Our 20th annual trip to Wildwood, our 9th at the Pan American which has become our Wildwood home. I arrived on Saturday around Noon, I didn't take my usual early Spring day trip so this was the first time coming back since last Summer and the excitement makes me feel like a kid every time. There is no feeling like the final moments before you get in the car to drive down and are packing the final bags into the car in the quiet hot sunshine. The trip for me is about 1 1/2 hours down the Parkway and we made it down with little traffic.
I have been in the same room at the Pan American for several years now, it's like seeing an old friend when I open the door. This was my girlfriends first time down with the family, she has quickly become a Wildwood fanatic. We spent the day at the beach and then returned to the room to get cleaned up for dinner. On the way we stopped at Sunset Lake which was the perfect opportunity for me to propose. She said yes!!! From there we were going to go to The Boathouse for dinner but the line out the door had us change our minds. We decided to go to Mom and Pops, a new place just off the Boardwalk by Douglass Fudge. What a pleasant surprise this place was. The portions were huge and the food delicious. One of the owners came over and chatted with us for a while and was so friendly. Give this place a try if you haven't yet, and try the candied bacon. Each booth has a little TV playing old TV shows.
We spend the rest of the evening walking the Boardwalk, the Zoom Phloom was down which was a bummer but a great night taking in all the sights and sounds with my new Fiance.
Sunday morning we hang around the Boardwalk and take a trip to the Museum to pick up a birthday gift from my parents, a real cool neon sign. My music room is Wildwood themed so this is perfect.
Everyone else arrives around 3pm so we help them unpack and then head to Alosi's for dinner. We have been eating at Alosi's as long as I can remember and Maggie the owner has gotten to know us over the years, she is such a nice person. They did some redecorating over the winter and the restaurant looks great. They also opened up the sun porch type room adjacent to the pool so it's now more of an outdoor seating area. The food as always is great. the Pan American also did some work over the winter to the front of the hotel adding some new outdoor seating and the entrance area. The Morey's always do great work, I believe the new wall is covered in lava rock.
Monday-Wednesday our routine is mostly the same, we like to get to the beach early by 9:30am and stay there until around 3. The weather was supposed to be lousy but fortunately it held out each day and we had a good deal of sunshine. The ocean was a little chilly but the waves were just right. We spent the evenings on the Boardwalk. It was crowded every night but a much more normal crowd than we saw last Summer. We rode the Great White twice, my favorite coaster. We also tried the Runaway Tram for the first time this year, now I might just be a major whimp but for a small coaster this thing does get some good speed and g forces.
Great views from the Giant Wheel
We ordered Mack's Pizza to the hotel one night. I'd like to say it was great but this time just wasn't as good as usual, super greasy. I know don't ban me from the forum now lol
The view from my room. The Crest is adding new playground equipment to the little park next to the hotel.
And my parents' ocean front room
The Port Royal added their painted flags all around the hotel, it adds a lot of life to the hotel.
Wednesday night our last night we spent a good deal of time at Randy's Retro Arcade for Fascination. So much fun as always, we played some old pinball games as well. I prefer this type of arcade 1000x over the ones full of crane games that just frustrate you and take your money with no enjoyment. At the Douglass Pavillion there is a guy doing caricatures. He's really good and nice to talk to.
Our last night on the balcony, my room looks right up the main road which is an enjoyable view in itself when the beach gets too dark to see.
Our last morning's sunrise
My parents head home right after breakfast. My fiance' and I as well as my sister and her fiance' decided to hang around a little while longer. We ended up renting bikes and riding all the way to the Hereford Inlet Lighthouse. Morning bikerides are so enjoyable.
After that it was time to head back home, thankful for another year of wonderful memories. I always say the annual family trip in my mind is like another reality, every year's memories mixing together when we are all there together, as if time waits in between. The magic of Wildwood never fails if you take in every sound, smell and sight. We make it back home in good time and after dinner we felt bored after being so used to being busy. So we have a crazy thought and decide to take the quick 15 minute ride over to Seaside and walk that Boardwalk and get some Kohrs, home sweet home.