N.J. Officials Briefly Close Popular Boardwalk, Citing ‘Civil Unrest’

The City of Wildwood, N.J., briefly closed its boardwalk late Sunday, citing “civil unrest” at the bustling beachside attraction during the busy Memorial Day weekend but offering few details about what prompted the decision.

Declaring a state of emergency, the city closed the boardwalk after midnight, the police said. But by 6 a.m. Monday, the order had been lifted.

The Police Department in Wildwood, in a resort area on a barrier island in the southernmost part of New Jersey, announced in a social media post on Sunday night that the “civil unrest” had created “emergent conditions” that threatened “residents and visitors.”

The police provided no additional information, and a representative of the department could not immediately be reached on Monday.

The city of Wildwood, with the nearby cities of North Wildwood and Wildwood Crest, brought in $1.9 billion in visitor spending in 2022. It is a popular vacation destination and had just opened its beaches for the season on Friday, according to its tourism board. It had planned events for Sunday that included a food-truck fair and a free concert.

The state of emergency was declared after a string of recent problems in Wildwood. Last month, benches along the boardwalk were vandalized by a group of young men, the police said. And on Tuesday, two men attacked a store on the boardwalk; one brandished a knife while the other pointed a gun at employees who were closing up.

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