Ocean City, New Jersey, the Most Magical Shore Town on Earth

Gilligan's Wonderland Pier Ferris Wheel | Edwin under a CC 2.0 license.

Gillian’s Wonderland Pier Ferris Wheel | Edwin under a CC 2.0 license.

My family has gone to Ocean City, New Jersey, every summer since I can remember.

When things were tight, we went for a long afternoon or a short weekend. Other times, we’d pack up that gigantic blue station wagon and put Fox Chase in the rearview for an entire week. Regardless, for a few hours or a few days, it was always and easily the best part of the year, the time when the Weymouths most felt like the families on TV.

It wasn’t until I was in college that we decided to take our first “real” vacation and booked a flight to Disney World. Read more »

The Lavish Lifestyle of the Manco & Manco Owners, Revealed in Court Docs

Manco & Manco

One of the dangers of asking a judge to seal a document in a court case is that then everyone will know that you wanted it sealed, thereby increasing the interest in a financial document that might otherwise seem wonky and dull. This is the problem that the owners of Jersey Shore mainstay Manco & Manco Pizza recently encountered in federal court. Read more »

Jaw Dropper of the Week: Bayside Mansion in Longport With Magical Sunsets



It’s almost April and that means it’s only a few short months until shore season. We’ve hit the home stretch, people! Here’s one helluva mansion on the bay in Longport, and at nearly $6 million, it’s certain to grab your attention.

Windows abound in this Olivieri-designed estate, a perfect feature for all of those beautiful sunsets on the Great Egg Harbor Bay (see gallery). Sure, the home is almost 6,000-square-feet and three-stories high, but it actually seems much larger from the inside. Take a look at that enormous open living room and kitchen. It features an exposed, multi-story winding staircase, balconies overlooking the room and out to the bay, a shiny fireplace that stretches to the ceiling and access to the expansive deck area. Read more »

Proof That Jersey Shore Beach Access Opponents Are Wrong, Snobs

Photo | Jen A. Miller

There are five — five! — different bathroom stops in this photo of a very visitor-friendly beach in Redondo California. Photo | Jen A. Miller

Over the holidays, I shipped out to Southern California to visit family for a week. Almost every day I was there, I ran along Redondo Beach’s paved running and biking path — not only because it was parallel to the ocean, but also because those beaches had a water fountain, bathroom or both every few blocks.

That area of California is extremely pricey. The median home sales price in Redondo Beach is $800,000, and one neighborhood enclave requires at least $12 million to even think about owning a home there. This is not a crummy, rag-tag beach, and yet the community makes sure that there are plenty of places for pit stops for those who visit there, even if they’re coming in from out of town.

This makes some New Jersey beach towns look insane — and obnoxious — as they continue to try to do everything to shirk beach access mandates.

Read more »

Where We’re Eating: Martorano’s

In a region overrun with Italian restaurants, this trendy goombah-and-gravy joint from Philly expat and Florida/Vegas restaurateur Steve Martorano is one of the best and most fun, even if it is majorly gimmicky. You won’t find anything here that needs explanation. The Famous Meatball & Salad is exactly what it sounds like. There’s chicken cutlet parmigiana, spaghetti pescatore and Sunday gravy. It’s like dinner at your grandma’s, only with tight-dressed hostesses, Italian gangster movies on the flat-screens, a maître d’ who’ll jokingly tell you you’ll be sleeping with the fishes if you don’t watch it, and a bumping, liquor-fueled dance party that erupts late in the evenings and on weekends. So, actually, not really like dinner at Grandma’s at all, unless we had very different grandmas.

Details »

Cape May Brewing Company Hits Philly

Photo via Cape May Brewing Company on Twitter

Photo via Cape May Brewing Company on Twitter

This December, Philadelphia’s welcoming a new player in the lineup of beer, South Jersey’s Cape May Brewing Company will be served throughout the city after recently celebrating its third anniversary.

Some of the beers to be released in town are the brewery’s flagship Cape May IPA, King Porter Stomp, Devil’s Reach, a strong Belgian-style ale and Mop Water, their 5-spiced ale.

One of the first Philadelphia bars that will carry the brewery’s beer is the Draught Horse Pub on Temple University’s campus. The owners of the Draught Horse also own Cabanas Beach Bar and Grill, the first bar to carry the Cape May Brewing Company’s beers in Cape May, so bringing the brews to Philly means the whole thing has really come full circle for the brewery.

More on the brewery »

Hurricane Sandy’s Second Anniversary Has Been Harder Than the First


I took the day off yesterday, putting up an out-of-office message so I could pop the windows out of my Jeep Wrangler and cruise down the shore. I stopped at the Ocean View Wawa for a sandwich and a bag of chips, then parked myself in a chair on the beach in Strathmere.

I spent most of the day reading a book, but I also did a lot of staring at the ocean. I told friends I hit the beach because I’m tapering for a marathon, and I’m full of edgy energy that has no outlet. But really, I was there because today is the two-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy making landfall in New Jersey, and I wanted to both pay my respects and thanks to the beach that survived, and deliver a giant middle finger to a storm that destroyed large parts of our Jersey Shore.

I’ve had a harder time with the two-year anniversary than the first. When a preview copy of Superstorm: Nine Days Inside Hurricane Sandy came in the mail, I took it right to my library’s donation bin. It’s more difficult now because we have a clearer picture of how bad things really are, not just in the immediate days after the storm where we could not stop looking at pictures of roads torn apart and houses shattered into splinters, but the inevitable mess that came after.

Read more »

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