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May 15, 2019

Up, Up and Away at Pier Village’s Weekend Kite Festival 

By Joanne Colella

Long Branch pier village kite festival nj

All eyes were on the skies during the weekend of April 13 and 14 in Long Branch, as crowds filled the beach and boardwalk at Pier Village for the Fourth Annual Kites at the Pier Festival, presented by Sky Festival Productions and sponsored by Pier Village, The Journal, 94.3 The Point and 105.7 The Hawk.

Long Branch pier village kite festival

Enormous, colorful kite creations danced in the breeze as spectators marveled at the sight of a flying dinosaur, horse, octopus, seahorse, unicorn, shark, stingray and other fantastic designs. Amateur kite fliers were invited to join in the fun by bringing their own kite or purchasing one onsite, to be flown in a separate area. Down in the sand, there were rows of bright wind feathers, aninflatable train, bubble making and more.

Long Branch pier village kite festival 2

In Festival Plaza, across from the boardwalk pavilion, vendors offered crafts, merchandise and services alongside bouncy houses and slides for kids. Throughout Pier Village, shops and restaurants were busy selling their wares and serving up food both days.

It is worth nothing that although the early morning rain on Saturday and the clouds on Sunday did nothing to interfere with the weekend events and the crowd that turned out, there was, sadly, an unexpected cloud that hung, quite literally, over Pier Village on Saturday. Those approaching the festival undoubtedly noticed what looked like smog, fog or perhaps sand or construction dust drifting through the air and creating a haze.

long branch new jersey sign

What many did not realize at the time was that there was a massive fire burning just 8 miles south in Ocean Grove. The blaze completely destroyed large a building on the boardwalk that housed popular shops and restaurants, and the smoke was seen for miles up and down the shore.