Surflight’s Grand Reopening Set for Friday at 8 p.m.

Show Place Ice Cream Parlour Will Open This Week Too
Jun 20, 2017
Courtesy of: Surflight Theater Surflight Theatre and Show Place Ice Cream Parlour are excited to welcome Miss Ocean County Olivia Suarez to their Grand Reopening on June 23. Suarez recently represented Ocean County at the Miss New Jersey Pageant and will be attending the opening of ‘Footloose’ as well as Show Place.

The big night is finally here!

After being shuttered for more than two years since declaring bankruptcy, Beach Haven’s Surflight Theatre will reopen this Friday, June 23 at 8 p.m. under the leadership of new owner Al Parinello, the New York producer of the current iteration of “The Fantasticks,” and returning producing artistic director Steve Steiner.

The new leadership team’s first effort will be “Footloose,” the 1998 Broadway musical based on the 1984 film of the same name. The show, a story of youthful rebellion and family, is best known for its hit songs such as “Holding Out for a Hero,” “Almost Paradise,” “Let’s Hear It for the Boy” and, of course, its title track.

The high-energy, dance-filled musical is a perfect pick with which to introduce the public to its young resident cast, especially since it plays to the strengths of director/choreographer Karen Babcock Brassea. “Footloose” is also timely in the sense that it is basically a Red State/Blue State allegory.

Chicago teenager Ren McCormack loves to dance. But when his father abandons him and his mother, they have to move to the small town of Bomont to live with an aunt and uncle. Bomont’s state is never identified, but considering one of the show’s main supporting characters is a cowboy and considering a conservative minister basically rules the town, it can be assumed Bomont is firmly in the Fly Over Nation countryside. In fact, Bomont is so conservative that dancing is banned!

The show’s uplifting music should fit the joyful mood of the evening. Expect a full house and a wildly enthusiastic audience if Parinello and Steiner take the stage. Also expect to see some celebrities – Miss Ocean County Olivia Suarez, who recently competed and was a finalist in the Miss New Jersey Pageant, will attend the grand reopening of not only Surflight but the adjacent Show Place Ice Cream Parlour and it is rumored that the newly crowned Miss New Jersey, Kaitlyn Schoeffel of Egg Harbor Township, will also put in an appearance.

That’s right, Show Place, with its famous singing and dancing waitstaff, will formally reopen on Friday night as well. But there will be “sneak peek” seatings from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday, June 21 and 22. You may be asked to sing as part of the show, but you’re not allowed to “sing for your supper.”

In the event you’re not lucky enough to score tickets for Surflight’s reopening you’ll still have plenty of chances to see “Footloose.” The show will be performed on June 24, 27, 28, 29 and 30 and on July 1, 5, 6, 7 and 8 at 8 p.m. and on June 25 and 27 and July 2 at 2 p.m. Tickets, which are $39 for adults and $29 for children 12 years of age and younger, are available online at, at the theater’s box office or by phone at 609-492-9477.

One last note: Surflight’s children’s theater season will open on Wednesday, June 28 with a performance of “Cinderella.” The show will be repeated on June 29 and 30 and July 1 and 2. The curtain for all shows is 6 p.m. and all general admission tickets are $12. A character meet and great will follow each performance. Tickets are available online, at the box office or by phone.

— Rick Mellerup


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