SOUVENIRS OF THE SOUL | Blog | NJ Southern Shore

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Things that money can’t buy, but memories you’ll treasure forever!

Whether you have vacationed at one of our premiere ocean resorts before, or plan to, we have a list of things that we call souvenirs of the soul to help you visualize your summer plans.

With 63 days until Memorial Day, the Cape May County Department of Tourism would like to take you away from your current thoughts, if only for a few minutes, to visualize the sights and sounds of the ocean resorts located along the Atlantic Ocean, including Ocean City, Sea Isle City, Avalon, Stone Harbor, North Wildwood, Wildwood, Wildwood Crest, Cape May and Cape May Point.

Take a deep breath. What do you smell? The ocean? Bay breezes?

Close your eyes. What do you see? A beautiful sunset over the bay? Kids building sandcastles on one of our resort beaches?

Those, dear friends, are souvenirs of the soul – things that money can’t buy, but memories you’ll treasure forever.

And, the best part is, just about any sight, sound or smell will immediately call to mind these wonderful souvenirs, a lovely French word for a remembrance or memory.

What would a sweet memory of the Jersey Cape be like without the tasty, gooey confectionary treat found in countless confectionary shops? Can you hear the wrapper coming off the gelatinous sweet that is always on everyone’s souvenir list.

Honestly, what’s the first thing you think of when you hear a few bars of that classic beach tune Wildwood Days? Bet you smile... and for a moment pause to remember those summer evenings “down the shore.”

How about that ominous rhythmic beat from the soundtrack of Jaws? That always seems to prompt a bit of an adrenalin rush no matter how many times we hear it, especially if you’re watching that movie classic on the beach in Cape May.

Does the very thought of popcorn take you back to Johnson’s Popcorn along the Ocean City Boardwalk – or the Wildwood Boardwalk – trying to decide between Peanut Crunch or Chocolate Drizzle? Johnson’s has been making those souvenirs for the soul for over 75 years, longer than most of us have been around, hand mixing every batch in those iconic copper kettles, another wonderful memory.

And those banner planes, towing aerial billboards, with such a distinctive sound just as you are about to doze off under your umbrella. Sometimes it seems that the planes are close enough to touch as they slowly progress along the beachfront but there’s never a problem reading the message or jotting down a phone number.

When you pop open that beer at home, do you immediately remember that first sip last summer at one of our local breweries. Uncork a bottle of wine and what comes to mind? That sunny afternoon touring a local vineyard and then enjoying a glass – or two - over a romantic dinner in Cape May. Another wonderful souvenir of the soul.

Hop on a tram car and head for the pier as you listen to that voice admonishing everyone to “watch the tram car, please.” This icon of the Wildwood Boardwalk, Wildwood Sightseer Tramcar.

In your heart, you can sing along with The Drifters as they croon Under the Boardwalk, “about havin’ some fun, falling in love, down by the sea; on a blanket with my baby is where I’ll be.”