Turning the Page: Ocean County, NJ Commissioner looks back on summer success and previews shoulder season
The summer season is winding down with about two weeks left to spare to enjoy some warmer temps, sunshine and more before it starts to feel and look like fall at the Jersey Shore.
While the numbers are still being tallied up from the summer as we head into shoulder season, Ocean County Commissioner Joe Vicari is feeling pretty good about the summer of 2022.
"We had a fantastic year this year, not only in Ocean County but also the entire Jersey Shore, not only was it fantastic, the weather agreed with us -- we had very few days of rain or storms," Vicari tells Townsquare Media. "The water was absolutely perfect. We've been blessed in Ocean County with 44-miles of the best oceanfront property you can find anyplace along the Atlantic Coast and I would even say the United States, not only because of the water but because of the fine sugar type sand that we do have and it was very clean."
Commissioner Vicari also points to some financial success this summer as well in Ocean County.
"What really helped us, even during times of inflation -- we tried to make it family oriented -- with inflation, the restaurants and the businesses took that in mind and most people came to Ocean County because they could afford it and they didn't want to go anyplace else, the gas prices fluctuated but it was reasonable," Vicari said. "Property values went up, as we all know, rentals did very, very well. We were very fortunate for this year."
As for shoulder season in Ocean County, there will be plenty to do with the family.
"We have many, many special events that are taking place throughout all of Ocean County, many events are taking place on the boardwalk, we have from Point Pleasant to Seaside Heights to Long Beach Island, Jenkinson's -- they all have special events taking place," Vicari said. "If the weather's poor or overcast and they (people) want something different, they can go see Ocean County College and the Planetarium, we have our 27 parks which are some of the finest parks you'll find anyplace in the state, our libraries are open -- all 21 branches -- we have the largest library system, so, we have a mixture of what you can do as far as being outside and going inside."
There's also specialty events taking place in the shoulder/fall season as well in Ocean County.
"We have everything from the western part from farmland to open spaces to the Forked River Mountain area to the State Park, so, we've been very, very fortunate," Vicari said. "I think most important, now, is the events that are taking place every single week in Ocean County. We have Chowder Fest, Sail Fest, car shows, the Oktober Fest, and of course, the Columbus Day Parade that takes place in October, we have one of the largest Halloween Parades (Toms River) in the United States, so, there are many, many different events."