Some residents of South Seaside Park have long felt they are the forgotten ones in this oceanfront section of the township, far removed from the mainland.
Mayor Carmen F. Amato is hoping to change that.
He and Township Council President James J. Byrnes are heading over the Mathis Bridge early this evening to 3C's Luncheonette at 1001 SW Central Avenue in Seaside Park. They will hold an "open house" from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
"Residents should have access to their public officials," Amato said. "That's what I'm trying to accomplish."
Amato met with some South Seaside Park residents back in the spring and promised them he would hold an open house event by later summer or early fall.
The Thursday night event is more informal than the "Town Hall" event Amato has already held.
"Open House" type meetings are for residents to show up and talk with me on issues they may have or just an opportunity to say hello and meet me for the first time as their new mayor," he said.
"Town Hall" style meetings - which Amato held at the Berkeley branch of the Ocean County Library - are more formal. He updated residents about major issues. Police Chief Karin T. DiMichele, Tax Assessor Eric L. Zanetti and Code Enforcement Officer Kenneth Anderson spoke about their roles and also gave updates.
Starting next year, Amato said he will ask Township Council members to have one meeting each quarter at different locations. The first will be in Holiday City, followed by meetings in South Seaside Park and Silver Ridge Park.
Beverages and light refreshments - paid for by Amato and Byrnes - will be served at Thursday night's "Open House."