Roxy’s Best Of… Bay Head, New Jersey

The Best of Bay Head, NJ, and the Jersey Shore, from kid stuff (including summer camp) to restaurants to shopping

Aug
28

Roxy, Rex, London & Maddie Frolic in the Private Sandbox of the Rich

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From the Roxiticus Desperate Memoirs:

Thursday, August 28, 2008, after 5:30pm
It smells so good out here on the beach…ocean air, sea breeze. Our girls have grown up to the point where they will disappear for hours at a time on the beach with their friends, their shovels, their buckets, barbies and Polly Pocket dolls. “Act your people!” they’ll shout, if unlucky enough to be stuck playing dolls with mom or Aunt Veg. There’s a pack of about 10 or 15 of them now…cute, though, unlike the newly minted teenage hoodlums. 

I envy my girls their childhood…when I was growing up, I didn’t even know enough to wish for what they have today: the sisterhood, the easy summer friendships on the beach. I loved the day trips I would take with my parents to Lavalette or Avon-by-the-Sea… but I don’t think I ever tried to socialize with other kids on the beach, maybe knowing instinctively that the groups of kids my age shared a history of summers together.

One of our neighbors called to our attention a recent article about Bay Head and Mantoloking, New Jersey in The Canadian Press: “Welcome to the Jersey Shore. Now Go Home” where visitors to our fair beaches whined: 

“They treat it like the private sandbox of a privileged few.

Tactics include charging as much as US $12 to use the beach for a single day and severely restricting parking near the beach (IF there’s parking at all). Then there’s the lack of restrooms and showers, a ban on food and drinks on the beach, physical barriers preventing beachgoers from even reaching the sand.”

I guess we and our neighbors do care for our beach as if it were our own private beach, but I’m so deep into it that I can’t see the outsiders’ point. Bay Head charges $6 for a day pass for visitors over 12 years old, which Rex and I gladly pay when we have more than two adult visitors (we buy four annual passes for $65 each). Why should we provide public bathrooms or allow food on our beaches? If you want that, go somewhere else, like Pt. Pleasant Beach or Seaside Heights. Go to a state park beach, where they have the capacity to clean up after you leave half of your picnic on the beach and go home. Or rent a house or a hotel room here if the beaches that provide restrooms, showers, and food for day trippers don’t have the appeal of Bay Head. There’s a reason our beaches are pristine…don’t ask us to put trash cans and portajohns all over our beaches for your day tripping convenience…just go somewhere else.

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