Cape May, Special Events, Uncategorized

Free Weekly Summer Events in Cape May

Every summer, Cape May hosts free weekly events as listed below.

Dancing to the Fred Hall Orchestra (7:30 for children, 9:00 for adults, Cape May Convention Hall). Children’s dance goes from 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm and the adult ballroom dancing goes from 9:00 pm – 10:30 pm.

Farmers Market (3:00 pm – 7:30 pm, West Cape May Municipal Complex at the Backyard Park).

Free Family Magic Show (7:00 pm, Cape May Convention Hall).

Free Movies on the Beach (8:00 pm, Stockton Beach next to Convention Hall). Live Music & Children’s Activities begin at 8:00 pm and the featured movie begins at 8:30 pm.

Dancing to the Fred Hall Orchestra (7:30 for children, 9:00 for adults, Cape May Convention Hall). Children’s dance goes from 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm and the adult ballroom dancing goes from 9:00 pm – 10:30 pm.

Dancing to the Fred Hall Orchestra (7:30 for children, 9:00 for adults, Cape May Convention Hall). Children’s dance goes from 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm and the adult ballroom dancing goes from 9:00 pm – 10:30 pm.

Free Evening Concerts at the Rotary Park Bandstand (7:00 pm, Rotary Park, 400 Lafayette Street).

Communion at the Grove (8:00 am, Sunset Pavilion at Beach & 2nd Avenues).

Free Family Nature and Wildlife Show (7:30 pm, Cape May Convention Hall).

Free Evening Concerts at the Rotary Park Bandstand (7:00 pm, Rotary Park, 400 Lafayette Street).

For more information about Cape May, please follow the links below:

Find out why Cape May is “The Nation’s Oldest Seaside Resort”
History of Cape May
Cape May Beach Information
Where to Stay in Cape May
Where to Eat in Cape May
Upcoming Events in Cape May – Fall/Winter 2018

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Avalon, Special Events

Free Weekly Summer Events in Avalon

Each summer, Avalon hosts free weekly events as listed below:

Monday Funday (10:00 am, Avalon Free Public Library or Avalon History Center). This weekly interactive kids event is part of the summer reading program.

Beach Movies (Dusk, 30th Street Beach)

Kids Lego Club (10:00 am, Avalon Free Public Library). This event features a new Lego project for kids every week.

Dune and Beach Walk (9:30 am – 10:30 am, 48th Street and Dune Drive). Walk with a naturalist along the maritime forest and dune trails and learn about the animals and plants that thrive in this environment. Presented by the Wetlands Institute of Stone Harbor.

Thursdays on Dune Concert Series (5:30 – 8:30 p.m. Veterans Plaza, 21st Street and Dune Drive). Featuring children’s activities from 5:30 – 7:00 pm including face painting, balloon art, character appearances, crafts, giveaways and more, followed by a live band from 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm.

Video Games at the Library (11 am – 12:00 noon, Avalon Free Public Library). For all ages. Play Nintendo Switch on a big screen, plus enjoy other games such as Nintendo DS and tabletop games.

For more information about Avalon, please follow the links below:

About Avalon
History of Avalon
Avalon Beach Information
Where to Stay in Avalon
Where to Eat in Avalon
Upcoming Events in Avalon – Fall/Winter 2018

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Special Events

Memorial Day: A Day Of Remembrance

For many people, Memorial Day Weekend is a perfect time to travel to the shore to enjoy a three-day vacation by the sea. The weekend is usually packed with festivities and serves as the unofficial beginning of the summer season.

As you enjoy the sun’s first warm rays and spend quality time with friends and family on the beach, it is important to take time to remember the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May to honor the men and women who have died while serving in the United States military. Originally known as Decoration Day, this special day of remembrance originated in May 1868 when General John A. Logan called for a nationwide day of remembrance after the civil war, which claimed more American lives than any other conflict. It is believed that May 30 was originally chosen as the date of observation, primarily because it was a day that did not fall on the anniversary of a civil war battle. In 1971, the Uniform Monday Holiday Act came into effect, establishing that Memorial Day would be observed on the last Monday in May, and designating it as a federal holiday.

If you are there already, or plan to be down the shore on Memorial Day, there are several ceremonies taking place that you may want to partake in to mark this important day and pay your respect to those who have given their lives defending our country. Information about how each town will observe Memorial Day is listed below.

Memorial Day Parade
Monday May 28, 2018 9:00 a.m.
32nd and Dune Drive, Avalon

Cape May
Memorial at All Wars Monument
Monday, May 28, 2018 9:00 a.m.
Columbia and Gurney Streets, Cape May

Memorial Day Ceremony
Monday, May 28, 2018 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Cape May Convention Hall
714 Beach Ave, Cape May

Ocean City
Memorial Day Service
Monday, May 28, 2018 11:00 a.m.
Veteran’s Memorial Park
Wesley Avenue between 5th and 6th Streets, Ocean City

Sea Isle City
Memorial Day Ceremony
Monday, May 28, 2018 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Veteran’s Park
JFK Boulevard and Landis Avenue, Sea Isle City

Stone Harbor
Memorial Service for Fallen Heroes
Monday, May 28, 2018 11:00 a.m.
Stone Harbor Volunteer Fire House
175 96th St, Stone Harbor

7 Mile Island American Legion Parade and Ceremony
Monday, May 28, 2018 12:00 noon
Stone Harbor Women’s Civic Club
96th Street and the Beach, Stone Harbor

North Wildwood
Memorial Day Service at Hereford Inlet Lighthouse
Monday, May 28, 2019 9:30 a.m.
111 North Central Avenue, North Wildwood

Memorial Day Ceremony at North Wildwood Veteran’s Monument
Monday, May 28, 2018 10:00 a.m.
Spruce and New York Avenues, North Wildwood

Memorial Day Ceremony at American Legion Post 184
Monday, May 28, 2018 11:00 a.m.
4200 Atlantic Avenue, Wildwood

A special thank you to all our military members for your bravery and service! 


Special Events

The Shore is Open For Business!

What does a large wooden key, a business suit and a kite all have in common?

The answer is that all played a major role this weekend in a series of ceremonies designed to welcome visitors to the shore and kick off the 2018 Summer Season.

Although summer won’t officially begin until June 21, Memorial Day Weekend marks the unofficial start of the summer season down the shore, when shops and restaurants fully open, beach umbrellas pop up in the sand and lifeguards begin their careful watch.

oceancityunlockoceanOn Friday, Ocean City held its annual “Unlocking of the Ocean” ceremony on the 9th Street Beach, a tradition that began in the 1940s. A large crowd gathered under sunny blue skies next to the Music Pier at noon and watched as city officials placed a large  wooden key into the sand and turned it to symbolize the opening of the summer season.

ocean city business perosn plungeImmediately following the unlocking ceremony, the Ocean City High School Marching Band performed Pomp and Circumstance as a crowd of men and women wearing business attire and carrying signs and flags to showcase their businesses, marched into the ocean. The 15th Annual “Business Persons Plunge” tells visitors that the shore is officially open for business.

wildwood unlocking ocean

Further south along the coast, a similar event was held on the beach next to the Wildwood Convention Center, when City officials turned a large ornate key topped with a “W” in the sand to mark the opening of Wildwood’s summer season. Earlier that morning, school children attended a kite making workshop and came out to fly their handmade creations as a kick-off the 33rd Annual Wildwood Kite Festival, the largest of its kind in North America. The festival, which will continue through Memorial Day, features kite makers from around the world who come to Wildwood to showcase their works of art in various competitions and exhibitions.

After a long dreary winter featuring snow storms and nor’easters, and a spring that treated us to days-long deluges on the East Coast, precipitation-weary travelers were finally able to enjoy picture-perfect beach days at the start of the weekend. Friday and Saturday’s shore weather featured plentiful sun, a cool breeze and temps in the mid- to high 70s – quite unlike the humid 80’s that the mainlanders were served. Tens of thousands of visitors flocked to the coast to catch some rays, dine al fresco by the water, shop in seaside boutiques and celebrate the start of the shore season.

Here’s hoping that Summer 2018 is everything we hope it to be!


Special Events

Spring Has Sprung at the Shore

 In just one week from today, shore towns from Ocean City to Cape May will host events to “unlock the ocean” and officially invite visitors to stay and play by the sea.

But if you don’t want to  wait until Memorial Day to go down the shore, this weekend is a great opportunity to jump-start the season with a series of events sure to satisfy every type of traveler. It may be a little soggy, but there is still a lot of fun to be had.

washingtonstreetshoppingThe shopaholics among us, myself included, will be thrilled to know that most of the towns’ shops are open for business – at least on Saturdays and Sundays for now – all featuring their new summer lines. Now is a great time to find unique beach fashions not found in stores on the mainland, purchase home décor items made by local artisans, or score yourself a coveted Tommy Bahama beach chair before the best designs are sold out. While popular shopping venues in Ocean City, Sea Isle, Avalon and Stone Harbor will be open this weekend, the Cape May Sidewalk Sale at the Washington Street Mall promises special savings in a friendly open-air environment. The Washington Street Mall is a three-block section of Cape May that features clothing boutiques, gift shops and specialty stores nestled among a wide variety of restaurants, cafes and pubs. The Sidewalk Sale will run from Thursday May 17 – Sunday May 20, 2018.


elaines-cape-may.pngIf you never received your invitation to Meghan and Harry’s wedding (perhaps it was lost in the mail?) you are invited to be a guest at the Royal Wedding Party at Elaine’s of Cape May on Saturday, May 19, 2018 from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm. Wear a fancy hat – prizes will be given – and enjoy a full English tea as you bear witness to the royal wedding via recording. Proceeds from a silent auction will benefit Branches Outreach Center.

beach hunt.jpgDo you love beachcombing for treasures along the water’s edge? Then you may want to take part in the Cloud Nine Treasure Hunt in Ocean City on May 19-20, 2018 from 8:00 am – 4:00 pm. Over the course of two days, two adult hunts and one child’s hunt  will be held. The kids’ hunt will be held on Saturday at 11:00 am and is open to children age 13 and younger with adults on hand to assist them in finding treasures, including foreign coins that they can keep, as they search through their own designated section of the beach. The event will include lunch, soda and water, and contests with prizes. Proceeds benefit the East Coast Research and Discovery Association (ECRDA), the Northeast’s largest treasure-hunting club.

lobsterloftIf finding nature’s treasures along the sea is more your thing, come join the Turtle Party Fundraiser which will be held at the Lobster Loft at 42nd Place and the Bay in Sea Isle City on May 20, 2018 from 6:00 to 10:00 p.m. This event includes dinner and desserts, domestic draft beer, house wines and soft drinks and features live music, dancing and door prizes donated by local businesses and other supporters. This event is an annual fundraiser for the Sea Isle City Beachcombing Guides, a volunteer-run program held every Tuesday and Thursday morning throughout the summer to educate participants about the local eco-system. Participants gather on the beach to learn from a Guide about nature’s many creatures that dwell in and around the southern Jersey coastal waters, and are given a bucket to then search for their own treasures.

shorebirdhorseshoeNature lovers can also venture down the coast to celebrate an important rite of passage of spring along the Jersey shores – the annual spawning of horseshoe crabs and corresponding shorebird migration. The 6th Annual Spring Shorebird and Horseshoe Crab Festival will take place on the grounds of the Wetlands Institute in Stone Harbor on May 19 – 20, 2018 from 9:30 am – 4:30 pm. The weekend promises an array of interactive activities for all ages including guided shorebird viewings, horseshoe crab workshops, horseshoe crab spawning survey demonstrations and rescue walks, aquarium teaching tank and aquaculture tours, naturalist-led Salt Marsh Trail walks and other hands-on education and conservation-based activities.

sherlock-holmes-147255_960_720.pngIf you enjoy murder mysteries, there are two exciting events this weekend in which to partake. The Wildwoods Murder Mystery Weekend “Death at the USO Dance” will be held May 18-19, 2018. Enjoy a weekend filled with fun & mystery as you take a stroll back in time and help to solve a murder. Your ticket for the weekend includes a Murder Mystery Show, a boardwalk scavenger hunt, a night under the stars watching a 1940’s era movie, a Sock Hop and Dessert Party as well as a complete breakfast and a three-course dinner at your choice of selected restaurants. Tickets are available online or at the Greater Wildwood Chamber of Commerce, 3306 Pacific Avenue in Wildwood.

More virtual death and intrigue can be found further south as the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts (MAC) hosts a Murder Mystery Dinner, “An Evening to Die For” on May 19, 2018 at the Inn at Cape May, 7 Ocean Street, Cape May. Enjoy a four-course meal as you help the cast solve the mystery of “whodunnit”.

lighthouse-857163__340Lighthouse aficionados can hop aboard the Cape May Whale Watcher to enjoy the Grand Lighthouse Tour, where they will cruise along the coast for the opportunity to see and photograph seven historic lighthouses. Each five-hour cruise includes narration on the history of each lighthouse, as well as a continental breakfast buffet and Captain’s Lunch buffet.

beermusicfest.jpgIf you are looking to enjoy Theatre, Music, Comedy, Art, Beer – or a combination of the above – check out the Cape May Fringe Festival going on May 18-20, 2018 at the Aerodrome, 251 Ranger Road, Rio Grande 08242. Live music and libations will be flowing all weekend long in this event that has been referred to as “Woodstock, without the Wood”.


And if you want to just come to the shore to relax, this will be the last weekend that most of the beaches will be free before Beach Tag Season begins. So grab your chair, get on the Skookull, and come soak in some warm sun and cool beach breezes before the humidity and green flies of summer set in.

“Sea” you soon!

Ocean City, Special Events

Martin Makes a Move

Each May, all eyes turn to the small seaside town of Ocean City, New Jersey as winter-weary beach-goers eagerly await weather guidance from popular predictive prognosticator, Martin Z. Mollusk.

Martin is a crafty crustacean who has garnered celebrity status from throngs of adoring fans who lined the beach next to the Music Pier last weekend just for a chance to see the guy and learn when summer will truly begin. He was carried down to the beach on the shoulders of former Eagles long-snapper Jon Dorenbos amid much pomp and circumstance. A chorus of children serenaded him and a few kids were even honored for their inspiring artwork as a gigantic inflatable hermit crab danced in the spring breeze. Several crab fishing vessels were lured to the offshore, until they learned it was nothing but a fake decoy.

Each year, Martin Z. Mollusk day begins when he wakes up from hibernation and makes his way to the beach. It once took him weeks to emerge from his covered crab cage in a boarded-up boardwalk store, until fans became so bored themselves waiting for him to arrive on his own, that they found a local celebrity to hasten the event by carrying him down to the beach. Cue: Dorenbos.

The idea behind Martin Z. Mollusk Day is that if the dashing decapod sees his shadow, summer will come a week early. If he doesn’t see his shadow, it is believed by those who follow shore folklore that summer will come a week later when the town mayor brings his or her oversized key to the beach and, in another act of pomp and circumstance, unlocks the ocean. Either way, summer will officially come on June 21, weeks after Memorial Day ushers in the unofficial beginning of summer at the shore. If you are confused by all this start-of- summer talk, don’t be – you’ll know it’s summer when it takes you 35 hours to drive to the shore from Philly. One way.

Oh, and by the way, Martin K. Mollusk saw his shadow. Which means summer starts this weekend. I think. If you want to know what’s going on down the shore for the unofficial new start of summer on May 18, 2018, look for my next blog post, “Spring has Sprung at the Shore!”. Which, come to think of it, should possibly be changed to “Summer (?) Has Sprung at the Shore!”

Either way, enjoy your weekend!

Special Events

What’s Going On Down The Shore This Weekend (October 13-15, 2017)

Cape May

Halloween Happenings in Cape May – October 13-31, 2017
During the last two weeks of October, Cape May will have many spooky Halloween events. visit the Halloween Happenings page for more information.

Oct. 14: Harvest Crafts & Collectibles Show – October 14, 2017 (10 am – 4 pm)
Crafters and collectibles dealers from throughout the region display and sell their wares. Admission $2. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC).Cape May Convention Hall, Beach Avenue at Stockton.

Tea & Confessions: The Bizarre Case of Lizzie Borden – Saturday, Oct. 14: (2:30pm)
Who was Lizzie Borden, and what really happened on the fateful day her parents were hacked to death in the family home? Meet Lizzie Borden and get swept up in the story of one of the most notorious women in modern history. Carriage House Cafe & Tearoom at the Physick Estate, 1048 Washington Street, Cape May. Cost is $30 per person.


Fabulous ’50s & Beyond Weekend – October 13-14, 2017 (Friday 7 pm to 11 pm; Saturday 11 am – 5 pm)

Friday night features a Nifty ’50s Dance Party at the Wildwoods Convention Center. Tickets are $15 per person. A free street fair will take place at Fox Park in Wildwood on Saturday featuring classic cars, food and craft vendors, a Doo Wop Bus Tour, and live entertainment. Saturday night features a star-studded concert at the Wildwoods Convention Center at 7:00 p.m. featuring Bobby Rydell, Little Anthony & The Imperials, and Shirley Alston Reeves. Tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster and are available at the Greater Wildwood Chamber of Commerce (3306 Pacific Avenue) or at the Wildwoods Convention Center Box Office the weekend of the event. Doors open at 6 pm.

Ocean City

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of Ocean City – October 15, 2017 (10 am – 2 pm)
Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. at 9th Street and walk begins at 10:00 a.m. Making Strides Against Breast Cancer is a non-competitive 3 – 5 mile walk where participants have the opportunity to unite, honor and celebrate breast cancer survivors while raising awareness and funds to help the American Cancer Society free the world from the pain and suffering caused by breast cancer.

Special Events

What’s Going On Down the Shore This Weekend (September 29 – October 1)

Looking for a good reason to get out of town this weekend? There are plenty fun activities going on down the shore. Check them out here.

Wildwood Olde Time Italian Festival – September 29 – 30, 2017 
Celebrate Italian culture and heritage at Fox Park on Ocean Avenue between Burk and Montgomery Avenues in Wildwood. This ‘Olde World’ family festival includes a Procession of the Saints, delicious Italian food favorites, merchandise vendors, games, and continuous live entertainment. A grape stomping contest and spaghetti eating contest will take place as well. Admission to the festival is FREE.

Wildwood Oktoberfest – September 29 – October 1, 2017 
Oktoberfest will run for three weekends in September and October. The event features live music, kids’ activities, rides, entertainment and food. Jumbo’s restaurant will feature a special themed selection of Bavarian pretzels, bratwurst, German potato salad, schnitzel and more.  “Bier on the Pier” features a wide selection of draught beers and tasting flights to be enjoyed at an outdoor “biergarten” located behind Jumbo’s with live entertainment from The Oompah-Delics.

Cape May Oktoberfest – Saturday, September 30, 2017
Start October early on Jackson Street, from Beach to Carpenters Lane, with the annual celebration of the arrival of fall. Join with your friends and family for a day of food, beer, music and fun for all. No rain date. For more information, click here.
Autumn Festival Crafts & Collectibles Show – Saturday, September 30, 2017
Craft show will be held at the Emlen Physick Estate, 1048 Washington Street.

Sea Isle City Harborfest – Saturday, September 30, 2017
This bayside festival at Marina Park features delicious seafood, live music, clam eating contest, crafts and specialty vendors gathering to celebrate Sea Isle’s fishing and nautical history. This is a rain or shine event, and in the case of heavy rain the event will be moved indoors to the Lobster Loft Restaurant. For more information, click here.
Boardwalk & Downtown Merchant Table Sales – Saturday, September 30, 2017
Boardwalk and Asbury Avenue merchants will set up tables featuring sale items. Sale tables can be found between 6th – 14th Streets on the boardwalk and on Asbury Avenue.

Special Events

It’s National Lobster Day!

It’s September 25, and you know what that means.

Oh, you don’t? Why, it’s National Lobster Day!

If you’re surprised to learn that this crafty crustacean has its own national day, you’re not alone. As a matter of fact, you may be even more surprised when you find out who created it.

If you guessed a lobsterman or an ocean conservationist you’d be incorrect. In fact, it was during the 2017 summer session of the U.S. Senate when the lobster legislation allegedly clawed its way to the top of the Senate agenda. So while you thought our legislators were in embroiled in closed door, rolled sleeve, heated debates over access to healthcare and bathrooms, in reality they were bibbed up and cracking claws over a succulent lobster dinner.

I’m kidding, of course. But not about the proclamation – in fact, two Rhode Island senators and seven of their New England colleagues sponsored the idea of a National Day for lobsters to recognize the historic and economic importance of the lobster industry to coastal states and to pay tribute to an industry that supports thousands of New England families. Nearly 150 million pounds of lobster are caught each year in U.S waters with an annual value of more than $500 million, which explains why you can expect to spend the equivalent of a semester at community college for a night out.

The resolution includes some important information about lobsters and how important the industry is to New England, and concludes with a call to action encouraging Americans to “observe the day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.”

So exactly what ceremonies and activities would be appropriate in marking this day? Here are some ideas:

1. Learn about Lobsters
It is believed that in addition to turkey, lobster was also served at the first Thanksgiving feast in 1621. In the 1600s, responsible lobster practices were put in place, making this industry one of the first to engage in conservation efforts in the United States and thereby creating one of the most sustainable fisheries in the world. Throughout history, United States Presidents have served lobster at their inaugural celebrations and state dinners with international leaders. Lobster is a source of lean protein and heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, is low in saturated fat and high in vitamin B12. Lobsters can grow up to four feet long and weigh as much as 40 pounds and have teeth in their stomachs. It’s a myth that lobsters scream when you put them in hot water – they have no lungs and no vocal cords. It is believed that lobsters can live as long as 100 years.

So there you have it, now you know a lot about lobsters.

2. Eat a Lobster
Many people love lobster, but few know how to prepare it at home. Follow this link to  learn How To Cook, Crack and Eat a Lobster.

3. Prepare a Lobster dish
In addition to being eaten straight up, lobster can be prepared in dishes and is quite delicious. Here are some of our favorite lobster dish recipes:

Lobster Bisque
Lobster Mac and Cheese
Lobster Newburg
Lobster Roll

4. Go to a Seafood Fest
The coastal towns of South Jersey have many seafood festivals in late summer and fall. Follow this link to see when Seafood Festivals are being held this fall.

5. Adopt a Lobster
That’s right – you can adopt a lobster of your very own. Follow this link to find out how!

We hope you enjoy National Lobster Day. Grab a bib and get cracking!