My bride and I decided to go for a walk on the BOARDS last weekend. Near cloudless deep blue sky, about 60 degrees, breeze from the west just strong enough to create that special spray from the waves. We parked our jeep on the beach behind Raging Waters (ok, so a little perk and privilege) and we started our casual walk.
First Stop…..Well we did not get too far as construction workers were busy building a new “under the radar” entrance to Raging Waters. I can’t really talk about it as my brother and our CFO don’t really know anything about it. Let me just say that if the solution to pollution is evolution the water park will continue to evolve. Left there thinking about tree houses for some reason and have this overwhelming desire to build complex cabanas that take on the posture of a tree house.
Second Stop…..About 100 yards away we decided to tour the renovations going on inside the Ghost Ship. As you may know we promised that if we won the Readers Choice Award for Best New Attraction in 2010 that we would develop some major changes inside to make the attraction scarier. I think our spook team (Dino, Terry, Geoff) is really setting the bar high and I can’t wait to get the feedback from our guests.
Third Stop…..About 50 yards away (hard to call this a walk so far) we stopped to see one of my favorite contractors, Anthony DiDonato, whose crew was building a new accessible exit ramp and façade face lift on the Sea Serpent. All I can say is that to know Anthony is to love him, but the process to getting to know him is, let’s just say, unique. He asked me if he could simplify the architects spec on a beam detail and like a wimp I caved in and said ok. Hmmmm, wonder what he would have done if I did not accidentally run into him.
Fourth Stop…..About another 100 yards west we stopped to check out progress on the new renovations to Jumbo’s. I took a picture of the new service bar and emailed it to the architect, Richard Stokes. We need to figure out a way to weather proof this area in order for bartenders to operate during the wind and rain when the outside deck is not open. Yea, it seems simple, but we truly agonize over details like this.
Fifth Stop…..The boardwalk in front of Mariners’ Pier. Lots of spring cleaning and façade upgrades going on to the buildings that were most recently part of Nickel’s Midway Pier and Splash Zone. I understand that after 10 years of litigation there has been a final resolve and what a better way to evidence this than to see some fresh roofing and fresh paint. Heard a rumor that Chickie and Pete’s might even be moving in………this would really be great for the boardwalk and will most certainly keep Curley’s on their toes. At about this point my wife was wondering if there would really be any walking today at all. Message taken and we journeyed almost a half mile til our next stop.
Sixth Stop…..Sam’s Pizza. It is sort of the center of the universe this time of year. You would think there was an upcoming worldwide ban on pizza in the near future based on how many people were there. Kudos to Sam and the great Sam’s team for creating such an iconic institution………oh, and the pizza is da besta!!! Adjacent to Sam’s, the old Gateway 26 façade is undergoing some terrific renovations and my hat goes off to all those involved.
Seventh Stop…..Decided to check out the foundations and site prep on Surfside Pier that we are doing for the arrival of “it” (our new ride for 2011). The final concrete pour was done so I wanted to observe the final height we chose for the base of the ride. No matter how many times we do this there is always an anxious mystery in how the ride layout will look. In this case the ride had to be located in conjunction with what we hope to be a new wooden coaster in the near future. I wouldn’t quite call this blind dart throwing, but it does have its abundant share of mystery and anxiety. We then observed the work from the boardwalk north of the pier as we made some decisions to make sure several rides have good visibility from this vantage point.
Eighth Stop…..Believe it or not we did not stop again until the north end of the boardwalk at 16th Street. And this is where I met Joe from Williamstown, who approached and said, “Hey are you Jack Morey?” to which I answered…..utto! Turns out Joe actually read a few of my blogs which has now given me the desire to write a few more. So Joe, if you are out there and listening…..Thank you for choosing The Wildwoods as your family resort!
We sat on the bench and did a few meaningless texts and emails and thought to ourselves how lucky we were to just be alive on this beautiful day. Which then led to our desire to call our kids (one in California and one in Florida).
Tired from all the walking (or perhaps stopping) we strolled almost non-stop back to our jeep and headed home.