Nightlife makes a return to the Jersey Shore

Source: NJ News

Nightlife is on the rebound at the Shore.

In Seaside Heights last Friday, authorities lifted a post-storm curfew and fists pumped past 10 p.m. in the beach town for the first time since Hurricane Sandy swept through.

Hemingway's Cafe is back in all its strobe-lit glory and will host a Winter Wonderland party tonight featuring a snow machine, an ice flume and Grey Goose "vodka girls."

"Everybody wants to rebuild the Shore and we're right there with it," said Peter Aliseo, general manager of Hemingway's. "It's been emotional because we're seeing familiar faces and so many people are displaced. We want to be raising spirits in these trying times."

The Key West-themed complex reopened last weekend, drawing hundreds of clubgoers who danced until 2 a.m.

Meghan Ryan, a trauma nurse whose Ortley Beach home was destroyed by Sandy, got dressed up in a summery animal print outfit to unwind at Hemingway's on Saturday.

"It's nice, even for a couple of hours, to have fun," Ryan said. "We're having a hard time around here. It's like 'The Wizard of Oz' hit us. It's not going to be the same in Ortley, but I think Seaside Heights might get back to normal and it's good to get back into a weekend routine."

As barrier island nightspots reopen, they're providing respite for residents. The owners of the establishments, meanwhile, are eager to complete repairs so they can welcome back regulars and, eventually, summer visitors.

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