A Wild Ride through Wildwood

Morey’s Piers are synonymous with Wildwood. It’s not a Wildwood summer without a day on their rides, and they’re all Morey’s. A new book shows how the still family-run company came to rule the boardwalk.

A Wild Ride: The Story of Morey’s Piers, Planet Earth’s Greatest Seaside Amusement Park is a technicolor trip through the Morey family’s 40 years of amusement park history, which started when brothers Will and Bill Morey opened Wipe Out, a fiberglass and steel ride, in North Wildwood in 1969. The company now oversees over 18 acres of beachside space, including three ride piers and two beachfront water parks.

Will’s sons Will and Jack run the company now, and they commissioned A Wild Ride for the company’s 40th anniversary.

It’s not just about Wildwood, though. Jack Wright, who wrote and designed the book and is publisher of Cape May’s Exit Zero newspaper gives context to the Morey story by writing about boardwalk development in Atlantic City and Coney Island. This shows where Wildwood fits in with the larger historical picture.

Wildwood is a love it or hate it kind of town. Some people celebrate the island’s kitsch and over the top architecture and neon, and others sneer. Whatever side of the line you fall on, there is no place like Wildwood, and A Wild Ride shows why.

Right now, the only place you can buy the book is at the Morey’s Morey Store, which is on the Mariner’s Landing pier on the Wildwood boardwalk. Wright says it should be available on amazon.com and in local book stores soon. But if you’re a Morey season pass holder, go to their boardwalk store – you’ll get 10 percent off.

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