What Does Seaside Heights Think Of ‘Jersey Shore’ Ending? [POLL/AUDIO]
They became overnight sensations. They forever changed the letters GTL, DTF and altered the meaning of the word grenade forever. Of course, we're talking about Jersey Shore, the popular MTV reality show that took the world by storm beginning in 2009.
Like all other programs, they eventually come to an end. This one is on its way out and the town that served as the principal location is sad to see them go.
During production, Seaside Heights was jam-packed with the cast, crew and thousands of onlookers trying to catch a glimpse of Snooki, The Situation, Ronnie, Pauly-D, Vinny and the rest of the gang. In that time, the resort borough became internationally known. With the popularity increasing the exposure of the community and the new "talented" cast, problems also arose with a series of events ranging from crowd control issues to bar brawls and even arrests for disorderly conduct. There was also outrage from Italian groups for the use of the word "guido" and some of the stereotypes the show became known for.
However, there was lots of mixed emotions.
Some people loved the show while others were considered "haters." No matter where you stand, there is no doubt that the show did an amazing job at giving Seaside a lot of publicity - both good and bad - and may have contributed to the success of the tourism seasons during some of the worst economic troubles in the past fifty years.
Since the show began, Seaside Heights Administrator John Camera has been very vocal in his support of the show. He was one of the principal people in helping the Borough secure the necessary permits. Back in 2009, he was a guest on a Townsquare Media radio talk show on our shore stations. I interviewed him about the program on that show and he told us how exciting it is for the town. It's a feeling shared by other officials including Mayor Bill Akers, who has been quiet up till now.
In an exclusive interview with Akers last week, he tells Townsquare Media that "the show provided Seaside Heights with world-wide publicity that we could never afford to pay for with our budget. This show skyrocketed Seaside and gave a huge boost to the local businesses. After the show first went on, demand was high. There were no vacancies at hotels and motels, restaurants were full and people far and wide were calling to find out how they could stay in the home that J-Woww and Sammi Sweetheart share with the rest of the group. It was an amazing ride."
But what about the content? Where did Akers stand on that?
He says, "We weren't sure what the show was going to be like before they shot anything. We were a little surprised at first. It's not our place to regulate it. That's one of the reasons why Assemblyman Ron Dancer's Snookiville Law is not a great plan. It really isn't a one size fits all kind of thing. Each municipality should be able to regulate themselves and not have a blanket legislation."
Akers adds, "We were grateful that they came when they did. The borough, like many others around New Jersey, was facing hard times thanks to the troubled economy. The show helped to restore some of the faith and brought in tons of money for the local businesses."
Akers and other Borough officials feel the droves of tourists will keep coming back, even though the crew won't be dancing it up in the clubs or trying to spend more time in the "smush room."