The middle of December — sounds like a great time to start thinking about summer.

Towns along New Jersey's shoreline have already opened their doors and mailboxes for beach badge sales, promoting the seasonal tags as holiday gifts, many times with a winter twist.

"Santa Shark," pictured above, is the face of the 2020 season badge in Long Beach Township. About 1,250 of the 3,000 limited-edition badges have been sold so far, according to Renee Gresko, administrative assistant for the township's beach patrol.

"The past two years we have sold out of them," Gresko said.

Holiday badges for the 2020 season are already sold out this year in Sea Isle City, according to the municipality's website.

In most spots, the preseason offering — scratch that, extremely preseason offering — comes with a discount compared to the in-season rate.

Here are some  holiday-time beach-badge sales at the Jersey Shore (adult prices listed only).

Select beaches charge no admission fee all year round, including Atlantic City and the Wildwoods.

CAPE MAY COUNTY

  • CAPE MAY — December 2-31, $20 ($25 on January 1, $30 on April 1)
  • OCEAN CITY — On sale now, $20

MONMOUTH COUNTY

  • BELMAR — Badges on sale starting December 1
  • BRADLEY BEACH —December 2-31, $50 ($75 on January 2, $100 on April 1)
  • LONG BRANCH — November 1-January 31, $40 (regular rate, $45)
  • MANASQUAN — December 9-15, $80

OCEAN COUNTY

  • BARNEGAT LIGHT — On sale now, $30 (price good through June 5)
  • BEACH HAVEN — On sale now, $30
  • BERKELEY — On sale now, $40
  • LAVALLETTE — On sale beginning December 2, $50 preseason pricing
  • LONG BEACH — November 29-December 31 ($35, $45 on June 16)
  • SHIP BOTTOM — On sale no, $37
  • SURF CITY — October 18-December 15, $37

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