As the seventh largest municipality in New Jersey, Toms River prides itself on its 242-year old history that has laid the foundation for our township to become the seat of Ocean County, which is the second largest county in New Jersey. Those moving to Toms River will also discover that it is within close proxmity to New York, Philadelphia and a short distance from Atlantic City.
In 1850, Toms River became the county seat of the newly created Ocean County when it was formed out of southern Monmouth County. During the second half of the 19th century and the early decades of the 20th, many new towns were carved out of Dover Township. The part of Toms River on the south side of the river stretching down to Berkeley Township incorporated as South Toms River in 1927, but the core of the original village on the north side remains part of the wider township to this day. The population in the area exploded in the decades after World War II, due in part to the completion of the Garden State Parkway. Whereas the village was the largest and most densely populated section of the township for over two centuries, the vast majority of residents now shop and work in other sections of the town. In the mid-1990s, state and federal health and environmental agencies identified an increased incidence of childhood cancers in Toms River from 1970-1995. Multiple investigations by state and federal environmental and health agencies indicated that the likely source of the increased cancer risk was contamination from Toms River Chemical Plant (then operated by Ciba-Geigy), which had been in operation since 1952. The area was designated a United States Environmental Protection Agency Superfund site in 1983 after an underground plume of toxic chemicals was identified. The plant ceased operation in 1996. A movement organized around the Dover Township Name Change Committee, founded by Mayor Paul Brush and supported by the Ocean County Chamber of Commerce, collected signatures to put a name change question on the ballot in November 2006. On Election Day, November 7, 2006, over 60 percent of residents voted to approve changing the name from the Township of Dover to the Township of Toms River. The name was officially changed on November 14, 2006.
Located 25 miles north of Atlantic City, this beach community is largely a commuter town. The local economy is supported mainly by retail, real estate and tourism. Located on the Jersey Shore, the city experiences an influx of visitors during the busy summer months, helping local businesses and adding jobs for local. Although much of the Atlantic City area economic development centers around the casinos, the local government has been pursuing its goal to diversify the economy through the development of themed restaurants, retail shopping, night clubs, museums, theaters, minor league baseball and other recreational attractions. Non-casino industries in Atlantic City include services, retail trade, real estate development, distilling, and deep-sea fishing. Many of the goods produced are by-products of the convention/tourism trade.
Check out Cattus Island County Park. Spanning almost five hundred acres, this environmentally sensitive park is home to the Cooper Environmental Center where visitors of all ages may enjoy many displays and collections of snakes and reptiles. Shhhh. Next, Ocean County Library is the perfect place to spend a relaxing morning. An extensive and varied collection of books, periodicals, reference materials, research materials and a host of other services and materials is featured at this public library. Fore! The golfer in the group will love Bey Lea Golf Center. This eighteen-hole public golf course provides a challenge to golfers of all skill levels and includes a clubhouse, a restaurant, a snack bar and a pro shop. If you're looking to explore the Atlantic Ocean, Hobby Lobby Marine is an oceanfront boat dealership offers the best in boats, as well as a marina and related services. Finally, Playdrome is the perfect place to bring the entire family. Bowling and along with many other family recreation activities are offered at this buzzing recreation center.