Shore 2009: Fun & Games

Amusements for all ages

Take a joyride.  Boy, has the Segway caught on in Sea Isle, where a company called Moving Forward Rentals provides lessons and an hour of fun for $37.50. Meanwhile, young ones get a kick out of the monorail that chugs around O.C.’s Wonderland Pier, and everyone should climb aboard one of the massive monster trucks at Thunder Motorsports in Wildwood — $8 buys you a seat and a romp around the ring. (Moving Forward Rentals, 4118 Landis Avenue, Sea Isle City, 609-263-0885,; Wonderland Pier, 6th Street and the Boardwalk, Ocean City, 609-399-7082,; Thunder Motorsports: Youngs Avenue and the Boardwalk, Wildwood, 609-523-8051,

Start a shuffleboard tourney.  Only one place for it, really, and it’s at Charlie’s Bar and Restaurant in Somers Point, where there’s an old-school shuffleboard table complete with shuffleboard dust. Get some wings, grab a beer, and pray for a 10. (Charlie’s Bar and Restaurant 800 Shore Road, Somers Point, 609-927-3663,

Get your thrills.  Fantasy Island in Beach Haven is small potatoes compared to Morey’s Piers, but the Giant Wheel and the teacups are less crowded, and endearing. But, of course, Wildwood is king. Everybody’s bummed that after years and years on the old Hunt’s Pier, the old Golden Nugget Mine Ride is no more (RIP, G.N.!). Thank God the best roller coaster anywhere at the Shore — the Great White at the last Morey’s Pier (a.k.a. Wild Wheels and Adventure Pier) — is still there in all its massive, clackety glory, terrifying everyone with its dozen or so giant, stomach-dropping dips. (Fantasy Island 320 Seventh Street, Beach Haven, 609-492-4000,; Morey’s Piers 3501 Boardwalk, Wildwood, 609-522-3900,

Play some Skee-Ball.  At Cape May’s Family Fun Arcade, bypass the rundown, coin-sucking electronic games: The back wall is lined with 25-cent Skee-Ball machines — though serious Skee-Ballers prefer the old-school Uncle Al’s Arcade in Sea Isle for its Thursday Skee-Ball tournaments. You can practice your game pretty much everywhere at the Shore, save maybe Downbeach. (Family Fun Arcade Beach Avenue and Howard Street, Cape May, 609-884-7020; Uncle Al’s Arcade 35th Street and the Boardwalk, Sea Isle City, 609-263-7485)

Swing (a bat, a racket, yourself).  At Sea Isle’s 2008 addition Dealy Field (59th Street and Central, by the bay), you’ll find lots of places to play: softball diamonds, tennis and basketball courts, a hockey rink, a skateboard park, and a cool, kid-approved playground.  (Dealy Field 59th Street and Central Avenue, Sea Isle City) 

Challenge Mom to a round of mini golf. 
Courses are everywhere, and everyone’s got a favorite. Play any (or all), starting with Pat Croce’s Pirate Island in Avalon, Goofy Golf in Ocean City, or Thundering Surf in Beach Haven (where you can cool off afterward at the adjoining water park). (Pat Croce’s Pirate Island 27th Street and Dune Drive, Avalon, 609-368-8344,; Goofy Golf 920 Boardwalk, Ocean City, 609-398-9662; Thundering Surf 8th Street and Bay
Avenue, Beach Haven, 609-492-0869,

Capture the moment.  Immortalize the fun: Stick out your tongue, pucker up or flash those pearly whites in any of the arcade photo booths scattered about the Shore. Say cheese!