New Jersey’s beach-volleyball
scene is more competitive
than it looks, with leagues
and teams of various skill
levels commandeering many
of the Shore’s permanent
nets. Still, day-trippers of all
ages can usually find a pickup
game at most beaches. Ava
Daley, a 15-year-old from
Madison, discovered as much
when she joined three fellow
teens last July for a casual
match on the beach in Ocean
City. “None of us really knew
how to play, like how you do
the scoring and whatever,”
said Daley post-game. Her
tips for the novice: “Wear
sunglasses so you can see
where the ball is going.” Also,
protect your feet. “The sand
gets really hot, so if you dig
your feet down into the sand
a little, it’s cooler.” Other essentials: sunscreen (reapplied
plenty of liquid refreshment
and a bathing suit you can
trust not to fall o;.—TLG
Protect Your Skin
You’d like to come home with a tan, but be smart
about it. “Avoid sun as much as possible during
peak hours, between 10 ;; and 4 ;;,” says Dr.
Cheryl Fialko;, a dermatologist and New Jersey
Monthly Top Doctor from Liberty Corner. But if
sunbathe you must, use a sunscreen of SPF 30 or
higher, broad spectrum and water-resistant. Apply
a half hour before going outside, and reapply every
two hours, immediately after getting out of the
water and when engaging in activity with heavy
perspiration, Fialko; says. When using spray
sunscreen, rub it in to ensure even coverage. Sun-protective hats and clothing and beach umbrellas
are essential.—Jacqueline Klecak
Signal A Lifeguard
Splashing, yelling and waving your arms may seem like the natural response to an
ocean emergency. The truth is, “waving your hands in the air is not going to happen if you’re in distress,” says Steve Stocks, chief of the Wildwood Beach Patrol.
Luckily, the guards are trained to recognize the signs of a struggling swimmer.
These include di;culty getting arms or head out of the water and hair caught
in the eyes, says Stocks. “When you go in the water, take the time to go directly
in front of the lifeguards,” suggests Stocks. “If you find yourself in trouble, the
worst thing you can do is panic. This leads to exhaustion, and more often than
not, exhaustion leads to distress and drowning.” Try to float on your back, fill
your cheeks with air, breathe and remain calm. “The lifeguards recognize that
you’re in need of help and will get to you within a minute or so,” Stocks says. Use
the lifeguards as a resource; ask them about dangerous drop-o;s and rip currents, which account for 80 percent of rescues at Wildwood. But, Stocks adds,
“minimize that interaction so they can get back to scanning the water.”—JK
Win at Mini-golf
A round of miniature golf is a carefree way to
fritter away a chunk of time at the Shore. At
Blackbeard’s Cave in Bayville, bridges and caves
ratchet up the intensity for the 10-and-over set;
Castaway Cove in Point Pleasant Beach o;ers
two courses, one with caves and waterfalls, the
other with aerial views. Wildwood’s Island Miniature Golf doesn’t have much in the way of special
e;ects. Still, there are holes where “everybody
loses their ball,” says owner Stephanie Bennett.
Sofia and Oliver Corona, 5-year-old twins from
Brooklyn, felt plenty challenged by the 19 holes
they navigated with the help of their parents,
Amy and Louis. In the end, Sofia, wearing a “We
all dream of ice cream” T-shirt, felt she had
mastered her miniature putter. “Hit the ball soft a
lot of times and it will go in,” she said. Her brother
had a secret technique. “I know how to win,” he
said, “but I’m not going to tell you.”
—Tammy La Gorce
Eat a Lobster
Intimidated by all the cracking, poking and
picking required to eat a whole lobster?
Trust us: It’s easy. Just follow these steps:
1. Tie on the bib and cover your lap with napkins.
2. Over the discard bowl, grab the lobster’s body
in one hand and tail in the other. Snap upward,
breaking the lobster in two. Dump any water from
the shells into the bowl.
3. Pinch the flared tip of the tail and snap upward, creating a narrow opening. Insert your fork
into the hole and push the tail meat through the
wide end of the shell. Dip in melted butter. Enjoy.
4. Twist the claws o; the body. Crack o; the
“thumb” of each claw and poke out the meat.
5. Using a nutcracker, crack the large part of
each claw at the widest point. Break the shells in
half and extract the claw meat with your fingers.
6. Twist and detach the four knuckle segments
(careful, the edges are jagged). Break open each
with the nutcracker. More meat!
7. Snap o; the legs and suck out strands of meat.
8. Feeling adventurous? Try the green paste
inside the body cavity, called the tomalley, which
is the salty liver. Spread it on bread or eat plain.
Female lobsters can have orange eggs—also
Note that lobsters with hard shells are di;cult to
crack and densely packed with firm meat. Soft-shell lobsters have recently shed their hard shells
for the tender, new shell growing underneath.
You can break these open with your hands, but
they are messier and filled with more water. Some
say the extra water marinates and tenderizes the
meat. Since soft shells are not as dense, the cost
is less per pound.—JB
A golfer provides body English to a
crucial shot at Island
Miniature Golf in Wildwood.