Monday, December 5, 2011

Wildwood 365 update and plans for the future

Many of our readers have asked why we have not updated the blog in several weeks. I hope that the following adequately answers that question.

But, before I even get into this, I would like to offer my most gracious thanks to all of those who have supported and continue to support Wildwood 365 (hard to believe we'll be celebrating our third anniversary next month!).

Though we have been inactive of late, we are looking forward to bigger and better things, in 2012 and beyond. This is an exciting time to be a fan of the Wildwoods, with so much going on and so many landmark projects set to get underway.

I sincerely hope that all of our friends are doing well, and would also like to offer each and everyone the very best, good health, and happiness this holiday season!


(Alright, *deep breath*  Here we go...)

For literally months, I had the date "Friday, December 2nd" circled on my calendar.

With growing anticipation, I was looking forward to piling into the car with my family and making the trip down to Wildwood (for those who don't know, I live and work in Philly) to take in the events of the island's Family Holiday Celebration.

I had never made it to the tree lighting ceremonies at the Hereford Lighthouse or the Convention Center, or experienced the annual Christmas parade. Visions of sugarplums at the shore were dancing through my head all through September and October, but the seasonal festivities weren't the only reason I was excited about last Friday.

After much planning and consideration in mapping out future plans for Wildwood 365, I had decided that morning would be an ideal time to announce our ideas for "expansion" in 2012. We have a new website on the way, as we feel our humble blog has outlived its practicality.

Our staff has some other ideas in store as well, including some interactive features that we are very excited about and can't wait to share with everyone.

Again, my original intention was to post about these things on Friday. Unfortunately, those plans began to change several weeks ago, due to what I can only describe as... well, something that has been a life-changing period of time for me.

Suffice to say, I never did make it down for the holiday celebration, either.

As some of our friends and readers know through our private conversations, I have been suffering from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD); this came on very suddenly, though, in retrospect, there were warning signs that I apparently chose to ignore. In recent weeks, it has become particularly gripping and, at times, all-consuming in effect. 

Every day of the past month has been a challenge, particularly due to the physical symptoms and bouts of depression that have manifested as a result of this ordeal. I hope that this doesn't come off as sounding overly-dramatic or too much of a downer. I simply feel that it's something I have to get out in the open.

Those who have dealt with this affliction and are helping me through (and you guys know who you are) have told me that I will emerge a better person for it. My perspective has already changed, as I've gained a new understanding for what those who battle emotional and mental disorders in their daily lives.

And, I swear - I SWEAR - I will never take my health and well being for granted again.

Lately, I've had some encouraging signs of improvement. A trip to Ocean City and Smithville on Saturday certainly raised my spirits, and Sunday was a good day at home. Today was a more difficult day, but I'm doing my best to focus on the positives while accepting that there will be inevitable "setbacks" along the way.

While I'm working toward getting better, two of my closest friends - my younger brother Dave Alven and my virtual older brother Mike Crater (Crazy About Wildwood) will be handling main posting duties here on the blog and on our Facebook page.

To them, and all of the others who have been helping me through this - especially my dear friends from the Doo Wop Preservation League Forum - I am deeply indebted.

And on that note - One additional discovery I've made during this time is that there is no shortage of basic human kindness in this world. Sometimes, it's very scary out there and the "unknowns" in life can be truly terrifying.

But, never underestimate the importance of a simple smile, a kind encouragement, or even a simply pat on the back.

... Alright, enough of the depressing stuff. Wildwood 365 WILL be back in full force, sooner than later, and we'll have a ton of new features and programs for 2012.

When we started this blog back in January 2009, it was for pure love of the Wildwoods and nothing else. The island is our collective passion and we look forward to continuing to share it with our friends and readers for years and years to come!


Also want to note two great new blogs that celebrate the Wildwoods that we highly recommend everyone check out (if you haven't already):

Watch The Tram Car Please is a terrific new site started this past summer by Bob Ingram and Tony Deutsch. The site hosts tons of features, and is highlighted by the incredibly colorful, insightful, and informative Boardwalk Blog.

Check it out daily for great updates, and also be sure to "Watch The Tramcar" on Facebook!

Another really cool blog was recently initiated by my friend Martin Melucci: Wildwood Motels - Yesterday, Today, Forever.

The site features profiles of Wildwood motels in tremendous detail, including many current and vintage photographs.

Please be sure to check out these great sites, and tell them that the gang from Wildwood 365 said hello!

We will be back. Soon. Be well and take care, everyone!

Al Alven
Wildwood 365


  1. Al,

    Thanks for the update. This site has been excellent from Day One, and I am sure will only get better with the new site to come.

    Thank you also for the reference to my Wildwood Motels - Yesterday, Today, Forever blog site. I've enjoyed putting these together, and have a new post in process that's taking a little time to complete. Much appreciated.

    Glad you're beginning to get well.