- Cape May NJ Travel Guide and Vacation Planner Blog

Month: June 2014

Cape May hosts the inaugural Cape May Seafood Festival

Last Saturday marked the inaugural Cape May Seafood Festival, a celebration Cape May’s commercial and recreational fishing industry. It was sponsored by the City of Cape May and Cape May Forum. Visitors to the festival enjoyed live entertainment, free education programs, cooking demonstrations, and locally caught seafood.

You can find out more about the event on the official website

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Cape May’s boutique store trend

Last year, if you’d asked me to describe the type of shops we have in Cape May, I would’ve said they’re largely geared toward our summer visitors: t-shirt shops, souvenir shops with “Cape May” emblazoned on knick-knacks, the quintessential surf shops.

But last summer, the 500 block of the Washington Street Mall welcomed Galvanic, a shop specializing in men’s clothing, accessories, and unique home decor. We haven’t had a dedicated men’s clothing store in years, not since Barry’s closed (where Fralinger’s is now). Galvanic took over the space previously occupied by Gifts Galore and gave it a complete renovation. They gutted down to studs and painted the exterior a bold, charcoal gray.

Some people objected to the new look, but I was pleasantly surprised the first time I walked in. The inside is gorgeous: rough-hewn wood walls, sparse decor, handcrafted furniture. The store isn’t geared specifically to tourists, and it’s not geared specifically to locals. It’s just a great store, with interesting merchandise sourced from around the world. I ended up back there for my holiday shopping, infinitely preferable to trekking to the Hamilton Mall in May’s Landing.


Left to right: Red Oak Trading, Galvanic, Sea Bags

Since Galvanic came onto the scene, two more stores have opened on the mall that point in a similar direction: Red Oak Trading, sister to Good Scents, took over Wave One’s space on the 300 block this spring. Like its big sis, the store is eclectic, offering a curated selection of women’s clothing, accessories, home decor, and a scattering of books. A large number of products are made in the USA, and the shopkeeper can tell you about every one of them. Sea Bags just opened down Liberty Way, carrying nautical-themed totes made in Maine of recycled sail cloth. Ours is their third retail location, after Portland and Seaport, Maine. I walked past their window for a week before I broke down and bought their octopus tote.

These new faces follow a trend that has been emerging over the past few years: boutique shops with sophisticated, upscale merchandise. They join the ranks alongside existing stores including Across the Way, Pink, West End Gallery, Miss Demeanor, White, and Splash.

Do these newcomers foreshadow the type of shops we’re likely to see in Cape May going forward? Time will tell. But I can say, definitively, that I’ll be doing the bulk of my holiday shopping in Cape May this year.

What do you think of these new stores? What type of shops do you want to see in Cape May?

Mad Batter founder Harry Kulkowitz at the 70th anniversary of D-Day

“Think of Harry Kulkowitz, the Jewish son of Russian immigrants, who fudged his age at enlistment so he could join his friends in the fight. Don’t worry, Harry, the statute of limitations has expired. Harry came ashore at Utah Beach on D-Day. And now that he’s come back, we said he could have anything he wants for lunch today—he helped liberate this coast, after all. But this humble hero said a hamburger would do fine. And what’s more American than that?”

President Obama

Read the full transcript



Photos courtesy of Mark Kulkowitz

Instagram of the week: eastcotelane

Thank you @westendgarage! I had a great time doing the paint demo today! and I’m so flattered to see my pieces in your beautiful window! What a wonderful welcome! Thank you! Let’s do it again next Tuesday! #lovecapemay #livingthedream

Tag your photos #lovecapemay and tell us your Cape May story. Follow us @lovecapemay

Escape the Cape Triathlon

I’m not an athlete. I played tennis for three years in high school, but the idea of swimming from the Ferry to shore, biking for a few miles, then running a couple kilometers to the finish line sends a frisson of fear through me. Not to mention it all starts with a 10-foot jump off of the Ferry to get started. (I’m afraid of heights.)

Last Sunday marked the second annual Escape the Cape Triathlon, a USAT Sanctioned Event created by DelMo Sports. It took place at the Cape May-Lewes Ferry Terminal in North Cape May. The event is actually three separate races that take place simultaneously. There’s a Sprint Triathlon, a mere .35 mile swim, 10-mile bike ride, and 5k run. The International Triathlon is more challenging, with a full one-mile swim, 20-mile bike ride, and 5-mile run. The International Aquabike consists of a one-mile swim and a 20-mile bike ride–I’m exhausted just typing this.

Over 1,500 athletes competed this past weekend, with thousands of spectators lined up to cheer them on. Kudos go out to all of of the participants! Get more information about the event and how to participate next year on their official website.




Photos courtesy of AquaWolf Productions

Who’s New, Who’s Moved, Who’s Gone 2014


Every year, we round up the changes in Cape May that we’ve seen since last summer, including new businesses that have opened up, familiar names that have closed, and businesses that have changed location. This year, we’re adding renovations into the mix. Is something missing from our list? Let us know and we’ll add it!


  • Wave One is gone & replaced by Red Oak (Good Scent’s sister store) on the 300 block of the Washington Street Mall
  • Sea Bags replaced Down by the Sea Shops down Liberty Way
  • El Paso Groceries is open in Liberty Way
  • Cotton Company has taken over the Klothes Kove on the 500 block of the Washington Street Mall
  • CM Peanut Butter Co is open (and fantastic) on Carpenter’s Lane
  • Unanchored opened in the Beach Theater complex
  • Pink House Boutique opening on 2nd floor of the Pink House
  • Artists’ co-op moved out of West End Garage and onto Sunset Boulevard
  • The Linen Outlet downsized and moved to a smaller location on Park Avenue
  • Amelia’s Garden in West Cape May is gone
  • 7-11 is closed
  • Manzoni Realty closed its doors end of April


  • Linda Lee no longer operating as a B&B
  • The Bedford Inn is temporarily closed due to a fire
  • It’s rumored that the Summer Cottage is now a private rental


  • Martini Beach has reopened as M’Ocean, serving Pacific Coastal cuisine
  • The Gazebo Bar replaces the Finn Bar at Marquis de Lafayette
  • Jackson Mountain has been renamed Delaney’s, an Irish Pub
  • Peter Shields Inn is buying The Pilot House; closing is scheduled for June. The Pilot House American Bar & Grille will be open this summer with a brand new food and drink menu. Full renovations are scheduled for January.
  • Beach House restaurant (formerly Henry’s on the Beach) is now Angelo’s
  • The Pier opens at the Lobster House for private events
  • Cappelletti’s Deli is open on West Perry Street
  • Seaside Cheese moved into the old Linen Outlet on Park Avenue
  • Empanada Mamas has a location on Park Avenue
  • Ellie’s Bakery moved into Seaside Cheese
  • The Laudemans (of the Lobster House) bought Mayer’s and Captain’s Cove
  • The Merion Inn, which was temporarily closed, is scheduled to re-open in June
  • (Added June 17) Sapore Italiano is opening where the Smokehouse was last year – the former Daniel’s on Broadway

Sprucing up

  • The new brick project is finally finished on Carpenter’s Lane
  • Colors got a new paint job!
  • So did we
  • Jackson Street got refinished
  • Bank Street’s former Wawa is still undergoing renovations to become Homestead Real Estate
  • The wood mall benches are now wrapped in stone
  • The building that houses Henry’s Jewelers was renovated front to back and expanded
  • Island Grill has rebranded itself as a farm-to-table restaurant
  • Peter Shields Inn has redecorated guest rooms by the designer from White

If you know of other changes in town, leave a comment below or Tweet us! We’ll add it to the list.