Last night as the sunset, we said “see you later” to Avalon, New Jersey and headed back to NYC for three days of work.
It is hard to describe the joy we experienced this weekend as 11 people crammed into a small, bay facing shore house in Avalon for 48-hours. You know those weekends that you just want to enjoy as long as possible, hoping that it won’t come to an end? That was this weekend. Even though the air conditioning didn’t exactly work and there was only one bathroom, the laughter was constant, the dock served as a second living room and a jump into the ocean waves or off the dock was the perfect way to cool down. In fact, I don’t think any of us would change a thing about the weekend. It was so wonderful to create new memories with the group. Here is a hilarious picture from 1996 that the cousins (Bo, Meg, Sarah and Katie) recreated last night before we drove back to NYC.
Many shore rentals, including ours, are Saturday to Saturday, which means that we didn’t leave for the shore until bright and early Saturday morning. We left Brooklyn at 6 AM with hopes of being in Avalon by 9, allowing us to enjoy a full beach day. Our plan worked perfectly and we were exploring the area on two wheels, with iced coffee in hand, by 9:30.
Since the rest of the group wouldn’t arrive until Saturday afternoon, we spent Saturday squeezing in a few activities. Bo and I took a surfing lesson together before meeting Russell and Meg at Primo Hoagies for huge, delicious hoagies. Their special, fresh bread was delicious and exactly the way I like it – crispy on the outside and chewy inside.
After lunch we spent the afternoon relaxing on the beach, body surfing through the waves and taking an afternoon beach nap before hopping on our bikes in search of a cool treat. Opened in 1957, Avalon Freeze was Meg and Bo’s favorite dessert spot growing up and I now understand the obsession. This chocolate chip cookie cone was filled with soft vanilla ice cream then dipped in rainbow jimmies (sprinkles) and peanut butter crunchies.
We spent the rest of Saturday catching up with everyone, jumping off the dock and enjoying a late dinner. Bo’s mom brought a batch of her famous sauce and paired it with fresh shrimp, sausage, pasta, garlic bread and italian salads for our first meal together. After the day of fresh air and a dockside beers, our group was fast asleep by 10pm.
Bo and I kicked off Sunday with a long run which allowed him to give me a tour of Avalon and Stone Harbor. Unfortunately the sightseeing combined with an uneven sidewalk resulted in a pretty nasty spill across the sidewalk and pebbles during mile 2. It looked worse than it felt and we were able to continue through our run until reaching our finish line – the beach!
After our run, I spent the rest of the day relaxing on the dock. When I wasn’t reading, I was hanging doing cannon balls off the dock, stand up paddle boarding and laughing as we used tubes and boogie boards as makeshift floats. We headed back inside every hour to enjoy a brief break from the sun and follow the British Open golf tournament which ended up being far more exciting than anyone imagined!
Late in the afternoon we took one last bicycle tour of the island together, heading to Stone Harbor to explore and visit some favorite spots. We played video games and skeet ball at the arcade, treated ourselves to local fudge, and explored the shops before riding back home for a final dinner with everyone and heading back to New York City. Luckily, I only have to make it through three busy work days in Cincinnati before Bo and I get to head back to Avalon for a long weekend with his cousin and parents.
Avalon and Stone Harbor Recommendations: