Category: New Jersey

Dizzy Spell

A dizzying ride at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, N.J. Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

This ride at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, N.J. reminds me of three-year-olds twirling themselves to dizziness and then collapsing on the ground in laughter. Why do we go to such great heights to drive ourselves dizzy? When does…

Skeletons + Clear Skies = Strange Adventure

There is nothing like a wholesome day at an amusement park all decked out for Halloween to make one wonder about the future of civilization. A beautiful, sunny fall day combined with a theme park dressed for frightening makes for…

Extended Stay Okay

To the extent that I actually contemplate extended stay hotels, I think of the higher-end ones as refuges for corporate sorts on months-long assignments. This may be a branding problem, or it may just be me, but when I think…

Why My Great Adventure Is Only So-So

On a trip to New Jersey for a 50th wedding anniversary of some cousins, the Brawny Sherpa and I decide to spend a day at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson with all three Youthful Adventurers. We’ll gladly pay the…

Massacre on the Shore

A plaque at Barnegat Lighthouse State Park on Long Beach Island, N.J. informs visitors about a tragedy that took place during the American Revolution. Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

I am not exactly looking for the American Revolution as I walk from a parking lot on Long Beach Island, N.J. toward “Old Barney,” the lighthouse at its northern end. A plaque near the walk toward the light house tells…

Beaches with Something Extra

The week before Labor Day is the time of summer when everyone seems to be at the beach. My days of simply sunning are long past; now when I am seeking a beach vacation, in addition to wide swaths of…

Signs of Summer Down the Shore

Where to Stay in New Jersey Summer and surfing and the Jersey shore combine so easily. Easy memories of time spent at Beach Haven, Point Pleasant, and Seaside Heights are bright, no matter how distant from the present. I am…

Getting Out of the House and Staying Put

Venice, Italy

I travel because I want to try out different lives. Could I remember the names of all the trees and remedies to become a shaman? Would throwing my slop into the streets of medieval Rouen be too much for me?…

My Kind of Camp: The Jersey Shore

The Bashful Adventurer at the Jersey shore

I’ve been going to Seaside Heights since I was less than a year old, and even though so much of it never seems to change, I never tire of the place—even with the presence of Snooki et al. Cruising the boardwalk, drinking sugary lemonades, eating fried pickles, indulging in pizza, and attempting to consume a candy apple gracefully are all part of the experience. Carnival barkers, air hockey, arcades, a ferris wheel, and a haunted house that always seem to break down just as I get there are that much more fun with when experienced with a sand, surf, and sunscreen residue earned from a few hours sunbathing on the beach.

There might not be Andy Warhols, but there’s art at the place (clown murals!); great people watching, and even better eavesdropping. One recent weekend, I was treated to a rundown of a twenty-something’s very active romantic life, complete with names, plot twists, and TMI-level details. I and everyone within earshot heard one half of her very long cellphone call while catching a little sun at the shore. At this point, it was entertaining to live just a bit vicariously even as I am grateful that my own past is far more tame.

If you need to shop for incense or shore shirts, there’s a place for you. Sure, the crowd and the merchandise skew young, but the amusement park rides guarantee that this is a family place, and the food bargains and benches offer comfort to the older set.  It’s a rare occasion when anyone in my family opts out from a day at this beach.

Note from the Brawny Sherpa: I rule at air hockey. Just sayin’. Fried scallops are good, too.

© Lori Tripoli, 2012