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June 22, 2023

Perfect Beach Day NJ, a company run by local teens, takes the hassle out of shore trips

Founded by Lower Merion High School students last summer, the beach rental business serves Brigantine, Long Beach Island, Margate and Ocean City

Lifestyle Jersey Shore
perfect beach day nj Courtesy of/Sam Abella

Four Philly-area teenage entrepreneurs run Perfect Beach Day NJ, a caddying and beach rental company serving Brigantine, Long Beach Island, Margate and Ocean City. Above are cofounders and Lower Merion High School rising seniors Jude Vaughan and Sam Abella.

One of the few inconveniences that can arise during a day trip down the shore — besides losing your sunglasses in the ocean or stepping on a jellyfish — is lugging unwieldy beach gear to and from the car. Thankfully, a group of local teens launched a business to remedy that hassle.

Perfect Beach Day NJ, a Jersey Shore beach gear rental company, was founded last year by Lower Merion High School students Sam Abella and Jude Vaughan. In its second summer, the business has doubled its reach by adding more employees and beach towns to its repertoire.

Abella and Vaughan, friends since kindergarten, have traveled down the shore all their lives and saw the need for a way to ease the beach experience for families.

"The main thing we strive for in our business is the convenience and leisure because we know how difficult, obviously, it can be putting your kids in the car, getting your stuff together," Abella said. "So we really just want to take away the hassle of a beach day and make it as fun as possible."

The company now serves Brigantine, Long Beach Island, Margate City and Ocean City. To accomplish the expansion, the Perfect Beach Day NJ team welcomed two "franchisees"  Elias Toren, who previously attended Upper Dublin High School in Fort Washington before moving to Florida with his family, and Palmer Zarzycki, who attends Harriton High School in Bryn Mawr. Each employee is in charge of a different shore town territory.

Together, the four rising high school seniors provide beach gear rental packages. The base package costs $80 and comes with a cabana, two chairs, a cooler with ice and two beach tags, while the upgraded package costs $120 and comes with a cabana, four chairs, a cooler with ice, four beach tags, a boogie board and toys. Customizable packages are also available.

There are no time limits for the day rentals; when customers are finished at the beach, they can contact the team who disassembles and removes the items. 

"We strive to really form a relationship (with the customers), because I think a big part of our business is the trust factor," Abella said. "Our communication sets us apart and we make sure that everything's okay."

perfect beach day tentCourtesy of/Sam Abella

Perfect Beach Day NJ co-founder Jude Vaughan sets up a tent for a customer in Long Beach Island.

Perfect Beach Day NJ is also offering caddying this summer, meaning employees will carry customers' beach gear for them. The service's base price is $40.

"Last year, we were doing rentals of the beach supplies. And what set us apart was the fact that we're kind of combining two different services that we saw on the Jersey Shore previously, which would be setting up people's stuff and also renting the stuff to them," Vaughan said. "But this summer, we're also getting into the field of just simply caddying other people's stuff ... because we saw a lot of requests for that last year."

The company serviced over 70 customers and groups last summer. This year, it has expanded its inventory and is looking to continue growing by partnering with companies, real estate agents and rental services down the shore to get the word out to vacationers.

With summer 2023 in full swing, Perfect Beach Day NJ has already catered to several customers and received multiple inquiries. In Ocean City, the team will soon handle one of its biggest requests yet: a 40-person beach birthday party.

"Not only are we doing individual setups, but we can also acclimate to be able to handle larger groups like that," Zarzycki said.

The teenage entrepreneurs feel "pretty comfortable" running the business now, but they did initially face challenges in generating demand and reaching their target audience. Luckily, the team has received support from adults in their lives, including sharing social media posts.

"One disadvantage that I had with being younger was the fact that I didn't really have Facebook," Toren said. "And that's what most of the parents and the customers are on. So I don't really have a following. ... But my mom, because she has been on Facebook for a while, that's really helpful."

The team plans to run Perfect Beach Day NJ at least through college; some members plan to study business as they run their own company.

"I think it's set up really nicely, since it's a summer business," Vaughan said. "So as we continue through college; we'll be able to come to the Jersey Shore each summer and still run this."

"Yeah, I totally agree," Abella said. "And with the success we've currently had, why not continue? I mean, it's working out so far. And I think it'll continue as we continue to expand."

To book a rental with Perfect Beach Day NJ, potential customers can contact the team at the company's websiteInstagram or Facebook.

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