Although Atlantic City has the glitz of sparkling lights and the influx of people traveling to drop their dollars into one of the slot machines at the many gambling establishments, Ventnor, which is just south of New Jersey's casino mecca, hugs the coastline and abounds with colorful umbrellas every summer on its sandy, sun-drenched beaches. Beach bums and horseshoe crabs know a good thing when they see it. And they see it in Ventnor.
The city might not invoke thoughts of that country across the pond, but England had a slight hand in giving Ventnor its name in 1889. The Camden and Atlantic Land Company needed a name for the section of land that was south of Atlantic City. Mrs. S. Bartram Richards, the wife of the land company's secretary-treasurer, was reminiscing about Ventnor, the English seashore village she had visited on the Isle of Wight. When she suggested the name, it was met with approval. More than 10,000 people have the pleasure of calling Ventnor home. Children in prekindergarten through the eighth grade are educated in the Ventnor City School District. Older students attend Atlantic City High School as part of the sending/receiving relationship with that school district. Ventnor has three commissioners, each of which is elected to serve a four-year term in office. Following the election, the commissioners choose one of their own to serve as mayor. Ventnor is served by the 2nd Congressional district and the 2nd legislative district. There are a wealth of businesses offerings services within Ventnor's city limits including nail salons, pharmacies, hardware stores, bike rentals, women's boutiques, and ice cream parlors. Ventnor is also the place to get a hot slice, indulge in sushi, or pick up the fresh catch of the day to fry up at home. The city has a summer camp program for children. Adult education classes such as Zumba and self-defense are offered to residents as part of the community recreation department. For those interested in painting and dance, the Ventnor City Cultural Arts Center is the place for classes in acrylics, watercolors, oil painting, wax sculpture, yoga, Tai Chi, creative movement, ballet, tap, and jazz. Like many other New Jersey coastal towns, Ventnor offers protected beaches, but requires sand hoppers to wear beach tags. The money collected from beach tag purchases is used to pay lifeguards and keep beaches clean. Throughout the summer months the city of Ventnor hosts many events including beach concerts. And while the population does increase in the summertime, Ventnor is peaceful and enjoyable all year long. It has become a popular spot for retirees and those purchasing vacation homes.