So friends I start this report while sitting on my balcony at the Pan American on our 18th annual family vacation. This is our 7th year at the Pan American and my 3rd in this room, it’s like seeing an old friend walking through the door. I always say this and I’m glad it’s still true, when I’m down for these vacations it‘s as if we had never left and just pick right back up from every previous trip, like one long journey. There is a tiny mark I make with the year in an impossible to find spot in the room with the year and when I see the previous years it hits home how fast time and life goes by. Now that I’ve told you how crazy I am here are some photos of the trip so far and observations....
The new McDonalds looks great coming on the island. I hear people arent thrilled with the interior but the exterior came out great and compliments the Wawa and other newer Doo-Wop signs great. I only wish McDonalds got a new sign made of neon. Also, the motel district really still does look great. Pretty much all the motel’s left look to be well maintained and the sight coming into the Crest is still great. Starlux mini golf, the Wildwoods sign and the whole area was busy.
Left home in Tom’s River and made it down in about 1:45 minutes and arrived around 10:30am. It was a 10/10 beach day, warm water and just enough waves to keep things fun. The weekends are definitely more crowded than the weekdays.
Dinner at the Doo-Wop Diner which has always remained good as far as I’m concerned. I had the “Porky Pig” which is a BBQ pulled pork and an Egg Cream. Walked to the end of the boardwalk, back to the hotel and decided to head back up again at night. The boardwalk was packed, a younger crowd on the weekend for sure by everyone having a good time. Saw Gig all over the boards keeping the trams running smooth as usual. Pops Popcorn place looks good but wasn’t busy, I hope they pick up as it’s a nice looking business. i also noticed a few new stores selling Wildwood shirts etc that actually looked quite nice, hopefully we see more of that and less of those discount stores with boxes piled everywhere.
Did something new and stopped in the Boardwalk Chapel. Apparently it was BBQ and Blues weekend or something on the island and they had a band in playing some Christian Blues and Rock. Everyone was very nice and the band was quite good.
Obligatory sign picture.
Got fries at Grab a Weiner, they were good but I want to get Curleys next.
New Ice Cream truck. Sunday afternoon the rest of my family arrived. Dinner at Alosi’s Bistro. We spend most of our dinners there and always get a warm greeting from the owner which is nice. The place is spotless, the customer service great and the food great as well. I highly recommend Alosi‘s.
Monday was another 10/10 beach day. The water was crystal clear, you could see everything. Saw rays, minnows, a huge school of fish that came right up to everyone and Dol phins right behind them, the closest I've personally ever been to them here. The water was about 74 and felt great. Waves were almost non existent so the body board made a great raft to hold onto and just float.
After dinner we headed up to the Boardwalk to ride the Great White. Tons of fun as always. The moon is about full and we enjoyed a beautiful sunset walk and I went back at night for some moon shots, the water was beautiful with the moon reflecting. I’ll post those when I get home as they are on my camera.
to be continued...
Very enjoyable report and great pics. I really appreciate the deep level of nostalgia held by you and other forum members. It is something of course that I hold as well. I think it is one thing that sets this forum apart from a
many others. It is so much more than just the superficial experience of simply going somewhere and having fun. It is much deeper. I love it.
Unexpectedly here again sooner than scheduled due to a problem on the home front I needed to escape, thank gods I didn't have to stay in some stupid business hotel up north. I need to come back to this post later for a full review (in process of switching motels today) but it looks like a lovely report and I wanted to say I'm glad to hear of continuing positive experience with the Pan American. I will be staying there for the first time a few weeks from now and hope to add it to the very short list of lodging establishments I know and trust. Of all the Moreys properties I have the feeling it is the most authentically Wildwood. It will have to do very well to justify the price tag, needless to say.
Nice report doowopper. Glad you had a nice time!
We are back home today. Thankful as ever for beautiful weather every single day and all the wonderful memories we have made to add to our collection from over the years. Originally the weather forecast was iffy for Tuesday and Wednesday but the Wildwood Weather Bubble held and we were treated to full hot sunshine and a gentle breeze off the ocean. My family is happily regimented in our routine of beach every day from 10am-3:30pm so Tuesday and Wednesday was much like Monday. Tuesday may have been the nicest ocean experience I have had in my life, even better than Monday which was hard to believe. I made a point to tell myself in the ocean that I may never experience a day this nice again in my life, it was that perfect. The Fudgy Wudgy kids are still in the Crest so Chipwhiches were enjoyed daily. We also got to see something I have never seen on the shore before, a flock of Pelicans heading up the beach. I don't think they are usually this far north but these were. Over the years we have gotten to know several of the staff at the Pan American and Alosi's, it's great seeing them year after year. Harry D the local legend of the Pan Am pool seems to be doing great as does Gig. My only regret is we didn't get a chance to play Fascination at Randy's new arcade.
This is a shot through my binoculars, it was so clear you could see the skyline of what I believe is Delaware towards the south.
The Port Royal is sporting some new flag paintings on the north facing side. It's hard to tell but they also painted the flat surfaces a very pale blue. You can see the new flags from real far away and I think it brings some nice life to the exterior. Nothing was done to the south side so it will be interesting to see if they do that next year. The Pan American received new stucco to the back, it's the same design motif but it's good to see money being put into the hotels.
These storage boxes popped up along the Crest beaches. I believe you can rent them to avoid dragging your stuff across the Sahara, probably used by locals. I thought the colors looked nice.
My favorite meal at Alosi's, Breaded Chicken Cutlet with Brown Gravy along with Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Sautéed Spinach. This is probably the only time I eat spinach all year.
My Room, #401. It's a basic King Hotel Room, I face the basketball court looking south and get a cool view down the motel district and great ocean views. I usually will hang out on the balcony at night until I'm literally falling asleep in the chair. Just something I've done since I was a kid.
A tradition we started a few years back, Mack's Pizza delivered to the hotel room for my Dad, Brother and I.
Tuesday Evening was gorgeous, walked down the beach almost to the Reges and back.
Expert frisbee catcher.
The only time the weather got iffy was Wednesday evening. For all the drama of these clouds nothing came to be until late at night close to midnight. Lots of cloud to ground strikes over the ocean in the distance but we made it back from the boardwalk before the rain came. I hung out on my parents balcony for a while (they are oceanfront) to people watch and then headed back to my balcony as they were all going to bed. It started to lightly rain and I moved off my balcony into the sliding doorway to stay dry when either our hotel or something within 100 feet got struck by a huge cloud to ground strike. Blinding white light and the loudest explosion I ever heard in my life. I love a good storm but that was scary as there was no other nearby lightening at the time. I was a little worried someone got hit on the Crest Pier as people were still moseying around. Everyone outside screamed and it was the talk of many people at the restaurant at breakfast the next morning.
Thursday Morning at check out another family is in front of me checking in early, a dad and his 3 young children all beaming with excitement. As sad as I was to see my vacation end it was nice seeing other people coming in to start theirs. God willing, we are all set again for next year.
awesome! seems like you're having a blast...looking forward to hearing about the rest of the trip.
Great TR. I noticed the water is unusually clear, which was a pleasant surprise. The new McDonald's looks nice- much better than the older cookie-cutter building it replaced. Too bad they didn't install a new sign because the existing one is so generic.
I really enjoyed the pictures! I know exactly what you mean when it comes to coming back and seeing an old friend, although, I call it coming back home. We've been staying in the same room for over a decade and the motel staff basically watched me grow up. Everywhere I look I remember all the memories from prior trips...being an family vacations with my parents, getting ready for my wedding at the table by the window, lugging the big Pampers box and having a designated dresser drawer for my son's diapers and wipes. It's amazing how fast time flys.
Nice trip report so far...looks like you're having fun. Your tags in the hotel room remind me of what we do in the Ghost Ship. We have a dime hidden in the ship that we check on every year. It has not moved from its hiding spot for over 5 years!
Great pics and report, I think McD's looks fine