Start your weekend by saluting our nation’s fallen heroes at the opening ceremonies to the NJ Run for the Fallen beginning Thursday the 26th at 6:30 pm. A Flag Ceremony along with a twenty-one gun salute will take place at Sunset Beach in West Cape May to honor the memory of those killed in action. At 8 am the following morning, the Run will officially commence at Cape May Lighthouse at will conclude at approximately 4:30 pm in Ocean City. Day two of the run resumes September 28th at 6:30 am in Somers Point and finishes at 6:30 pm in Toms River. Day three begins in Bricktown at 6:30 am and concludes at 4:30 pm with a ceremony at the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial in Holmdel. A team of active military service personnel carrying flags will run keeping military pace of 8 minutes per mile as they complete this 172+ mile to honor every service member killed in Operation Iraq Freedom and Enduring Freedom. For more info or to donate, visit www.njrunforthefallen.org.
Beginning Friday evening in Wildwood, the Annual Olde Time Italian Festival promises great food, fun games, and continuous live entertainment that is sure to make guests shout, “That’s amore!”. Hosted by the Wildwood Sons of Italy, this event will take place in Fox Park, located at Burk and Atlantic Avenues across from the Wildwoods Convention Center. Take in the traditional smells and tastes of an Italian market, plus Italian-made goods, crafts and merchandise as vendors of all kinds fill Fox Park, including those selling Italian dishes like pastas, sausage and peppers, chicken cutlets, clams & spaghetti, tiramisu, cannolis and more. The festivities continue until midnight on Friday and persist Saturday throughout the day.
Get your strut on beginning at 8 am on Saturday the 28th on the Cape May Promenade. The Cape May County Dog Obedience Training Club is proud to present the 7th Annual Mutt Strut to celebrate the end of the dog days of summer! Owners can strut with their dogs anytime between 8 am and noon, for a requested donation of $1 per leg ($2 per person, $4 per dog). Registration is required for dogs to be permitted on the Promenade and is held near Convention Hall on Beach Avenue near Gurney Street. Plus, walkers support a worthwhile cause, with half the event’s proceeds used to purchase K-9 protective vests for the Cape May County Sheriff’s K-9 Unit.
Over on Cape May Harbor that same morning, the Cape May Dragon Boat Festival kicks off at 9 am. There will be 42 teams this year, made up of friends, family, co-workers, clubs, schools, bus drivers, community groups, local businesses, non-profits, and people who just want to have fun. Each team is comprised of 21 paddlers who race head to head in 41 foot long dragon boats over a 200 meter course. Come cheer your favorite team onto the finish line! Not only will there be breathtaking races, but also a flower ceremony, Karate performance by Kum Sung School of Martial Arts, a beer garden, food court, and retail vendors that are sure to make lasting impressions on both racers and spectators.
Cape May Court House will also be home to an exciting festival Saturday morning and afternoon. Hosted by the Courthouse Convalescent Center, the Harvest Festival begins at 9 am and will feature a number of unique autumn items from an array of vendors.
On Saturday evening, the Southern Shore Chapter of the American Red Cross will host a fundraising event at Ocean Galleries of Avalon. The fundraiser reception will take place from 5:30 to 8 pm and will feature special guest Mayor Martin Pagliughi. In addition to a radio-thon hosted by Chris Nagle of Avalon’s WIBBAGE 94.3 FM, the highlight of the fundraiser will be the auctioning of a Hurricane Sandy tribute painting by the 11-year-old child prodigy, Autumn de Forest. In conjunction with her exhibition at Ocean Galleries this summer, Autumn unveiled a giant, 8’ x 30’ replica of the commemorative artwork at Morey’s Piers & Beachfront Waterparks in Wildwood, NJ in the new artBOX, a first-of-its-kind boardwalk artist colony made from repurposed shipping containers. Autumn explained the message behind the “Sandy Flag” artwork as representing the states of New Jersey and New York coming together to overcome the storm. The live auction of “Sandy Flag” will take place at 7 pm.
What better way to close the weekend than with an irresistible batch of Morey’s Piers Curley Fries? Join Morey’s this Sunday beginning at 11 am on Mariner’s Landing Pier for their Super Sunday Celebration and the first ever Curley Fry Dipping Contest. Guests can purchase an unlimited ride wristband for only $25 and kids can enjoy free face painting, strolling entertainment, pumpkin decorating and more. Be sure cast your vote for your favorite Curley dipping sauce creation. The five Facebook finalists will compete for $500 and a year’s supply of Curley Fries!