July 28, 2005: The Starting Date of the First Toms River Fest

Semiannual musical festival brings top-name acts to Toms River

July 28, 2005 marked the start of the first Toms River Fest, a concert venue which has brought a wide variety of performing artists from different genres and eras to the campus of and the then-Ritacco Center. 

The festival returned in 2006 and 2008. Among the artists who have performed at Toms River Fest are Joan Jett, Maroon 5, and KC and the Sunshine Band.  In addition to concerts, the festival has also included several other attractions, including rollercoasters and other rides, fireworks, and plenty of food.

The event has had its problems during the years it ran. 2006 had a particularly bad heat wave which impacted attendance. Many attendees complained of the cost and brought up the overly corporate atmosphere of the event. Toms River Fest also takes place right around the same time as the Ocean County Fair; critics of the festival say the fair is much more open and accessible. The festival also had to compete with the nearby Seaside Heights boardwalk; many people favored the ocean breezes over Toms River North's sweltering blacktop.

A-Ball July 28, 2012 at 11:47 AM
Another relic of the Ritacco Era. Better to stop reminding us about it. It never made any money and relied upon volunteers...school teachers etc..who sacrificed their time for that bum who swindled everyone with his Ralph Cramdon ideas.
ragtime July 28, 2012 at 12:20 PM
washer - time for you to enter the spin cycle then dry off. Better yet, go find a corner and twitch somewhere. As for The Patch, why would you even run this story? Must be a slow news day, or someone is putting the pressure on behind the scenes!
Joseph A. Lypowy July 28, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Washer is right! School workers were used as forced slaves and school children were used as pimps to sell tickets.It was not just the heat that drove people away, after the initial hype of the first year, poeple relaized it did not offer much for a lot of money. Profit figures were inflated in the first year to hide it was really a money looser for the district. The Ocean County fair is a much better deal for only $6. If Mr. R was getting kickbacks from the insurance brokers at the same time, I wonder what was in it for him from the promoters?
Joseph Herbert July 28, 2012 at 04:20 PM
Toms River, like it or not children, is among the top ten cities in New Jersey. the only reason Toms River Fest Failed was the lack of Planning, Administration & Execution of the Events. Inclusive in this is the failure of our town's politicians, of both major parties, to effectively plan and administrate. The failure of this is obvious from the location of things like First Energy Park, why is it in the Lakewood Industrial Park. Why is the Seeping Garbage, Oops, Ciba-Giegy the former Toxic Waste Site still undeveloped? As Industrial Expansion sites go, there are few better, it even has the availability of rail service. These are all questions that need to be answered.
I'm Constipated July 28, 2012 at 06:38 PM
Fascists. What makes Toms River think that it is better than any other town.
A-Ball July 29, 2012 at 12:35 AM
Thanks for the back-up..couldnt make sense of ragtime's comment anyway. Maybee cause im the washer and he's the rag


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