In Economic Development

Congratulations to all who competed, voted, and was awarded in the largest post season event to take place in on Long Beach Island.

Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce would like to thank all who supported the 31st Annual Chowderfest weekend that took place October 5 & 6 2019. With perfect fall chowder weather, high energy restaurants, enthusiastic crowds and passionate volunteers; the cook off event brought together 13,506 in attendance. Chowderfest was created to extend the local economy and promote tourism past the traditional Labor Day Weekend. The Sunday October 6 Cook Off was a tremendous success for the entire region. Though it is a home grown event, it reached across the country bringing people in from states such as California, Connecticut, Colorado, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Georgia, Florida, Virginia, Michigan, Maryland, Massachusetts and Maine. Major cities such as San Diego, Savannah, Houston, New York, Washington DC,and Philadelphia were also represented in the crowds that spent the day tasting chowder and enjoying the festival experience. New Jersey attendees held a home court advantage with 306 out of 565 municipalities represented; continuing to make LBI a culinary hub and the Chowder Capital of NJ. Thank you to all, who traveled near or far who chose to make Chowderfest part of their weekend.

At the award ceremony hosted by Dan Turi from the Beasley Media Group, Todd Elsasser, the event coordinator and the Chowderfest Committee recognized the tremendous effort presented of red, white and creative chowders were served during the event. Along with co-chairs Jillian Elsasser and Christopher Schwab, the 2019 awards were presented to:
New England:
Grand Champion: The Chicken Or The Egg
2nd Place: Hotel LBI
3rd Place: Kubel’s Too
Manhattan:
Grand Champion: Lefty’s Tavern
2nd Place: Shore Fire Grille, – win dedicated to the Memory of Timothy Kohlheim
3rd Place: Bistro 14 LBI
Creative Seafood:
Grand Champion: Country Kettle Chowda
2nd Place: La Bamba Mexican Restaurant
3rd Place: Parker’s Garage & Oyster Saloon

Rookie of the Year: Hotel LBI
Best Shore Motiff: Country Kettle Chowda
Most Enthusiastic: Lefty’s Tavern
Most Creative Booth: La Bamba Mexican Restaurant

A special thank you to all the hard working restaurants that pleased and fed crowds throughout the day Kubel’s Too, Chicken or the Egg, Hotel LBI, Ocean County College Hospitality Program with Booth Design from Stockton University , Bread & Brine, Lefty’s Tavern, Mainland Kitchen & Pub , CLUCK N CRABS, Shore Fire Grille, Bistro 14, Black Whale Bar & Fishhouse, Country Kettle Chowda, La Bamba, The WooHoo, and Cuisine on the Green at Atlantis, Parker’s Garage & Oyster Saloon. These fantastic establishments prepared, cooked and served over 2880 gallons of Manhattan, New England and Creative Soup.

The Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce would like to thank 2019 Presenting sponsors include Sysco, Barefoot Wines, TD Bank, The Sandpaper/Beachcomber, Bud Light, Ritchie and Page, Westminster Bakers Co. VIP Sponsor: Barlow GMC Stage Sponsor Manahawkin Kia, DiFeo’s Jeep Chrysler Ram Dodge Voting Tent Sponsor: AtlantiCare, North & South Gate Sponsor The Wireless Experience and Fantasy Island Amusement Park, Now Serving Sponsor Hackensack Merdian Health Southern Ocean Medical Center and Health Village Imaging; Supporting Sponsors Atlantic States Group, Panzone’s, G Anderson Agency, Anderson Insurance Agency, Beasley Media Group, Ocean County Board of Freeholders and NJ Division of Travel and Tourism. Chowderfest Photo Station provided by Island Party Station, and Home Depot . Additional support provided by Buccaneer Motel, Potts Excavating Inc, Sally’s Seafood, The Borough of Beach Haven, Southwicks Marina, Beach Haven Police, Fire & First Aid Squad, Thundering Surf and Murphy’s Market, Chowderfest Committee, Chamber Staff and Volunteers. A sincere thank you to all the Merchant Mart vendors, all first responders especially Great Bay EMS, Barnegat Light First Aid Squad and Stafford Volunteer Fire Company and their Mascot Sparky for being part of the family activities on Saturday. The chamber also thanks the fantastic band line up, the Star Spangled Banner sang by Hadley Magaziner from the Tide Table Group and the outstanding children’s entertainment. Thank you to the 17 Chowder Caddie Contest Competitors and congratulations to our winner the Beisel Family of Exeter Pennsylvania. Net proceeds of this event fund ongoing business programs, operate the region’s year round visitor, support local projects, assist with grant funding and destination marketing campaigns throughout the year.

The Chowderfest Committee has already begun plans for an spectacular 32nd Chowderfest Weekend taking place on October 3 & 4 2020. For more information on how to get involved in the regional chamber’s efforts of building the local economy and accredited destination marketing efforts please contact them at 609 494 7211, www.visitLBIregion.com, or stop into their Visitor Center at 265 W Ninth Street in Ship Bottom. Stay connected with Chowderfest all year on Facebook @theofficialLBIChowderfest or on www.chowderfest.com