As summer nears, time for some spring cleaning
Memorial Day weekend at the Jersey Shore means traffic on the southbound Garden State Parkway and Route 47 will be packed Friday, and those same folks will be heading the other way Monday.
It means beaches will be packed with folks determined to get a headstart on that summer tan, regardless of the temperature. The Ocean City and Wildwood boardwalks will be crowded with visitors. Every neighborhood will have yard sales on lawns and driveways.
Here’s my version of a yard sale. It’s a collection of opinions, thoughts and views that have been piling up in my mind and my laptop over the last few months.
Everything must go.
Kudos to Coach John Bancheri and the Stockton University women’s crew program.
Stockton President Harvey Kesselman, wife Lynne Kesselman and Ospreys Executive Director of Athletics Kevin McHugh launched a campaign about a year ago to turn the program into a national contender.
Under Bancheri’s guidance, the Ospreys’ women’s varsity eight won a bronze medal at the prestigious Dad Vail Regatta in Philadelphia this month. They also ranked 20th in the country overall among NCAA Division III programs. The bronze was Stockton’s first medal at the Dad Vail since a women’s pair boat earned a silver in 1998.
The Ospreys were able to tap into the deep pool of talent among local high school programs.
Five members of the varsity eight — Emily Culmone (Absecon/Ocean City), Chloe Schulze (Little Egg Harbor Township/Pinelands Regional), Julia Iannelli (Ventnor, Atlantic City), Marie Carney (Linwood/ Mainland Regional) and Lily Ludgate (Somers Point/ Mainland) — and coxswain Kaitlyn Bradley (Mays Landing/Oakcrest) were from local high schools and there’s no reason to think the pipeline can’t continue.
The Atlantic City Blackjacks are off to a bit of a slow start in terms of attendance at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall.
They drew a combined 10,193 for their first two home games, including an announced crowd of 4,054 in Saturday’s 48-41 victory over the Baltimore Brigade that left them tied for second place.
I’m hoping more fans will give it a chance. The team is competitive, the ticket prices are reasonable and the atmosphere is electric.
The Blackjacks have a big game coming up this Saturday against the unbeaten Albany Empire. Do me a favor and support them. They deserve it.
Last weekend’s Preakness gave me an idea.
Although War of Will won the race, Bodexpress won the hearts of the fans.
After tossing jockey John Velazquez soon after the starting gates opened, the horse proceeded to run the entire race solo, then even embarked on a victory lap of sorts afterward.
Since there’s no Triple Crown possible at the Belmont Stakes, I’d love to see every horse run without a jockey. At the very least, it would give people a reason to watch an otherwise meaningless race.
Congrats to Chris Long on his decision to retire after 11 NFL seasons.
Long was only with the Eagles for two seasons, but he quickly became among their most popular players in recent seasons.
He donated his entire 2017 salary in support of various charities and teamed with Lane Johnson to don underdog masks during the Eagles’ magical Super Bowl run.
Last season, he conducted a shrine in his locker at the NovaCare Complex in support of quarterback Nick Foles, who had taken over again for injured Carson Wentz.
Long became the second former Eagle to retire this offseason. Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata also ended his career, which he did after climbing Mount Kilimanjaro with Long’s “Waterboys” charity.
Running back Darren Sproles has yet to announce his plans.
Lastly, I’d like to thank everyone for the overwhelming response concerning Sunday’s column about the signs of getting old.
For you, here are a few more hints about my age.
I’m cutting my lawn with a blade mower old. I was about 12 when dad bought his first gas mower ... and proceeded to run over his big toe.
I’m hearing a kid trudging through sand at the beach shouting “Philaaaadelphia Bulletinnn!” while carrying papers in a satchel old.
I’m writing letters to my girlfriend and calling her collect once every two weeks from my dorm room phone at Appalachian State while she was at Glassboro State (she still refuses to call it Rowan) old.
David Weinberg’s Extra Points column appears Wednesdays and Sundays in The Press.