If you had any doubt that fall was here, the closure of the remaining seasonal businesses still open into October might be a hard-to-deny sign.
You have a final chance to drive into Stewart's Root Beer on Fischer and Route 37 East through this weekend, and then it's a winter of tracking down which boardwalk and summer-thriving businesses hold off-season hours among the many steel shutters.
Though Stewart's and Rich's Ice Cream remain open now, many other businesses used last weekend's Columbus Day traffic to prolong their season before closing. Park Seafood on the Seaside Park boardwalk uses parade day to mark its official final day.
Other boardwalk and barrier island mainstays have converted to off-season hours, such as Ryan's Deli, Bum Rogers, Luna De Rosa and Maruca's Tomato Pies, open year-round.
Whether it's sad to see or just an undeniable fact of the calendar, nevertheless it's the end of the tourist season.
What is your chosen way to drag out the summer?