Story by George W. Forman

At long last, Memorial Day weekend has arrived, and for most of us, it means the kickoff to the summer season.   For those of us at WOBM, it means you’ll be seeing more of us along with the Hometown Crew out and about in Ocean County, and our Friday broadcasts from Seaside Park.  Whether you are a permanent resident or come down for vacations, I think everyone has their own personal event or occasion that for them says “Now, it’s summer.”  It might be your first trip to the boardwalk or beach, or a favorite street festival or car cruise.  Maybe, if you’re lucky enough, it’s when you open your pool or a summer home for the first time.  Or, after all the prep work, you can finally get your boat in the water.  Thankfully, I can say “been there, done that” on some of those.

One of my favorite signs of summer was when I was around 11 or 12 years old.  Back then, my father was in a Barbershop chorus in Iselin, and on the weekend after Memorial Day, we would come down to Asbury Park for the Northern Division contest in Convention Hall, of what is now called the Barbershop Harmony Society.  In other words, the original “Pitch Perfect” type contest.  It was a full day seeing and hearing choruses and quartets from as far north as Montclair, and south to the Oceanaires from Toms River.  People on the boardwalk got to see the choruses pose for pictures after their performances in their colorful uniforms.  And back then Asbury still had rides and games, so it would be one of the first visits to the boardwalk during the summer months.

Things have certainly changed since then.  The contests are no longer in Asbury, but they do take place at the same time (if you’re interested, it’s next weekend in Cherry Hill), and there are other events that mean that summer is here for me.   Do you have a place or an event that’s special for you that gets you in the summertime frame of mind?

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