Some random notes and thoughts on this final weekday of January and the coldest day of winter so far:

  • I notice when I come in to work in the morning there are still some homes decorated and lit up for Christmas. I’m assume it’s because it makes them feel better to keep the spirit of the holiday season alive.  My questions is when are they planning to take the decorations down. OR are they not planning to do so.  Is it possible somebody is going to leave their house decorated until next Christmas?  Inquiring minds want to know!
  • Congratulations to Dan Coleman and Joe DePasquale, co-owners of Caffrey’s Tavern in Forked River. I go back with these guys to our days (and nights) at Ocean County College and they have fought adversity, bureaucracy and more to re-open their very popular bar and restaurant.  It was September 5, 2018 when much of Caffrey’s was destroyed by an accidental fire and 2 ½ years later they opened the doors again on Thursday.  However during that time they opened a second bar and restaurant on the same property and Caffrey’s Backyard has become a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.  Best wishes boys. Hope to see you soon.
Sign outside Caffrey’s Tavern in Forked River (photo provided)
  • Speaking of restaurants. I continue to lobby for us to support them in whatever way we can, whether it’s indoor dining, ordering take-out or buying gift cards.  We are in the throes of winter and even during normal times this can be challenging, especially for those in the beach area.  Remember you are not just supporting the owner but those who work there as well.
  • I used to joke that the two leading scorers in the history of the WOBM Christmas Classic were Sam Fagan and Vinnie Arminio. When Fagan’s dad Joe coached at Jackson Memorial I would have to chase him off the court because even as a little kid he was always looking to shoot baskets.  Sam, by the way, is now a senior standout at Neptune High School.  Arminio’s dad Joe has been my right hand running the tournament for years and Vinnie spent many days and nights inside the RWJBarnabas Health Arena, some of them playing for Toms River East.  The 29-year old is now the first year head coach at Toms River South and last night collected his first coaching victory as the Indians beat Donovan Catholic.  Congrats Vinnie on the first of many!
Vinnie Arminio (Steve Mayer, Townsquare Media NJ)

Light Up Ocean County Finalists