public boat ramp area[4] in Dames Quarter features a ramp and pier. When facing the water, a visitor would see the mouth of Dames Quarter Creek. From the ramp, small boat owners go to the right up into the creek. Large boat owners head to the left where they quickly meet the waters of the Monie Bay/Wicomico River. The Tangier Sound open waters on the Chance, MD side of the Chesapeake Bay quickly follow. This ramp is used for fishing and recreational boating activity. The Messick Road pier and shoreline is a popular spot for fishing, crabbing, and bird watching. (Messick Road is approximately 10 miles (16 km) in from Rte 13. From Deal Island Road, turn on Messick Road and go approximately 1-mile (1.6 km). The public boat ramp area is at the end.
  3. The Riley Roberts Road public boat ramp area is in Dames Quarter. This is actually considered the main entrance to the WMA. It has two ramps. The ramp on the left is used by small boat owners. It features the east side of the impoundment (lake) area of the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area. Primarily known for two things: Catching Maryland Chesapeake blue crabs the old fashioned way, i.e. by line/chicken neck/weight/net and for its 9 miles (14 km) of scenic water vista related trail. The ramp on the right is used by larger boat owners. It quickly feeds into where the mouth of the Manokin River meets the Tangier Sound waters of the Little Deal Island side of the Chesapeake Bay. It is mainly used for fishing, hunting, and recreational boating activity. Riley Roberts Road is approximately 12 miles (19 km) in from Rte 13. From Deal Island Road, turn on Riley Roberts Road. Take it to the end. Riley Roberts Road is approximately 3 miles (4.8 km) long. Very rustic, very rural. A good halfway marker is the old Deal Island School property which is directly across from 10876 Riley Roberts Road.
  4. Immediately after crossing the Deal Island bridge, make a right into Deal Island harbor. Launch a small boat and head east in to the back waters and creeks ("guts") of Deal Island, Dames Quarter, and Little Deal Island. Large boat owners head west into the open waters of the Tangier Sound of the Chesapeake Bay.
  5. The Wenona public boat ramp is located at the southernmost tip of Deal Island. Launch a kayak, canoe, or other small boat for the 10-minute paddle to Little Deal Island. Little Deal Island is uninhabited. Wenoana Harbor is approximately 19 miles (31 km) in from Rte 13. Take Deal Island Road to the end. Look for the harbor ramp and parking area on the left.


As of the census[5] of 2000, there were 377 people, 161 households, and 113 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 218.1 people per square mile (84.1/km²). There were 254 housing units at an average density of 147.0/sq mi (56.7/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 75.60% White, 23.61% African American, 0.27% from other races, and 0.53% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.53% of the population.

There were 161 households out of which 17.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.0% were married couples living together, 12.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.2% were non-families. 23.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.74.

In the CDP the population was spread out with 18.8% under the age of 18, 5.0% from 18 to 24, 24.1% from 25 to 44, 29.7% from 45 to 64, and 22.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 47 years. For every 100 females there were 93.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.2 males.

The median income for a household in the CDP was $34,531, and the median income for a family was $37,969. Males had a median income of $25,469 versus $21,875 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $15,706. About 16.8% of families and 23.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 51.9% of those under age 18 and 14.3% of those age 65 or over.


  1. ^ National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^ Somerset County MD Roads Department
  5. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.