Woot Woot Here Comes Summer

I bet you’re curious…  Yes, this summer at the Jersey Shore is shaping up to be fantastic!  Schools are letting out in the upcoming days and it is time to think Summer Thoughts, namely Firework Displays.

Kaboom is still on the kabash for this year in Red Bank due to organizational and financial issues, but there are still plenty of nearby towns planning on providing spectacular visual entertainment for you and your family.

The longest running event during the Independence Day holiday at the Jersey Shore is the Atlantic Highlands Fireman Fair.  This unique town offers tremendous water views, great restaurants, a marina and fishing boats available to charter throughout the year.  The fair will be going on from July 2-July 6 at Municipal Harbor on Simon Lake Drive.  Circle your calendar for Fireworks on Friday, July 5th with a rain date of Saturday July 7th.

Hazlet is always a winner with fireworks.  Start your holiday weekend early by watching the Wednesday July 3rd display.  Get to Veterans Park, grab a prime spot and wait patiently for the sun to set. (Rain date Friday, July 5th)

Spend the day in Keansburg at the amusement and water parks.  Spend your night ooooing and aaahhhing at the colors exploding across the black canvas of the night sky.   They offer a double feature – Wednesday and Thursday July 3rd and July 4th at dusk – Fishing Pier and Boardwalk

Long Branch proudly presents Oceanfest on Thursday July 4th – all day free family fun can be found.  This annual festival is a crowd pleaser “for shore” with activities happening all day long starting at 10am.  What can be better than good old fashioned family fun at the Promenade in Long Branch!?!  Don’t forget to stop at Strollo’s Lighthouse and cool off or celebrate with an authentic Italian ice or delicious homemade soft serve ice cream.

Union Beach, one of the most devastated Monmouth County communities from Sandy’s wrath, did not have any plans to conduct their annual fireworks display.  Those residents have spent the last 210 days rebuilding their town and their spirits.  One resident entered a contest for a free community fireworks display and Won!  They have not yet posted a date for this wonderful gift that has been bestowed upon them.   Be sure to come and celebrate their victory in determination.  You will never meet a more deserving bunch of people.

So pack up the car and the kiddos – shoot, we’re pet friendly at the Comfort Inn Middletown, so bring the family pet too – and head on down the shore to Exit 117.  There is something to do every day here and we look forward to creating Summer 2013 memories with you!


Spring Has Sprung! Winter is Over!

HAPPY SPRING!! It has been one heck of a winter but finally, officially it has come to an end.  I found this tulip growing in my back yard on the 27th of February and started my spring fever. On the vernal equinox the amount of daylight and darkness are about equal at 12 hours each.  The number of  hours of sunlight increase throughout the season and the first day of summer has the most amount of daylight hours.

Spring rolls into my life slowly and starts with the Mets heading to Port St. Lucie for Spring Training, which is my favorite thing about spring. The start of Daylight Savings Time is probably my second most favorite thing about spring and I look forward to it from the time the clocks are changed in November.

Seeing buds and flowers on the trees always make me happy.  It seems like one day everything goes from dead and brown to green and lush. If I didn’t see robins at Sandy Hook in January I’d say that was a nice sign of spring. But not in January. Wearing flip-flops is pretty high on the list of Happy Spring also.

These are my favorite things about spring, what are yours?

St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the Highlands Saturday, March 19th

The “official” St. Patrick’s Day holiday is tomorrow, March 17th but the celebration keeps going on Saturday, March 19th in Highlands NJ. The 9th Annual St Patrick’s Day Parade is sponsored by the non-profit Highlands Business Partnership.

The parade starts in Huddy Park at 2:00pm and travels a one mile stretch down Bay Avenue. Parade participants include bag pipers, marching bands and floats. Grand Marshal of the 2011 parade is Doug Douty owner of Lusty Lobster, Inc. The seafood Company sells live Maine lobsters, live shellfish, and the largest selection of fresh and frozen seafood products from all over the world.

The Competition of Floats categories include “Best of Show”, “Prettiest” and “Most Original”.  This year there will also be a trophy awarded for “Best of Apparatus”. All fire companies will honor a silent march in tribute to all of our fallen fire fighters.

Highlands Business Partnership will be running a Pot Of Gold 50/50 raffle to support the HBP and of course the winner.   Free giveaways will be thrown from the floats. Live entertainment is also planned at all 20 restaurants.

For more complete information visit the Highlands St. Patrick’s Day Parade page or click on the link on HighlandsNJ.com home page.

Thank YOU Mother Nature (or Congress) Daylight Savings Time Is Here!

Just a friendly (and happy)  reminder that Daylight Savings Time will occur Sunday at 1:59am where the clock will jump to 3:00am.  I thought this picture was funny…

The start of Daylight Savings Time is one of my favorite signs of spring.  I love being able to leave work and have some daylight to enjoy afterward. Some people I have spoken with find it very disruptive. What are some of your favorite signs that spring is on its way?

Valentines Day 2011 Hotel Special and the Outback Steakhouse

Whoa!  Where did the time go? It’s already Groundhog Day and that means Valentines Day is only 12 days away. The very fact that Valentine’s Day falls on a Monday this year gives us a great reason to offer a great special for an extended period!  Book any room type at the Comfort Inn Middletown for just $89.99 while room types last. The special will run from Friday, February 11 through Sunday, February 20, 2011 (my birthday woo hoo!).  Call the hotel directly at 732.671.3400 and mention the Valentine’s Day Special to take advantage of this deal.

The Outback Steakhouse located 10 feet from the hotel has a great Sweetheart Meal Special they are running Friday, February 11 through Monday, February 14, 2011. The special includes:

  • Bloomin’ Onion to Share
  • Two 9 Ounce Outback Special Sirloins
  • Choice of Freshly Made Side and Signature Salad Per Person
  • A Slice of Classic Cheesecake to Share

That is way more food than I would be able to consume but it sounds fabulous and for $37.99 plus tax and gratuity per couple, you really can’t go wrong.  Contact the Outback directly for pricing at 732.796.0110.  Happy Valentine’s Day to you, we hope to see you over our way.

Have Blizzard Cabin Fever? Get Out! (For New Year’s Eve)

I can’t believe the year is almost over.  Where did 2010 go? I should have written this post awhile ago but with Christmas preparations, New Year’s Eve got lost in the hustle.  Not to mention the additional craziness added  by the blizzard.  If you have been snowbound, feeling a little stir crazy or just need a night out to let your hair down (or up for that matter), just do it. Comfort Inn Middletown-Red Bank is located near all of these great New Years Eve events in Red Bank and Middletown.   This of course is just a sampling and if you know of any others please leave them in the comments below.

Jacques Caterers here in Middletown will be hosting their annual New Year’s Eve gala starting at 8:00pm.  It includes cocktail hour, dinner buffet, open bar until 1:00am, midnight champagne toast, dessert station, espresso bar. For more information visit Jacques website.

Shadowbrook is offering the “Ultimate Package’ with dancing to Billy Drew Entertainment, cocktail hour with passed hors d oeuvres, hold and cold presentations, pasta station, chafer selections and  caviar in The Victorian Suite.  A sit down dinner and open bar will be served along with dancing in The Regency Room from 9:00pm to 1:00am.  For full details visit Shadowbrook website.

Count Basie Theatre will again, for the 12th time, produce a great show with Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes featuring performances of fan faves. The show starts at 9:00pm.  For additional info visit Count Basie Theatre’s website.

Gaetano’s Restaurant of Red Bank is pleased to announce their New Year’s Eve Menu.
Located on Wallace Street in downtown Red Bank, NJ,  Gaetano’s offers you a wide variety of options, including salads, appetizers, homemade pastas, entrées, and desserts.   All items are available a la carte, however, Gaetano’s is also offering a 5 course meal for $64.95.   To view their  New Year’s Eve menu visit Gaetano’s Website.  Reservations are strongly recommended, contact Gaetano’s at 732-741-1321 or make reservations online.

The Downtown will be offering reservations for the tables in the lounge. Tables can be reserved anytime after 8:00, for $25.00 per person. For guests not wishing to make a reservation for a table, The Downtown will be charging a $20.00 cover at the door, for standing room only. A champagne toast will be offered at midnight, to all guests of the lounge. The Downtown will be offering our full menu for guests of the lounge. For flyer and more information visit The Downtown website.

Taste embodies a chic lounge, event space, and nightclub all in one. This New Years Eve celebrate while enjoying continuous cocktails, lavish food, dance, and toast while watching the ball drop live from Times Square. Party includes premium top shelf open bar from 9 p.m. to 1:30 a.m., hors d’ oeuvres, lavish food, party favors, complimentary champagne toast at midnight and surprise gifts in the balloon drop.  Music provided by This is Entertainment. Tickets are limited, for more info visit Metromix New Jersey.

Have a safe and joyous new year. I hope you get the opportunity to get out and enjoy the evening.  Again, if you know about anything that I may have missed drop me a line and a link in the comments below.

*Image from dialoguewithdaila.wordpress.com *Header Image from http://quick-dish.tablespoon.com/2010/12/26/new-years-eve-party-guide/ it was too yummy looking to resist…

Holiday Events in Middletown

I received all of this information in an email from Middletown c3alert.  There was no point re-inventing the wheel, so I copied, pasted and here you go.

Poricy Park Holiday Shop
Opens Nov 26, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Visit the Annual Holiday Shop to find handcrafted treasures for family and friends. The Holiday Shop will be open Friday, November 26 through Sunday, December 5; and Friday, December 10 through Sunday, December 12. Hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day. Created by Poricy Park members, unique items include exquisite quilts, jewelry, ornaments, wreaths and more, perfect for gift giving. Run by member volunteers, a percentage of the proceeds are donated to the Park. The park is located at 345 Oak Hill Road. www.poricypark.org | 732-842-5966.

Winter Wonderland
Fri Dec 3, 7:00 p.m., Sat, Dec 4, 2:00 & 7:00 p.m.
Winter Wonderland at the Middletown Arts Center is a family friendly holiday show featuring dance and music performances by Miss Deena’s Dance students and select 2010 Talent Showcase performers. Tickets are $5 per person and advance purchase is strongly recommended since seating is limited! Show days and times are Friday, December 3 at 7:00 p.m. and Saturday, December 4 at 2:00 and 7:00 pm. Middletown Arts Center, 36 Church Street| www.middletownarts.org | 732-706-4100

Breakfast with Santa
Sat, Dec 4, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Families will enjoy a buffet breakfast at Jacques Reception Center and have a chance to meet and talk with Santa Claus. A DJ will be on hand to provide a morning of entertainment. A professional photographer will take a COMPLIMENTARY PHOTO OF YOUR CHILDREN WITH SANTA (1 5×7 and 4 wallets that you will be able to take home with you by the end of the celebration). ONE SITTING PER FAMILY. All participants over the age of 2 will receive a gift from Santa. If anyone under the age of 2 is going to attend, please include them on the registration form. Buffet Menu will include: fruit, breads, eggs, French toast, potatoes, bacon & sausage, drinks & dessert. $27.00/person ages 5 & up, $16.00/ person ages 2-4. This event is hosted by Middletown Parks Recreation and Cultural Affairs. www.middletownnj.org| 732-615-2260.

7th Annual Poricy Park Trail Run/Walk
Sat, Dec 4 – 8:30 a.m.
The 7th Annual Poricy Park Trail Run/Walk, held in conjunction with the Jersey shore Running Club, is scheduled for the morning of Saturday, December 4. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m., race starts at 9:30a.m. There is a 2K Fun Run for kids, a 5K Run/Walk, and a 5-Mile Run. This is one of only a few runs in New Jersey that offers the scenic beauty and variety of a nature conservancy with rolling trails, mostly grass and dirt terrain. For those daring to go further, the 5 Mile Run will take you out onto street pavement and will finish inside the Park. Entry fees include a free T-Shirt to the first 100 paid registrants and trophies to the winners. The Trail Run has become one of our important fundraising events of the year. All proceeds help support Poricy Park Conservancy throughout the year. The park is located at 345 Oak Hill Road. www.poricypark.org | 732-842-5966.

Holiday Extravaganza |Tree Lighting
Sun, Dec 5, 5:00 p.m.

This yuletide celebration held at the Middletown Arts Center, 36 Church Street, includes New Jersey’s only performance of TubaChristmas, tree lighting, visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, carols, crafts, and more. This event is hosted by the Middletown Township Cultural and Arts Council. Free.| www.middletownarts.org | 732-706-4100

Snow Ball
Friday, Dec 10, 7 p.m.
This holiday party, held at the Middletown Arts Center, 36 Church Street, features sensational student demonstrations, a fabulous Dessert bar, hours of general dancing and stunning dance show! The Snow Ball is hosted by the Middletown Township Cultural and Arts Council. Tickets $30 per person semi-formal attire. www.middletownarts.org| 732-706-4100.

Holiday Train Ride
Sat, Dec 11, 10 a.m. or 1 p.m.
The train rides will feature a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, carolers, roving entertainment and more. Each train ride is approximately 2 hours and departs from the Middletown Train Station. Each child over the age of 1 will receive a goody bag. Under the age of 1 is free, however a ticket is still needed. Registrants will be assigned a specific location on the train at the time of registration. It is highly recommended that if you would like to sit with other families that you all register early and at the same time. Price $14.00 per person (non-refundable). This event is hosted by Middletown Parks Recreation and Cultural Affairs. www.middletownnj.org | 732-615-2260

Natural Ornaments
Sun, Dec 14, 1:30–3:00 p.m.
Come to the Poricy Park Conservancy & make appealing decorations using a variety of natural ingredients. Take it home or give as a gift and brighten any room with your unique creation. Appropriate for all (children must be supervised/aided by an adult). Nature Center. The park is located at 345 Oak Hill Road. Meet at the Nature Center. www.poricypark.org | 732-842-5966.

Senior Center December Birthday Party
Thurs, Dec. 16, 1:00 p.m.
Come and make your spirits bright with Holiday Music & Song by Rich Marzek and members of the Happy Days String Band! Refreshments offered. Transportation is available by advance reservations for registered members only. Middletown Senior Center| 900 Leonardville Road | www.middletownnj.org |732-615-2265

Candlelight Reception at Historic Murray Farmhouse
Saturday, Dec 26, 4:00–6:00 p.m.
Don’t miss this relaxing favorite held at the Poricy Park Conservancy’s historic Murray Farmhouse. Time to let the busyness go. We’ll pour you a cup of warm cider while you enjoy the sweet sounds of our minstrel Tony Sloan! Children must be accompanied and supervised by an adult. Walk-ins welcome. Donations greatly appreciated. The park is located at 345 Oak Hill Road. Meet at the Murray Farmhouse. www.poricypark.org | 732-842-5966.

Pre-New Year’s Party
Tues, Dec. 28, 11:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The Middletown Senior Center will ring in 2011 at Lakeside Manor, Hwy. 36, Hazlet, with a pre-celebration luncheon featuring: soup, salad, choice of crusted tilapia, sirloin of beef, or chicken parmesan & dessert. Musical entertainment by the fabulous Tomardo! Party hats, noisemakers and lots of fun! Tickets are $25.00 and can be purchased at the Senior Center, 900 Leonardville Road until Dec. 21. Transportation available by advance reservation for registered members only. www.middletownnj.org | 732-615-2265.

Pre-New Year’s Dance Party
Wed, Dec 29, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Middletown students grades K-5 and their parents are invited to ring in the New Year at the Croydon Hall Gym, 900 Leonardville Rd, for this fun-filled afternoon. A DJ will provide music, fun and games. Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase. Bring your own lunch or order some pizzas to be delivered. There is a $5.00 per person (including adults) fee for admission to be paid at the door. This event is hosted by Middletown Parks Recreation and Cultural Affairs. www.middletownnj.org | 732-615-2260.

Days Off From School at MAC
The Middletown Arts Center will offer “Day Off from School” Programs for elementary age children on December 27, 28, 29, and 30th. Half and full-day programs are available featuring fun with the Doodle Dude, dancing and other art enrichment experiences. Half-day program is $20 for members/$25 for Non-members (per day) and full-day program is $40 for members and $50 for non-members. Pre-registration is required. Middletown Arts Center, 36 Church Street| www.middletownarts.org | 732-706-4100.

Winter Delights 2010: Plein Air and Beyond
MAC Gallery Exhibit
The Plein Air Painters of the Jersey Coast focus on “plein air” painting on location to explore the beauty of the Central New Jersey coastal area. The winter exhibit is on display at the Middletown Arts Center, 36 Church Street through December 31. Their work covers many types of art executed both outdoors and in the studio. The PAPJC Annual Show provides the opportunity to the artists to share the full range of their work, from still life to landscape. Sales of works in the show help to benefit the Middletown Arts Center, 36 Church Street. www.middletownarts.org | 732-706-4100