BELMAR, NJ — Take 15 pizzas, 240 cupcakes and a dozen or so activities, mixed with about 150 children at the beach, and you have the ingredients for an evening of hometown fun at Belmar’s Taylor Pavilion.

The borough’s Fourth Annual Children’s Ball was held June 22, at the newly opened beachfront facility, where youngsters gathered for the fun-filled event under the setting sun. While the specially decorated banquet space was set up for dining and playtime for the younger children, the beach directly off the pavilion’s rear deck was turned into a mini-playground with plenty of room to play soccer or cornhole, or for just having a good time with friends.

Inside, borough employees and volunteers were more than happy to hand out slices of pizza, donated by Federico’s, and mini-cupcakes, courtesy of Sweet! — both Belmar-based businesses.

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And the girl responsible for giving Mayor Matthew Doherty the idea for starting such an event for children was there as well — his 12-year-old daughter, Hannah.

“One year, my wife and I were getting ready for the annual Mayor’s Ball and my daughter asked why she couldn’t go,” he said. “And I thought, why not have something for kids.”

The following year, the first Children’s Ball was held — the evening before the annual Mayor’s Ball — representing the beginning of what is quickly becoming a popular tradition.

The Sixth Annual Mayor’s Ball will be held tonight, June 23, at the Taylor Pavilion. The sold-out event will be held from 6 to 10 p.m., culminating with a bonfire on the beach.


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