Montego Bay Belmar NJ, reunion Party at The Headliner
The world knows all about “Jersey Shore” club culture, thanks to the MTV show.
But where did the Shore guido club culture start? Folks attending the Montego Bay Cocktail Lounge & Hotel reunion Friday, Sept. 16 at the Headliner, Route 35 south, Neptune, have an idea.
“Club culture reinvented itself at the Jersey Shore (at Montego Bay),” said DJ Freddie Palumbo.
The club, located on Fourth and Ocean avenues in Belmar, brought a high-energy, post-disco dance music vibe to the Shore club scene. The formula attracted local club goers as well as fans from North Jersey and New York.
“Logistics played a big part in it,” Palumbo said, “People from up north, the guidos, came down to the Jersey Shore and it was a natural right there on the beach. You could come into the nightclub right off the beach.”
Still, the hair and the arms were big, no matter what time of day it was. Since then, the Shore club scene has been filled with T-shirts and jeans – and dance music, too.
The club was open from 1981 to ’87, when it closed after Belmar instituted a midnight closing time, effectively tapping down the borough’s nightlife. Co-owner and general manager Gordon M. Long cited the midnight closing time as the reason the club was sold in reports at the time. Condominiums stand on the site now.
But the culture that Montego Bay helped to popularize lives on. The Montego Bay reunion will feature DJs Tony Monte and Palumbo, a slide-show montage, and the classic dance music of the ’80s.
Admission is $5.
“The response we’ve been getting for this has been staggering,” Palumbo said.