You may think the summer season officially starts on Memorial Day, but we actually start cooking up the campaign for next summer before this one is even over. We’ve used Elvis impersonators, photographed kids suspended upside down, gotten up at 3 AM to catch the perfect sunrise (and then done it all over again the next day because the perfect sunrise wasn’t quite perfect enough), and even made one of the Morey brothers dress up like a grandmother – we’ll let you guess which one. We like to keep it fun, light, and quirky – just like Wildwood.
Then the summer of 2020 happened.
We weren’t even sure we were going to have a summer, and looking back it didn’t look anything like the summers we know and love. We had to wear masks. We had to avoid being too close to one another. And we had to worry. Summer isn’t for worrying! That’s for winter.
We all wish that summer could last a little longer – time flies when you’re coastin’ on the coast – but we never dreamed of a year where summer wouldn’t show. So needless to say, when we starting preparing for this summer we wanted to do something special. Something that would allow us all to reconnect with what we love about summer, and to do it together. Hey! – we’re allowed to hug again… even Fauci said it’s cool.
What better way to get summer back on track than write a love letter to the sun-soaked season from all of us.
Our family, your family, Wildwood, and whoever else comes to spend some of their summer with us this year. We took to the interwebs and scoured it for the best photos that you’ve taken over the years on the Piers. We were blown away by the positive responses we got when we asked if we could use them as part of our summer campaign. That was the first sign that we were on to something here.
Then we got together with some very talented kids from the area and created a commercial. Grandparents: you can find it interrupting your program on TV. Kids: peep it out on YouTube. It’s our letter to summer from all of us and it goes something like this:
Feels like forever since we’ve seen you – what a bummer. Last winter?.. even glummer.
Grey skies colder, needed a shoulder to cry on dreamed of coasters to fly on, bathing suits to try on
let’s let by–gones be bygones.
We twisted and turned to you for years, and cheers, to conquer all our fears of dipping and flipping and loop-de-looping.
There’s no more cooping us up. The rooster has clucked!
Time for your warm sun to rise. Nothing but blue skies. Oh my’s! waterslides, and the Curliest of Fries.
Games of chance. A wave-side romance. Water-slide wedgies and BFF pledgies to never - let another - summer pass.
Close this chapter on English class from the living room,
and make some room for living - again.
Summer, old friend. We hope you’ll never end,
but love to see you just around the bend.
We hit the recording studio with our 12 year-old narrator, Halle Chaffee, who we discovered at the Delaware Childrens’ Theater. After Halle brought the words to life, we invited up-and-coming musician, and NJ native, Nico Fassell and his Gibson flying-V in to record the music he wrote for the spot. The video begins with an epic Hollywood-style establishing shot of 9-year-old Zuri Hunter under the landmark Morey’s Piers sign. You might recognize Zuri – she’s been part of our advertising for years and started working with us when she was 6. Next, we added in over 50 images that we sourced from you and sprinkled in a few of our own from the archives. And then we sent our agency folks out at the butt-crack of dawn to get that perfect sunrise video we mentioned earlier.
It was a full-on team effort, but not to worry – If you didn’t get one of your pics in the spot we’ve got you covered. We made sure that everyone could get involved and gave you a place to write your own letter to Summer at www.moreyspiers.com/DearSummer. And just so it doesn’t feel like another summer English assignment (ugh!), we sweetened the pot with a free weekend getaway for one lucky writer.
Sounds like a lot for just an ad campaign about summer.
But then again, this was no ordinary summer. We think we’re just riding rides, sliding slides, or downing some funnel cake– but we’re all making memories with our kids that they’ll look back on when they have their kids. That’s what this year’s Dear Summer campaign was all about. Unfortunately, it took missing a summer to realize it. But fortunately, we did, and this summer was ready to love us back!