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Demolition of Joey Harrison's Surf Club in Ortley Beach Begins

Crews in the middle of demolition project at nightclub destroyed by Superstorm Sandy

A crew from T. Fire Demolition prepares to demolish what is left of Joey Harrison's Surf Club in Ortley Beach, June 3, 2014. (Photo: Daniel Nee)
A crew from T. Fire Demolition prepares to demolish what is left of Joey Harrison's Surf Club in Ortley Beach, June 3, 2014. (Photo: Daniel Nee)
Joey Harrison's Surf Club, one of the largest oceanfront businesses to have been damaged by Superstorm Sandy, is finally coming down.

Crews from T. Fiore Demolition have been working at the site, picking apart pieces of the wreckage left behind by the Oct. 2012 storm.

The famed nightclub and restaurant, located on the oceanfront near Sixth Avenue in Toms River's Ortley Beach section, has been left relatively untouched since Sandy struck the New Jersey coast 19 months ago. The building was literally torn in half by the storm, the waves from which battered the building, exposing what was left of the structure to the elements. Even as the building was being torn apart by an excavator on Tuesday afternoon, a shot wheel – a small remnant of good times had over decades of summers – remained.

Some surfers, in recent months, have complained to the township council that high-tide waves were reaching the structure and carrying debris back into the ocean.

In April, the club's owner, Joey Barcellona, Jr., told Toms River Patch that the building was supposed to have come down last August, but an ongoing dispute with Fiore prevented the demolition from moving forward. The dispute eventually culminated in a lawsuit.

Barcellona did not respond to a phone call or an e-mail from Toms River Patch seeking comment on the details of the demolition and the status of plans to rebuild.

In April, Barcellona said his family intends to rebuild the nightclub, which has been a staple in Ortley Beach since it opened in 1973.
Andrew June 04, 2014 at 01:04 PM
As an owner and resident of Ortley Beach that was affected by Hurricane Sandy, I say it's about time that all structures damaged from the storm are torn down. I fully understand the hardships that many, including myself, have endured since the storm, but 19 months is long enough. Some homes look as if the storm happened yesterday...there's really no excuse for that. Take for instance the home at 401 Tunney Ave next to the Ice Palace. The home is wide open with trash and debris strewn about the yard and counts ferel cats and rats as its only residents. This home poses a danger to young children and the environment as a whole. What makes matters even worse is that the owner of this home also owns the Ice Palace which is currently being renovated. Apparently they have the money for that, but not enough respect for the other residents of the block who've done their part to repair or tear down. It's time to move on from the ghosts of the storm and get back to life. Lets start by cleaning up the abandoned homes.
Av June 04, 2014 at 04:35 PM
Oh yeah bring on hair gel and roid rage, Joey ravioli and purple iroc.
Av June 04, 2014 at 07:31 PM
Overrated Benny toilet
kimberlee b June 05, 2014 at 07:03 AM
Wish I lived on the side of the bridge so I could enjoy it more when it reopens.

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