The Mayor Makes How Much?

🎡 Ocean City, NJ's only weekly newsletter

Things are slowing down as summer comes to an end, but still plenty to get to— including a review for The Betz Room.

In the email today:

📆 Upcoming events

😎 Sponsor: Knockaround Sunglasses

💰 Mayor’s salary revealed

👮‍♂️ Police Chief Jay Prettyman retiring

🐋 Windmill updates

💩 All-time worst take (part deux)

👨‍🍳 Restaurant review

🏠 Real estate update

👶 Kid’s corner

🌊 Weather and tides

📆 Upcoming Events in (and around) Ocean City

  • August 25

    • Beach Concert— Tom Hambridge and The Rattle Snakes and E-Street Shuffle (Somers Point)

      • When: 7:00 p.m.

      • Where: William Morrow Beach

      • Description: Four-time Grammy award winner along with Bruce Springsteen tribute band.

  • August 26

    • Somers Point Farmers Market (Somers Point)

      • When: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

      • Where: Somers Mansion, 1000 Shore Rd.

      • Description: It’s a farmer’s market, folks.

    • Concert Under The Stars— Steely Dan Tribute (Sea Isle)

      • When: 7:30 p.m.

      • Where: Excursion Park

      • Description: Free outdoor concert.

  • August 27

    • Jackie Evancho Performing with the OC Pops

      • When: 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

      • Where: Music Pier

      • Description: America’s Got Talent vet with gold and platinum albums selling over 2.5 million in the US. Tickets here.

    • Stone Harbor Farmers Market (Stone Harbor)

      • When: 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

      • Where: 95th Street and Second Ave.

      • Description: Farmer’s market.

  • August 28

    • George Thorogood and the Destroyers

      • When: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

      • Where: Music Pier

      • Description: 50 years of rock. Tickets here.

    • Somers Point Kid’s Concert Series— The Super Mario Bros Movie (Somers Point)

      • When: 6:30 p.m.

      • Where: William Morrow Beach

      • Description: Super Mario Movie shown on the beach.

    • Family Fun Night — Frozen Fever (Sea Isle)

      • When: 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

      • Where: Excursion Park

      • Description: Stage show begins at 7:30 p.m.

  • August 29

    • George Thorogood and the Destroyers

      • When: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

      • Where: Music Pier

      • Description: 50 years of rock. Tickets here.

    • Funtastic Tuesdays

      • When: 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

      • Where: Downtown Asbury

      • Description: Entertainment, face painters, balloon sculptors.

    • Mummers Night

      • When: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

      • Where: Boardwalk

      • Description: Mummers strut the Boards.

    • Beach Movie — Black Panda: Wakanda Forever (Avalon)

      • When: Dusk (figure around 8:30 p.m.)

      • Where: 30th Street Beach

      • Description: Movie on the beach, rain date August 30

  • August 30

    • Farmers Market

      • When: 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

      • Where: Tabernacle Grounds at 6th and Asbury

      • Description: Farmers market.

    • The Great American Songbook

      • When: 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

      • Where: Music Pier

      • Description: Opera, Broadway. Tickets here.

    • Crafty Wednesday (Avalon)

      • When: 10:00 a.m.

      • Where: Avalon Free Public Library

      • Description: Join Miss Paige for a fun arts and crafts project. Kids of all ages welcome.

    • Movie Under The Stars — Top Gun: Maverick (Sea Isle)

      • When: 8:30 p.m.

      • Where: Excursion Park

      • Description: Outdoor movie.

  • August 31

    • Market Days

      • When: 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

      • Where: Downtown Asbury

      • Description: Entertainment, face painters, balloon sculptors.

    • LEGO Thursday (Avalon)

      • When: 10:00 a.m.

      • Where: Avalon Free Public Library

      • Description: Calling all LEGO fans! The library will supply the LEGOS, you supply the imagination. All ages.

    • The Wailers

      • When: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

      • Where: Music Pier

      • Description: Legendary reggae band. Tickets here.

    • Family Night

      • When: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

      • Where: Boardwalk

      • Description: Family-friendly entertainment on the Boardwalk.

    • Thrilling Thursday— Wiffle Ball Home Run Derby (Margate)

      • When: 6:30 p.m., movie at 7:00 p.m.

      • Where: Granville Ave. Beach

      • Description: Games followed Hotel Transylvania 4, rain date September 1

Also note the Ocean City Library has many events for adults and kids alike on their calendar, which can be viewed here.

You can see the full list of events in all nearby Shore towns with the following links: Ocean City | Sea Isle | Margate | Avalon | Stone Harbor | Somers Point | Wildwood | Cape May | Ventnor

Other events to look forward to: John Williams Strikes Back (September 3), Maestro Lee: Dueling Pianos (September 6)

😎 Sponsor: Knockaround Sunglasses

Just so you know we fully endorse this one— here is my collection:

Knockaround Sunglasses are perfect for the beach, Boardwalk, and basically everything you do down the Shore. They are ultra affordable (~$30), stylish, well-made, and feature UV400 protection (the highest UV protection) built into every pair. They literally block the sun better than my $200 pair of Ray-Bans, which I now wear only rarely because Knockarounds are just better for almost every daily use.

What’s more, they have cool collaborations will also sorts of brands, including Major League Baseball, US Soccer, and even Shark Week.

You can get up to 15% off your first order by clicking here.

🤳 News Bits

Mayor Gets a Raise 💰

City Council voted to double the salaries… of City Council members and the Mayor.

Good gig if you can get it, right?

Well, not so fast.

The salaries are much less than you might expect:

  • the mayor gets a raise from $20,600 per year to $40,000 per year

  • City Council members go from $10,300 to $20,000

  • starting in 2025, annual raises will be commensurate with Consumer Price Index (ie inflation)

  • the city estimates there will be an added cost of about $7 per year per taxpayer

Not exactly big numbers here. The city has a $99 million budget and 276 full-time employees. The mayor making $40k per year doesn’t seem excessive.

Police Chief Jay Prettyman Retiring 👮‍♂️

Maybe it was the throngs of unruly teens. Or perhaps it was e-bike road rage. Whatever the case, Police Chief Jay Prettyman is retiring at age 52.

He’s been with the department full-time since 1995 and Chief since 2019.

He’ll be succeeded by Deputy Chief William Campbell, a 30-year veteran of OC police.

In a statement, Mayor Gillian said: “I want to thank the chief for his leadership, especially through some of the challenges we’ve faced in the past few years. I also want to welcome Bill. I’m confident that it will be a seamless transition and that he will continue Ocean City’s proud tradition of public safety.”

For what it’s worth, Prettyman, according to a list of New Jersey police salaries, made $165,194. Not bad.

Windmill Update 🐋

Not so many updates this week after our slew of updates last week.

But, the US Department of the Interior, which designs living rooms for government housing*, just approved a new offshore windmill location 17 miles off the coast of Rhode Island.

*Not actually

It will feature 65 windmills and, supposedly, power 350,000 homes.

News Links 🔗

💩The All-Time Worst Take (Part Deux)

I used this sub-headline last week, but I am running it back because I have found the new worst take of all-time, also courtesy of The Inquirer.

In this case I’m talking about old faithful Amy Rosenberg, who hates the Shore and will wrap up her Shore newsletter for the year this week, a week before Labor Day (please note Walking The Boards publishes all year long).

Her headline is a doozy: Is It (the Shore) Over?

Cool. Should endear her to readers. Let’s see where she takes this:

With this, my final Down the Shore newsletter of the season (Jason Nark will bring Down the Shore to its official 2023 close next week), it’s really started making me wonder. Is the Jersey Shore as we know it, as so many of you have known it for decades and generations, no longer a thing? It is … over?

A lot of readers think so. After Hurricane Sandy, then-New Jersey Gov., now Trump trash-talking presidential candidate Chris Christie vowed that the every-person accessibility and neighborly culture of the Shore would be retained, but in the end, it really wasn’t. Whether it has been as fully obliterated as the imploded former Trump Plaza in Atlantic City though remains to be seen.

But after a three-year pandemic surge, it’s safe to say there are a lot of disillusioned former-Jersey Shore diehards. They wrote to me en masse last week, detailing laughably high weekly rental rates, lack of amenities, unaffordable restaurants (not just pizza), and alternative vacations that were cheaper: like Paris, Barcelona, North Carolina, and the good old Poconos.

They’ve turned their back on the Shore.

The Inquirer

She managed to work Sandy, Chris Christie, and Trump (2x) into a single paragraph. Bonus points there.

What says you, Walking The Boards reader? Are you heading to actual Venice for the boat parade next year?

Reply directly to this email with your thoughts.

👨‍🍳 Restaurant Review: The Betz Room

A trusted partner of Walking The Boards made his second visit to bougie supper club The Betz Room last weekend. It’s in the back of the old Chatterbox (now Green Eggs) and open Thursday-Sunday with Le Bec-Fin alum Geno Betz at the helm. Here is his review.

Their menu changes monthly so we’ve had the opportunity to sample many of their dishes.

Standout appetizers are the Cheese Board, Tuna Tataki (might be the best tuna I’ve had all summer at the shore, and I am a tuna guy), Smoked Bone Marrow and the Tagliatelle Pasta, which was perfectly cooked al dente.

For entrees, their fish selections are fantastic.

The Swordfish from our July visit was great but has since been replaced in August by a beautiful Branzino which was somehow even better. It is prepared whole-fish style accompanied with juicy baby clams and a generous portion of tobiko.

It is obvious the chef and back of house including the food runners take a lot of pride and are passionate about what the kitchen is dishing out.

The front of the house still needs to work out some kinks.

The waitstaff during both visits was just OK and not quite as attentive or professional as they should be in order to match the overall dining experience the Betz Room is striving to obtain.

The membership allows for alcohol in a dry town, so they are going for the speakeasy vibe, which I get and it’s cool. Their front door is always locked, so in order to get in, you must ring a bell outside and wait for someone to open.

The problem is on both visits our party had to wait no less than 5 minutes before the host staff finally strolled over to let us in. Not great to be standing out on busy 9th Street of dry OC with booze in hand, ringing a bell for 5 minutes confused as to why no one is letting you in.

With that said, the food is phenomenal. No other restaurant in OC is doing anything even close to what Betz Room is doing and I’d probably wait outside in traffic for 15 minutes if I had to.

Next time we will bring a beach chair, umbrella and cornhole……we already have the cooler!

🏠 Real Estate Update

Did you know Walking The Boards has a newsletter dedicated to Ocean City Real Estate?

If you would like to opt-in, just click the subscribe button right here:

Shore CribsEverything you need to know about real estate in Ocean City, NJ. Join over 1,500 second-home owners, agents, residents, investors, and renters who subscribe to our newsletter for free.

👶 Kid’s Corner: Ocean City Fishing Center Rocks

Little confession: I don’t like touching fish guts, and I’m kind of a germaphobe. So while I enjoy fishing and crabbing, I don’t particularly love sawing into a half-frozen bunker or ripping a hook out of an eel’s mouth.

But I’d like for the Little Squirts to learn how to fish. So let's give a special shoutout to Ocean City Fishing Center— that big purple building on 3rd and Bay.

You can book a one-hour fishing lesson on the dock where they will show your kids how to bait a hook, cast a line, and safely get your catch back in the water.

You’re almost guaranteed to catch something— me and the Little Squirts caught a sand shark on two different trips, some cutter fish, and a flounder.

Best part? When you’re done, you just leave. No cleanup, no nothing.

Great way to get the kids into fishing.

🌊 Weather and Tides

As always, we recommend getting up-to-date forecasts from THE GOAT of South Jersey weather, NorEaster Nick, directly on his Facebook page. You can also download his app.

Tides (9th Street):

  • Friday (8/25)

    • High 2:18 AM

    • Low: 8:35 AM

    • High: 3:12 PM

    • Low: 9:58 PM

    Saturday (8/26)

    • High: 3:34 AM

    • Low: 9:43 AM

    • High: 4:21 PM

    • Low: 11:04 PM

    Sunday (8/27)

    • High: 4:49 AM

    • Low: 10:52 AM

    • High: 5:25 PM

    Monday (8/28)

    • Low: 12:05 AM

    • High: 5:55 AM

    • Low: 11:57 AM

    • High: 6:25 PM

    Tuesday (8/29)

    • Low: 1:00 AM

    • High: 6:54 AM

    • Low: 12:57 PM

    • High: 7:19 PM

    Wednesday (8/30)

    • Low: 1:50 AM

    • High: 7:47 AM

    • Low: 1:54 PM

    • High: 8:11 PM

Thanks! Enjoy the weekend.

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