Business Notes

Head for the Surf & Sip Brew Trail Jan. 1

Craft Brew Tourism With Surf-Related Destinations
By MARIA SCANDALE | Nov 15, 2017
Courtesy of: Southern Ocean Made

Craft beer has a fervent following, and tourism promoters learned in Denver, Seattle and California that fans will follow a “brew trail.” Philadelphia has one, and soon, so will Southern Ocean County – with a surfing twist.

“The Southern Ocean Chamber (of Commerce) has established the first brew trail to draw the growing beverage tourism market to our area,” introduced Lori Pepenella, CEO at the chamber. “This trail is one of the first in the nation to be infused with non-drinking stops. In addition to the breweries that are featured, it includes other stops that reflect our surfing history and lifestyle.”

The trail will officially begin Jan. 1 at the Tuckerton Seaport. It will launch the celebration at the Seaport’s New Year’s Day Food Trucks and Fireworks fest, from noon to 6 p.m. The N.J. Surf Museum at the Seaport is one of the stops on the Surf & Sip Brew Trail.

The chamber unveiled the trail at its Nov. 8 breakfast meeting.

“Promoting the unique beach culture of the Long Beach Island region, the new trail will feature local craft breweries and surf lifestyle artisans,” said Pepenella in a press release to spread the word.

The trail is launching with three craft breweries: Manafirkin, Ship Bottom Brewery and Pinelands Brewery.

It also features South-End Surf N’ Paddle with board shaping and customization, as well as options to take part in a Stand Up Paddle tour or lesson. Ann Coen Gallery is listed for trail goers to view local surf-related photography and art; Jetty for surf design apparel; the Seaport for its Surf Museum and boat building and surfboard workshops; and the Southern Ocean Chamber Visitors Center for maps, at 265 West Ninth St. in Ship Bottom.

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Here’s How It Works

There’s an established app for this, and the Surf & Sip Brew Trail is on it. The Southern Ocean Chamber has partnered with Loyale App, which can be downloaded for both Android and iOS.

Loyale is a brewery-managed app that was developed on California’s Central Coast two years ago to help small, independent craft breweries grow a larger share of the overall beer market.

“Southern Ocean is now listed with enthusiasts from the East and West Coast, being the first trail in New Jersey to be included on the app,” Pepenella said.

Since the trail is connected with the chamber’s Southern Ocean Made program, one of the easiest ways to get started is to go to the website, where the free Loyale App can be downloaded from the link

Trail-goers can also grab a map at any of the above-listed trail locations.

Now, validate each stop by using the app or asking for your map to be stamped. (The trail is not a timed activity; take part at your leisure all year long.)

After visiting all locations, submit your app/map at the Southern Ocean Chamber Visitors Center to get a limited edition coozie and be entered into a grand prize drawing.

“All completed entries have the same chance to win as long as they are completed through the app or map and submitted to the Southern Ocean County Chamber Visitor Center before Thanksgiving 2018” (next year).

“This is not a crawl; this is an opportunity for enthusiasts 21 or older to experience our unique Jersey culture, get to meet local experts, try authentic products, and take part in the Long Beach Island Region like never before,” Pepenella said. “It is the purpose of the program to build loyalty for local brands and encourage visits through the year.”

As more background from a tourism promotion perspective, Southern Ocean Made is one of several new programs that align with the 2020 vision that began in honor of the chamber’s 100th anniversary in 2014. The Southern Ocean Made program is an accreditation for businesses that design or manufacture goods generating local employment and capturing the region’s unique style through products that can be shipped outside of the area. With the initial accredited businesses, the Southern Ocean chamber has established the first brew trail.

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