Teens Being Shooed Off Jersey Shore Beaches


Many kids want to be down the shore with their friends to get away from home, especially during Memorial Day Weekend, but not when they’re getting restricted from having fun.  

There is a crackdown on teenagers at the Jersey shore as law officials in Ocean City aim to resolve the bad behavior on the beaches and boardwalk. Ocean City Mayor, Jay Gilligan, has stated there has been many incidents over Memorial Day weekend involving underage drinking, vandalism, assaults, shoplifting, use of weapons and others resulting in 999 total incidents this Memorial Day. 

Teens are typically allowed on the beach without parental supervision but with police supervising, which allows the teens to stay and hangout. The teenagers are definitely monitored, due to there being 62 cops on the boardwalk at Ocean City. The monitored area kept the serious violations on the boardwalk to decrease. People say the strategy of letting them stay on the beach rather than kicking them off to the boardwalk is working. Having the rowdy teenagers stay on the beach is better than having them on the boardwalk, disrupting and annoying people.

Because of these incidents, Gilligan shut down parties and made it clear that beaches will be closed at 8PM and carrying backpacks on the beach and boardwalk will be permitted after 8PM as well. Boardwalk restrooms will be closed at 10PM. The new beach curfew is said to be effective to people of all ages as well as the backpack ban. 

Hearing this, let’s talk to a student here at Wayne Hills who has visited Ocean City, New Jersey. Wayne Hills High School student, Mia Bacchioni said, “I went to Ocean City last year with my family and me and my friends had a fun time on the beach. We didn’t get kicked off nor did we do anything bad.” 

Hearing this is making us realize how things change over the years. Last year, teens getting kicked off the beach was rare and the drinking, vandalizing and shoplifting was not as much of a problem as it is this year.

A teacher here at Wayne Hills happens to go to Ocean City a lot for his vacations so let’s hear from him. Mr. Fleissner says, “I’m not generally in favor for hard curfews but historically the beaches in the morning are covered in beer bottles and empty cans, so I understand the attempt to keep things cleaner and safer.”

Teens even from Wayne Hills don’t agree with this new law but it seems like teachers and adults do. Besides Ocean City, Jersey shores like Wildwood and Seaside even have signs placed everywhere, saying alcohol is permitted from being brought on any of the city’s beaches/boardwalks; however, bars and restaurants are exempt. 

So how does it feel to be a teen breaking the laws and gaining these consequences for it? Obviously no one wants this to keep going on and wants to be able to have fun with their friends down the Jersey shore, but because of the sudden and frequent unauthorized things that teens have been doing, many individuals under the age of 18 feel exasperated.