Operation Beachhead experienced a new adventure on Saturday, August 15 2015. We “took control” and "established beachhead” for the first Charlie Butler Memorial “Storm the Wildwood Surf” in Wildwood, NJ. Charlie Butler was a veteran of the US Marine Corp and served two tours of duty in Vietnam. He served in the same platoon as Operation Beachhead founder, Michael Ricci. Charlie Butler’s wife, Sis, (Cecelia) joined us on the beach and greeted many of the volunteers and participants.
When the Operation Beachhead Team arrived on the boardwalk, members from The Byron Pennington Croker American Legion Post #184 greeted us and helped transport team members and the equipment to the beach via legion golf carts. What a treat! Every Operation Beachhead beach event begins early with set up of tents, tables and chairs. However on this day, when many of the Operation Beachhead Team arrived on the beach much of this work was already taken care of by the volunteers from the legion, volunteers of the Kona Sports & Surf and Ocean Outfitters surf shops, and members of Greater Wildwood Convention and Tourism Bureau. The Tourism Bureau also provided us with tables and beach chairs set up with umbrellas for shade.
Volunteers of the Kona Sports & Surf and Ocean Outfitters surf shops of Wildwood joined the Operation Beachhead Team. Not only did the volunteers help with surf instruction, the shops also provided equipment, thus eliminating the need for Operation Beachhead to transfer our equipment to Wildwood from our base in Sea Girt. The Wildwood Beach Patrol provided all day support, beach wheelchairs and staff. They also provided kayaks, which many of the participants took advantage of for the first time. Another big hit was the paddleboard, which several beach-goers tried out. The North Wildwood and Wildwood Crest Beach Patrols provided additional beach wheelchairs and personnel, as they were needed.
When the beach portion of the event concluded, the Wildwood Beach Patrol, Wildwood Police, and the American Legion members took down all the equipment and moved it from the beach.
While all the activity was going on at the beach, the Ladies Auxiliary of the Legion Post #184 were back at the hall preparing lunch for when we arrived. The hall was set up for us and the ladies were ready to serve the delicious food; warm pretzels, cold cuts, rolls, homemade potato salad, homemade macaroni salad, hot dogs, and homemade meatballs. Yummy. A perfect end to a perfect day.
We wish to thank:
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Founded in 2011, Operation Beachhead is a 501c/3 non-profit organization based at the Jersey Shore.
-- P0 Box 333 Manasquan, NJ 08736