Ocean City, New Jersey facts for kids

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Ocean City, New Jersey
City
City of Ocean City
Ocean City Music Pier
Ocean City Music Pier
Motto: "America's Greatest Family Resort"
Ocean City highlighted in Cape May County. Inset map: Cape May County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Ocean City highlighted in Cape May County. Inset map: Cape May County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Census Bureau map of Ocean City, New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Ocean City, New Jersey
Country  United States
State  New Jersey
County Cape May
Incorporated May 3, 1884 (as borough)
Reincorporated March 25, 1897 (as city)
Area
 • Total 10.797 sq mi (27.964 km2)
 • Land 6.333 sq mi (16.402 km2)
 • Water 4.464 sq mi (11.562 km2)  41.35%
Area rank 202nd of 566 in state
5th of 16 in county
Elevation 3 ft (0.9 m)
Population (2010 Census)
 • Total 11,701
 • Estimate (2015) 11,355
 • Rank 207th of 566 in state
4th of 16 in county
 • Density 1,847.7/sq mi (713.4/km2)
 • Density rank 300th of 566 in state
5th of 16 in county
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)
ZIP code 08226
Area code(s) 609 Exchanges: 391, 398, 399, 525, 814
FIPS code 3400954360
GNIS feature ID 0885332
Website www.ocnj.us
Rising sun Ocean City NJ
The sun rising over an Ocean City beach
Ferris Wheel on the Boardwalk Ocean City New Jersey 2014 DSCF0737
Ferris Wheel on the Boardwalk

Ocean City is a city in Cape May County, New Jersey, United States. It is the county's largest city by area and is the principal city of the Ocean City Metropolitan Statistical Area which encompasses all of Cape May County. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city's population was 11,701, reflecting a decline of 3,677 (-23.9%) from the 15,378 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn declined by 134 (-0.9%) from the 15,512 counted in the 1990 Census. In summer months, with an influx of tourists and second homeowners, there are estimated to be 115,000 to 130,000 within the city's borders.

Ocean City originated as a borough by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on May 3, 1884, from portions of Upper Township, based on results from a referendum on April 30, 1884, and was reincorporated as a borough on March 31, 1890. Ocean City was incorporated as a city, its current government form, on March 25, 1897. The city is named for its location on the Atlantic Ocean.

Known as a family-oriented seaside resort, Ocean City has prohibited the sale of alcoholic beverages within its limits since its founding in 1879, offering miles of guarded beaches, a boardwalk that stretches for 2.5 miles (4.0 km), and a downtown shopping and dining district.

The Travel Channel rated Ocean City as the Best Family Beach of 2005. It was ranked the third-best beach in New Jersey in the 2008 Top 10 Beaches Contest sponsored by the New Jersey Marine Sciences Consortium. In the 2009 Top 10 Beaches Contest, Ocean City ranked first.

From early June through Labor Day, Ocean City requires individuals age 12 and up to purchase a beach tag to access its beaches. For the 2015 season, a one-day pass cost $5, a weekly pass was $10, and a seasonal pass for the full summer season was $25 (though, if purchased before June 1, seasonal tags were $20.)

History

The island, a stretch of dunes and swamps running for seven miles, had been used by local Native Americans who were brought there by its abundance of fish during the summer months. Originally purchased by the Somers family, the island had once been named Peck's Beach, believed to have been given the name for a whaler named John Peck who had a camp on the island.

In 1700, whaler John Peck began using the barrier island as a storage place for freshly caught whales. Eventually known as Peck's Beach, the island had several purposes: it was an Indian summer fishing camp, cattle-grazing area, and sometimes mainlanders would boat over for a picnic or to hunt.

On September 10, 1879, four Methodist ministers, Ezra B. Lake, James Lake, S. Wesley Lake, and William Burrell, chose the island as a suitable spot to establish a Christian retreat and camp meeting on the order of Ocean Grove. They met under a tall cedar tree, which stands today in the lobby of the Ocean City Tabernacle. Having chosen the name "Ocean City", the founders incorporated the Ocean City Association, laid out street and lots for cottages, hotel and businesses. The Ocean City Tabernacle was built between Wesley and Asbury Avenues and between 5th and 6th Streets. Camp meetings were held by the following summer. As a result of its religious origins, the sale or public drinking of alcoholic beverages in Ocean City was prohibited.

The first bridge to the island was built in 1883, and the first railroad soon followed. The first school began in 1881. The boardwalk grew and was relocated several times. The ship Sindia joined other shipwrecks on the beach on December 15, 1901, on its way to New York City from Kobe, Japan, but has since sunk below the sand. A salvage attempt to retrieve treasures believed to have been on the ship was most recently launched in the 1970s, all of which have been unsuccessful. A large fire in 1927 changed the city significantly, causing $1.5 million in damage and leading the city to move the boardwalk closer to the ocean, which resulted in the greater potential for damage from saltwater.

Boardwalk

OceanCityNJ Boardwalk
Ocean City Boardwalk, looking south

The Ocean City boardwalk is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the resort. It is also one of the most well-known boardwalks in the world. long and runs north from 23rd Street to St. James Place, with mile markers for people who are exercising.

The boardwalk was first built in 1880 from the Second Street wharf to Fourth Street and West Avenue. In 1885, plans to extend the boardwalk along the entire beach were made as the city's first amusement house, a pavilion on the beach at 11th street called "The Excursion" opened. A second amusement park, the "I.G. Adams pavilion", at Ninth Street and the boardwalk, opened soon after but was destroyed by fire in 1893. Following a second catastrophic fire in 1927, the boardwalk and its businesses were rebuilt 300 feet (91 m) closer to the ocean on concrete pilings, with parking created for cars in the space where the buildings and boardwalk once stood. The Ocean City Music Pier partially opened one year later, with work completed in time for the 1929 season.

In 1965, the Wonderland Amusement Park opened on the boardwalk at 6th Street, which is now known as "Gillian's Wonderland Pier". Runaway Train, a steel twister, is the only major coaster that operates there. Playland's Castaway Cove, is located on the boardwalk at 10th Street. Two major roller coasters operated there, which were the Python, a looping coaster, and the Flitzer, a wild mouse coaster. A new major shuttle coaster at Castaway Cove, Storm, was planned to be finished in summer 2013. The two older coasters (Python and Flitzer) were removed and for the 2016 summer season, a new ride called "GaleForce" is under construction, which will be a high thrill roller coaster with three linear synchronous motor launches reaching speeds of 64 miles per hour (103 km/h) and a 125-foot (38 m) beyond vertical drop. The new "Wild Waves" ride will be a family-oriented coaster, with a height of 50 feet (15 m), that will wrap around the GaleForce coaster. The new "Whirlwind" ride is a figure eight kiddie coaster with spinning cars.

There is also a water park located on the boardwalk called "OC Waterpark", open during the summer months.

In 2007 controversy emerged about the city's proposed use of ipê, a type of wood, to re-deck parts of the boardwalk. Environmental activists protested against the city's use of the wood, but the plan went ahead.

Today, there are bike and surrey rentals available along many boardwalk cross streets, but bikes and surreys can only be ridden on the boardwalk before noon during the summer. Attractions along the boardwalk include two family amusement parks with rides and games, an arcade, the Music Pier, a water park and various themed miniature golf courses. The Ocean City boardwalk has a wide variety of dining options, from sit-down restaurants to funnel cake.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city had a total area of 10.797 square miles (27.964 km2), including 6.333 square miles (16.402 km2) of land and 4.464 square miles (11.562 km2) of water (41.35%).

Unincorporated communities, localities and place names located partially or completely within the city include Peck Beach.

Ocean City is a barrier island with bridge connections to the Marmora section of Upper Township by the 34th Street (Roosevelt Boulevard) Bridge, Egg Harbor Township by the Ocean City-Longport Bridge, Somers Point by the 9th Street Bridge (Route 52), and the Strathmere section of Upper Township by the Corson's Inlet Bridge. The eastern side of Ocean City borders the Atlantic Ocean.

Climate

Climate data for Ocean City, NJ
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 42
(5.6)
44
(6.7)
50
(10)
58
(14.4)
67
(19.4)
76
(24.4)
81
(27.2)
80
(26.7)
75
(23.9)
65
(18.3)
56
(13.3)
46
(7.8)
61.666
(16.4811)
Average low °F (°C) 29
(-1.7)
31
(-0.6)
37
(2.8)
46
(7.8)
55
(12.8)
64
(17.8)
70
(21.1)
70
(21.1)
64
(17.8)
53
(11.7)
43
(6.1)
34
(1.1)
49.666
(9.8144)
Source: <Weather.com >"Error: no |title= specified when using {{Cite web}}". Ocean City, NJ. Weather.com. 2016. https://weather.com/weather/monthly/l/USNJ0374. Retrieved 12 September 2016.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 452
1900 1,307 189.2%
1910 1,950 49.2%
1920 2,512 28.8%
1930 5,525 119.9%
1940 4,672 −15.4%
1950 6,040 29.3%
1960 7,618 26.1%
1970 10,575 38.8%
1980 13,949 31.9%
1990 15,512 11.2%
2000 15,378 −0.9%
2010 11,701 −23.9%
Est. 2015 11,355 −3.0%
Population sources:
1890-2000 1890-1920
1890 1890-1910 1910-1930
1930-1990 2000 2010

2010 Census

As of the census of 2010, there were 11,701 people, 5,890 households, and 3,086 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,847.7 per square mile (713.4/km2). There were 20,871 housing units at an average density of 3,295.7 per square mile (1,272.5/km2)*. The racial makeup of the city was 92.05% (10,771) White, 3.50% (410) Black or African American, 0.13% (15) Native American, 0.71% (83) Asian, 0.03% (3) Pacific Islander, 1.91% (224) from other races, and 1.67% (195) from two or more races. [[Hispanic (U.S. Census)|Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.50% (643) of the population.

There were 5,890 households out of which 14.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.6% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 47.6% were non-families. 42.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 21.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.98 and the average family size was 2.68.

In the city, the population was spread out with 14.4% under the age of 18, 6.4% from 18 to 24, 16.7% from 25 to 44, 32.9% from 45 to 64, and 29.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 53.6 years. For every 100 females there were 88.7 males. For every 100 females ages 18 and old there were 86.4 males.

The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $55,202 (with a margin of error of +/- $6,710) and the median family income was $79,196 (+/- $11,239). Males had a median income of $48,475 (+/- $5,919) versus $41,154 (+/- $12,032) for females. The per capita income for the city was $40,864 (+/- $3,899). About 5.1% of families and 6.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.3% of those under age 18 and 5.8% of those age 65 or over.

2000 Census

As of the 2000 United States Census there were 15,378 people, 7,464 households, and 4,008 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,222.8 people per square mile (858.0/km2). There were 20,298 housing units at an average density of 2,934.0 per square mile (1,132.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 93.57% White, 4.31% African American, 0.12% Native American, 0.56% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 0.52% from other races, and 0.86% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.99% of the population.

There were 7,464 households out of which 16.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.9% were married couples living together, 9.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.3% were non-families. 40.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.02 and the average family size was 2.71.

In the city, the population was spread out with 16.4% under age 18, 5.6% from 18 to 24, 23.8% from 25 to 44, 28.3% from 45 to 64, and 25.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 48 years. For every 100 females there were 86.4 males. For every 100 women age 18 and over, there were 82.8 men.

The median income for a household in the city was $44,158, and the median income for a family was $61,731. Males had a median income of $42,224 versus $31,282 for females. The per capita income for the city was $33,217. About 4.3% of families and 6.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.0% of those under age 18 and 6.5% of those age 65 or over.

Transportation

Roads and highways

As of May 2010, the city had a total of 126.07 miles (202.89 km) of roadways, of which 114.85 miles (184.83 km) were maintained by the municipality, 9.31 miles (14.98 km) by Cape May County and 1.91 miles (3.07 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.

Public transportation

NJ Transit provides bus service to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan on the 319 route and to Atlantic City on the 507 and 509 routes.

Historic places

  • The Flanders Hotel
  • Ocean City 34th Street Station (demolished)
  • Ocean City City Hall
  • Ocean City Residential Historic District
  • Ocean City Tenth Street Station

Locale

Preceded by
Longport
Beaches of New Jersey
Succeeded by
Strathmere

Images for kids


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