Monday, February 15, 2010

A "Phoenix" on Pacific Avenue?

"Progress" has not been kind to the ever-dwindling nightclub scene on Pacific Avenue, in downtown Wildwood. Once one of the most happening areas of the island, with thriving bars and clubs dominating the strip, the atmosphere more closely resembles a ghost town today.

The past several years have seen many longtime institutions disappear. The famous "Block That Rocks," former home to the Penalty Box and Playpen (and more recently Wildwood Nights, Hill 16, and H2O) was demolished last month.

At the former location of Club Shakers (perhaps better known to longtime party-goers as the Oasis) sits the skeleton frame of a proposed three-tiered entertainment complex; construction ended three summers ago, and no activity has taken place since.

M.T. Bottle is abandoned, and The City - which only opened a few year back - suddenly shut its doors last summer.

The future of the district is in serious question, but there is some cause for hope. Victor Pettacio, owner of the Fairview Cafe, is planning on re-opening the club this Spring (it closed after the 2005 season).

According to an article by Joe Hart in today's Cape May County Herald, Pettacio has high hopes not just for his business endeavor, but for the Pacific Ave. strip, in general.

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