There are many people who regard Morey’s Piers as a place of sentimental value because they have been coming to Wildwood with their families since they were children. I, at first, was not one of those people. Before this summer I had never set foot on the island. However, after completing my internship at Morey’s Piers this summer, it has now become a place full of memories, laughter and knowledge.
I applied to Morey’s Piers in February of 2013 looking for an internship so I could gain experience working in operations. It seemed like the opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to live at the shore for the summer and meet people from all over the world. I did not know what the job would entail, but I knew it was the opportunity of a lifetime I had to take.
One of my favorite memories of Morey’s Piers was celebrating Thanksgiving with all of our international associates. Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays because it is not about extravagant gifts or spending money. It is about celebrating a warm meal with the people you care about the most. When I heard volunteers were needed for the event I made sure I was one of the first people to respond. I knew I would help with decorating, but I was also assigned a special task. I was appointed to help the associates embrace the true, traditional, Thanksgiving spirit by becoming a pilgrim and wearing traditional pilgrim attire.
At first I was nervous. It was a big responsibility and I knew that there would be people from every single department in the company attending the event. Despite this, I thought if anyone could bring the energy and enthusiasm needed to make it feel like Thanksgiving, it was me. We decorated Raging Waters picnic area with hay, apples, pumpkins, corn and elegant white table cloths. Tania, the event coordinator, handled setting up the event with grace and ease. It was so well organized and she did not fret even when the weather seemed less than desirable because of the rain.
As the day went by the weather improved, and by the time dinner rolled around it was the perfect weather for our Thanksgiving meal. Finally, it was time for me to make my transition into a pilgrim. I got dressed in a long sleeved black dress with a white apron, a white bonnet and black shoes with gold buckles. I took my position next to the entrance of the event and watched the trickle of guests turn into a flood of associates. People showed up from all departments: ride operators, food and beverage associates, game operators, even the living dead from Ghost Ship. As the associates walked in, I saw their eyes light up as Thanksgiving came to life with the décor and other Thanksgiving characters: a male pilgrim, an Indian Chief and of course the turkey!
That Thanksgiving we celebrated in July is my favorite Morey’s Piers memory. It made me think back to the true reasons we celebrate Thanksgiving. It was a gathering of people from different backgrounds celebrating different traditions in a place foreign from all that they have ever known. Although I am from the United States, like my foreign associates I also came to Wildwood without knowing the surrounding area, any of my coworkers or what to expect from the experience.
By the end of the day, I realized there was a lot to be thankful about. As the food settled in our stomachs, the crowd slowly died down and we removed the decorations, I thought about my experience here in Wildwood. I thought of all the wonderful friends I had made, the unforgettable adventures we had taken, the different cultures I had learned about and the work experience I had gained from being an Operations Intern. I had expected to learn a lot from my internship at Morey’s Piers, but I never could have imagined that Wildwood and Morey’s Piers would become such an emotional, sentimental place.