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Spreading the Stoke since 2006

A Look at a Grassroots Company on a Mission

Our colorful history is the story of how a group of surfers came together to improve their local surf culture. We hope you enjoy this glimpse into the slow growth of a Jersey Shore institution.

Hurricanes: Swell for NJ


a person standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera

  • Camper Contests make their debut on Saturdays throughout the summer. Froth levels are high and the friendly competition is fun for campers and specators
  • Halfway through the summer, Summertime finds a new home for S.U.P. at the Manasquan River Narrows, and it’s gorgeous! Every change is an opportunity to grow.
  • Former grom team member, and instructor Logan Kamen makes history by winning 2 divisions at the ESA Championships in pumping OBX surf
  • After a year hiatus, the crew heads back to the Outer Banks scores again!

Groms Take Over


a man and a woman taking a selfie in a mirror

  • Former Campers like Dylon, Mikey, Keaton, Dan J, Eric, & more come into their own proving that homegrown instructors are the best instructors!
  • S.U.P. Kids Camp is gaining popularity, Summertime is making waves on the Shark River
  • B Tighe(s) the knot with Kerry O! The two met working at Ortley Surf Camp

Smooth Operations



  • The Website gets an overhaul, now the online home of stoke is almost on par with the beachfront home of stoke
  • Mobile operations chart new territory in Sea Bright, Monmouth Beach Club, and the SL Bath & Tennis Club
  • S.U.P. outreach visits Summit, NJ
  • Local shaper, Johnny Roz comes on board with the Summertime Team
  • Third successful staff retreat to the Outer Banks scores the best waves…ever

Best Summer of Waves Ever


a person standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera

  • Mark Gilmartin joins forces with SUMMERTIME as an owner, creating a trilogy of stoke
  • Surf Camp format expands to offer morning and afternoon sessions, groms everywhere rejoice
  • S.U.P. Kid’s Camp gains popularity in Belmar, week 5 sees 15 campers
  • Tyler, Shaun, and Charlie take the boy’s grom team back to NYSEA Surf Week in Long Island. Grom team graduate and assistant coach, Cooper Fortney takes out the field with his second NYSEA surfing title. “We are the champions” blasts on the bus ride home.
  • Uncle Andrew and Kelly are married under the SUMMERTIME Tent in Belmar. The two met working as camp counselors in 2011

Summer After Sandy


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  • Summer After Sandy Essay Contest awards scholarships to local kids affected by the Superstorm
  • SUMMERTIME Stoke Stock @ Algonquin Theater in Manasquan premiers John John’s movie DONE & Hollywood blockbuster, Chasing Mavericks. T Shirts, hats, and giveaways abound
  • Brendan Tighe and the Ortley crew relocates the surf camp to Point Pleasant Beach. Local pride at all time high
  • Jess Kwiecienski wins Nationals in June, Easterns in September, Surfing America Prime in April, and NSSA East Coast Championship in March. Jess has set the bar pretty high for future SUMMERTIME graduates to say the least!
  • Kid’s S.U.P. camp gets off the ground on the Shark River, led by Marilyn G
  • TEAMS format surf contest series begins with great local participation
  • The SUMMERTIME Office gets a new router and “board room” ping pong table and an oversized whiteboard for oversized logistics and dreams. Our original laser printer holds strong.

Mother Nature Reminds Us Who's The Boss


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  • Pete Bush announces how awesome Ortley Beach is almost daily on the PA… SUMMERTIME Surf and our Toms River campers couldn’t agree more.
  • Superstorm Sandy changes New Jersey forever. SUMMERTIME family and friends band together to try to recover from the devastation. This ‘Act of God’ significantly impacted our lives, but the SUMMERTIME directors looked for the positivity wherever possible. The best thing that happened during the storm was that I created 2 new inlets in Ocean County. Unfortunately, instead of allowing the Barnegat Bay to breathe, and creating 4 new epic surf spots while alleviating summer traffic flow on Rt. 35, haste to “Restore the Shore” misses a huge opportunity. New Jersey claims that it is “stronger than the storm” and blocks the natural inlets by making the road “exactly how it used to be”
  • Boy’s Grom Team Wins in Long Beach lead by Cooper Fortney’s 1st place performance
  • SUMMERTIME is invited to expand programming in Asbury to include a kids camp by then mayor, Ed Johnson.
  • Green Shirts are adopted as the team uniform, and Yellow Umbrellas pop up to shade the boardwalk staff
  • S.U.P. instructor Marilyn Gargiulo takes 1st place in the Endless S.U.P. race 6 mile ocean race

Local Leaders



  • Belmar’s favorite son, pro surfer Brendan Buckley joins up with SUMMERTIME, coaching the advanced boy’s grom team and offering the kind of insights only “Joe Buckley’s kid” can
  • SUMMERTIME partners with Lightly Salted Surf Mercado to bring professional surf lessons to Asbury Park
  • Ortley Beach Surf Camp hits it’s stride during year two.
  • Fine Artist and friend of SUMMERTIME, Erik Fawcett, gives the company a professional facelift with new logo and creative designs
  • Mid season, SUMMERTIME migrates from the Surf Taco closet to an office with windows, but we are still just a short walk away for the burritos.

Paddling Our Own Raft


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  • Ortley location is formed in the spring, STS operates a 2 week pilot program.
  • SUMMERTIME crew dominates the great ocean Raft Race in Avon by a long shot (despite failing to register and being doubly DQ’d for paddling across the Shark River Inlet from Belmar)
  • What does a growing surf school need? AC+Wifi and Burritos. Surf Taco Belmar incubates us in a spare closet with no windows… but close access to burritos.

Expanding the Mission


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  • Gil returns home to NJ to partner with Shaun to expand the STS mission to include character development.
  • Partner with the Borough of Bradley Beach to operate our second full service location.
  • August 9th- “First Fest” is born, String Bean makes an appearance.
  • Ben Wilkinson, Hurricane Bill and Andy Irons visit the Jersey Shore; it is still undecided who displaced more water and inspired more groms.

Continued Improvement


a person standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera

  • The STS Team continues to grow…BTighte, Wrenna, Jack, Teicher, Zack and more join the staff. Tyler, Skyler and Alejandro become resident groms.
  • Cmac steps up as Beach Marshall, giving Shaun his first day off
  • SUMMERTIME introduces S.U.P. lessons – the first to teach paddle in our area.
  • The GROM TEAM is formed with Cooper, Keaton, Brad, Drew, Chris, Mikey, Poncho, Tanner, Dylon. You can see most of them on our staff page today.

We're Back!


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  • Word-of-mouth has gotten out about the surf camp in Belmar. Kids are raving about the great experiences they are having at SUMMERTIME surf school.
  • The staff more than doubles, returning coworkers Carly, Alex, and Shaun are joined by local surfers Nick Nap, Todd, Pat, Jello, Mark, Katie, Chris, Sindia, Cmac and JD and the SUMMERTIME crew starts to gel.
  • Year 2 sees many returning campers and a few new stars like Jess, Drew, Brad, Poncho, Dan J, Keaton, and Dennis.
  • Gil is hired as the Waterfront and Groups Services Coordinator at YMCA Camp Surf in San Diego- one of the only oceanfront resident camps in the country.
  • Superstar Nicole Labruto adds a logical touch to our administrative operations and things begin to get a bit more professional behind the scenes.

Year One


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  • The flattest and rainiest winter in 40 years on the North Shore of Oahu allows Shaun plenty of time to put his college education to work, writing a plan for Summertimesurf, llc. Friendships with future partners are solidified in the muddy mess of Hawaiian monsoon when Gil visits Hawaii after graduating early from Rutgers, and Mark starts freshman year at Hawaii Pacific University.
  • Mayor Ken Pringle, Brian McGovern, and Margaret Plummer help a 22 year old surfer named Shaun establish a surf camp in the borough of Belmar. It is the first of its kind in the state.
  • May- Shaun officially forms Summertime Surf in New Jersey.
  • Marissa DiNapoli registers as camper #1. Cooper, Chris, Mikey, Tanner, Brendan, Dylon, Nikki and many others enjoy our inaugural season of stoke.
  • A pop up tent and a van full of softies set up shop day after day on at Belmar’s 3rd Ave Beach. Kid’s are loving it, parents are signing up, and Belmar’s first Surf Camp is a success.
  • Meanwhile, Gil works as a program manager at the BSA National High Adventure Sea Base in the Florida Keys.
  • Yes… we know this picture is blurry… it was taken in 2006 when Megapixels weren’t so easy to come by!


B.S. (Before Summertime)


  • Shaun spends summers lifeguarding and teaching surf lessons through Eastern Lines in Belmar and 3rd Ave. Surf Shop in Spring Lake.
  • Gil spends summers lifeguarding in Mantoloking and running youth trips to a deserted island in the Florida Keys.
  • Mark spends summers living the life of a Belmar grom, caddying, lifeguarding, and working at Eastern Lines.
  • Shaun transfers to Bond University on the Gold Coast of Australia. This proves to be an instrumental move for the future of SUMMERTIME. At Bond, Shaun connects with future SUMMERTIME players like Chris, Jon, Gil, Mark, Erik, Pat, Cmac, Duke, Greg, April, Nicole, Jess, Wade, Jessup, Alex, and Maxwell.