Toms River Reopens Ortley Beach Amid Coronavirus Crisis

Tom Davis

TOMS RIVER – Ortley Beach in Toms River will reopen to the public starting Saturday.

The township will continue to enforce strict social distancing guidelines on its beaches. Beach access parking lots will also be open. The boardwalk and bathrooms will remain closed, officials said.

“We felt it was time to open our beaches for recreational purposes,” said Mayor Maurice B. Hill. “Beaches are open for walkers, runners, those who are exercising without sitting or sunbathing.

"Swimming is prohibited. These restrictions are subject to change as we get more guidance from the state.”

The beach can be accessed at these entrances:

  • 2nd Ave
  • 3rd Ave Parking lot
  • 4th Ave (ADA accessible)
  • 5th Ave
  • 7th Ave
  • 8th Ave
  • Fielder Ave (ADA accessible)
  • Fort Ave
  • Harding Ave

Ortley Beach will be manned by lifeguards on Memorial Day weekend and weekends of June 6-7, June 13-14 and fulltime commencing on June 20th. At this time, the township is following state guidelines and CDC recommendations including social distancing and recommending face masks, officials said.

In addition, beach badges will be on sale starting May 18th at the Recreation Administration Office, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The preseason reduced price will be extended until June 19th.

Full season beach badges are $35 at the pre-season rate and $50 after June 19th. Senior beach IDs can be obtained for a one-time fee of $15 and are good for lifetime (must show proof of age).

Kayak storage permits for Ortley Beach and Money Island will also be on sale May 18th at the Recreation Department.

The ban on short-term rentals will also be lifted on May 22. Executive Order 108 currently allows municipalities to restrict short term rentals.

Toms River OEM issued a Proclamation, on March 31st, that restricted short term rentals until further notice. Many other municipalities enacted additional restrictions. Toms River Article VI, Chapter 335 prohibiting short term rentals is rescinded effective Friday, May 22, 2020 to allow our island residents to plan summer rentals.

Renters are encouraged to bring their own facial coverings, and rental landlords are asked to follow CDC guidelines on cleaning rental units between renters.

Township inspectors continue to practice guidelines provided by the CDC and are wearing face masks and gloves to protect themselves and our residents and visitors. They are dispatched directly from home, allowing them to complete more inspections daily. Inspectors are utilizing iPads to perform inspections which allows an inspection report to be electronically sent, providing the resident with immediate information.

“We are definitely keeping an eye on public safety and continue to encourage social distancing. We will continue to monitor the beaches and capacity. Public health will lead to economic health,” said Council President Maria Maruca.

This article originally appeared on the Toms River Patch