Traditions, Routines and Habits of Jersey Shore Visitors

HarborMornings 021The Jersey Shore, particularly the South Jersey Shore creates a comfort zone for people to be drawn back again and again. Habits, make that routines, are developed by families.

Generations return not only to towns but to same lodging locations. Occasionally they arrive well before check-in time, make their presence known, and immediately head out to their favorite must-visit restaurant for breakfast or lunch.

“I’ll go make reservations for eight at the Blue Pig,” declares one family member, while the rest settle up bills and get parking passes. “Let’s head to the Mad Batter for lunch,” another family broadcasts to the rest of the group.

Some shore visitors have regular stops along the way or as they arrive into town. In Cape May, cars turn at the giant Lobster House sign as if on auto-pilot. Even up the road in Ocean City, people like to stop at the Chatter Box prior to checking into their reserved lodging.

A scene repeated  every Saturday morning at hotels, motels and even real estate offices, when people pick up keys for weekly rentals on change over day at nearly every shore destination.

Traditions, routines, habits-whatever you call them have always intrigued me. Many people rent the same house, the same room (don’t dare move me) at the same time of year. No judgement here. I myself have rented the same apartment in the same house in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands for three consecutive years. Something draws us back to familiar surroundings. What is it? What are your traditional plans for the family vacation?


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  1. July 19, 2014 / 2:43 pm

    So true! We all are creatures of habit. Tenants checking out today- 17th summer in the same townhouse. Another arriving for their 20th year in Avalon. Wonderful family traditions.

    • JohnCooke
      July 19, 2014 / 4:01 pm

      Likewise Ann, at the Victorian people say they’ve been here since the beginning. 30+ Years

  2. Maureen McLaughlin
    July 20, 2014 / 2:43 pm

    I wouldn’t dare go “Down na Shore” without at LEAST one night spent at the Lobster House – I Love EVERYTHING ABOUT IT – waiting for your table while enjoying a Bloody Mary on the Scooner – their Ribs and Lobster are the BEST EVERRRRR….. To me – the Lobster House – COMPLETES the trip “Down na Shore”

    • JohnCooke
      July 21, 2014 / 9:43 am

      Yes Maureen a trip to the Lobster House is on everyone’s agenda at some point in their trip. Thanks for reading and commenting on the blog. 😉 😉

  3. Nicole
    August 2, 2014 / 5:20 pm

    Cape may is our oasis of relaxation and family time. We have been going to the same place to stay for years and have our favorite dining spots…. We will return in a week and are venturing to new restaurants, looking forward!!! But we always make our rounds to the usual happy places in the zen of cape may.

  4. Marsha OKeefe
    September 22, 2014 / 1:48 pm

    My husband’s family has been coming here since the early 60’s. They even watched the first moon walk from Cape May. My first visit was with them in 1973, a senior in high school. We wore long dresses to go out to dinner. Now, after being married to my husband for almost 40 years and 4 children and 8 grandchildren we still come back to Cape May. Just spent a wonderful week here in August with all 17 of us and found out a new grandchild will be arriving in February of 2015. What a wonderful week we had here with 8 grandchildren, the oldest of which is 9. Two of my daughter-in-laws brought extended family members and my husband’s sister and her family all came so we had 26 people on the beach together. What a hoot!! So much fun and laughing. Had such a great time that I already booked the same place for my family for next year. So looking forward to it. Always stayed on Perry Street or nearby. Now we have 5 units at Victorian. Just love it. We are so blessed to be able to enjoy such a wonderful place with all of our family members.

    • JohnCooke
      September 22, 2014 / 3:20 pm

      What a delightful family history of Cape May visits. Thanks for sharing and for reading and commenting on the blog.