A few hours after shutting down traffic into town from Route 35 following a tweet by Mayor Matt Doherty, saying the shore town is "at capacity," the roads have re-opened.

Beach chairs lined up on the beach in Belmar (Bud McCormick)

Doherty sent out a tweet at about 3:30 p.m. Sunday saying all traffic into the municipality from Route 35 would be "shut down immediately." He told NJ 101.5 just before 7 p.m. that the roads heading back into the municipality would be open again at 7 p.m.

"The 29th annual Seafood Festival was today and that mixed with the nice weather brought down a  tremendous amount of people," Doherty said.

This is the first time officials have ever had to shut down the municipality. Doherty said the decision was made in conjunction with the borough's police deparmtent, and was done primarily for safety reasons.


The Monmouth County Municipality is one of the most popular beach destinations for New Jerseyans and people visiting from other states.

On warmer days, such as Sunday, it is not unusual for an influx of people to visit the shore town. The seafood festival took place at Silver Lake Park June 12-14 and featured dozens of vendors. More than 200,000 people visit the festival over a three-day period each year.