BELMAR, NJ — Belmar wants to get out of the beach chair and umbrella rental business.

After running the beachfront concession for three seasons, the borough is seeking bids to have the operation taken over by an outside vendor under a “point-of-service” model, similar to how it’s now done in nearby Asbury Park, said Belmar Borough Administrator Colleen Connolly.

It would entail establishing four rental hubs at the beach’s main entrances — Fourth, Eighth, 12th and 16th Avenues — where chairs and umbrellas would be available to rent. From there, concession employees would escort beachgoers to their preferred spots and provide any set-up service. At the end of each beach day, the outside vendor would be responsible to collect all the items and provide its own security of the items.

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Currently, the operation has been run from one location on the “brute force, love and energy of the kids who ran it,” Connolly told the Belmar Council at a recent meeting.

However, by running chairs and umbrellas from that centralized spot on a high-volume beachfront like in Belmar — where there are 21 total beaches by street block — the operation becomes overextended, she said, explaining the need for more rental locations along the 1.3-mile beachfront.

“This would be a more professional operation,” Connolly said. “All we would do is approve their sites, products and give them some storage space.”

The bidding, which starts at $2,500 for the five-year lease agreement, is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, February 20 at the Belmar Municipal Building, 601 Main Street. Click here to view the public notice on the New Jersey Press Association website.

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