A weird retail morphing of sorts has been going on in New Jersey. Old shuttered Kmarts are coming back to life as new Targets. It’s like a zombie flick but with bargains and a toy department.

The old Kmart in Somers Point was taken over by a new Target. The Kearny Kmart that closed last year is scheduled to give rise to another Target. And in Wall Township, the much-anticipated Target store also used to be a Kmart.

That store opening has been in limbo for weeks as the company has been trying to get everything squared away. Now we know it’s finally opening on Sunday, June 12.

This 91,000-square-foot store is at 1825 Route 35. It has sat unused for the entire pandemic, closed since December of 2019.

So this has been a long time in coming. And is there anything more night and day than what Kmart had become and what Target is? Kmarts were outdated and drab, run-down. Targets are clean and well organized. Brighter. Cheerier.

Target sign on Cedar Bridge Avenue in Brick
Google Street View
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And it even earned the silly Targé nickname for people who felt it added some sophistication to discount shopping.

Just as there were once so many Kmarts dotting the Jersey landscape, Target is now an ever-growing presence. There are 48 locations and my smart money bets there will be more.

I have some fond Target memories of the one on Route 1 north in North Brunswick from when I first moved back home to New Jersey with my kids, Jack and Mina, after my divorce. I was a single dad with custody and very little money then, so a cheap treat was stopping at that Target to get them an inexpensive lunch in their dining area along the front wall and then letting them play the Mario Bros Wii display in the back of the store. Then browsing the toy aisle where I could never get my son to leave the Lego section.

I’m sure this Sunday’s Target opening in Wall Township is going to be packed after years of waiting.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

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These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey

A trip to New Jersey doesn't have to be all about the beach. Our state has some incredible trails, waterfalls, and lakes to enjoy.

From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to the hidden gems of New Jersey, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is such a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it's a great workout.

Before you go out on the trails and explore some of our listeners' suggestions, I have some tips on hiking etiquette from the American Hiking Society.

If you are going downhill and run into an uphill hiker, step to the side and give the uphill hiker space. A hiker going uphill has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.

Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless they are marked as an official trail, steer clear of them. By going off-trail you may cause damage to the ecosystems around the trail, the plants, and wildlife that live there.

You also do not want to disturb the wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.

Bicyclists should yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also yield to horses, but I’m not sure how many horses you will encounter on the trails in New Jersey.
If you are thinking of bringing your dog on your hike, they should be leashed, and make sure to clean up all pet waste.

Lastly, be mindful of the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it's probably best to save your hike for another day.

I asked our listeners for their suggestions of the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions: