We all know about the smoking ban that went into effect on all New Jersey beaches, but now, Gateway National Recreation Area at Sandy Hook has gone a step forward and banned alcohol. Citing more than 300 alcohol-related incidents over the last three years, the Chief Ranger has said this ban will keep Sandy Hook from becoming (or staying) a “party beach”.
While I have never personally witnessed any craziness, such a ban does not come with much-needed justification. People can be assholes, and when they spend the entire day roasting in the sun, throwing booze into the mix only makes it worse. However, such a crackdown does ruin the pleasures of drinking on the beach for those of us who do not run rampant with drunkenness. I am called to remember a moment after work a few years ago when my boss brought a cooler with some food and drinks, and made martinis for us beach-side. It was a relaxing, special moment. Last year, my friend Walter prepared a stir-fry meal for my family and I at one of the shelters. This too was an awesome time and although the alcohol was not necessary, it certainly helped.
Permits for alcohol consumption for parties can still be purchased, but for those who want to cap off a beautiful day at one of this state’s most glorious areas by cracking open a beer, that time has come to an end. One again, the stupidity of the few ruin it for the many.