So you’ve come to the Jersey Shore, and you want to get around. But how do you communicate with the natives? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here are some tips on how to sound like a native in record time.
First, if you’re heading to the Jersey Shore, we say you’re going “down the Shore.” And remember, to get to the beach, you must first go down the Shore.
Next, when you hear someone say “up North“, that doesn’t mean Canada. Up North, to us, means the northern part of the state.
And those summer folks who come down the Shore from up North? They’re called “bennies.” We blame them for all sorts of problems, anything from too much traffic to too much litter to losing at the slot machines. But we appreciate the business they bring to our Shore towns.
Daytripping folks who come to the area from elsewhere are called “shoobies.” This term originated in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s from the tourists who brought their lunch to the Shore in a shoebox, hence depriving local merchants from revenue that would have been spent on food. Sometimes the term is used for tourists who wear their shoes on the beach, but that’s not the original meaning. Of course, if you want to fit in, removing your shoes as soon as you reach the sand definitely helps.
If you come from a rural South Jersey community in the Pine Barrens, we may call you a “Piney.” That area, plus parts of Salem and Cumberland Counties, is called “down Jersey.”
Finally, if someone asks you if you want a “pie“, they don’t mean the sweet apple, cherry or peach variety. In Jersey Shore-speak, a “pie” is a pizza; in some establishments, you may see it called a “tomato pie.”
And if it’s a pie you’re craving, I suggest you try one of the Mack & Manco pizza parlors on the Ocean City boardwalk. Most people love Mack & Manco pies. If you come down the Shore, try one. They’re delicious.