Batting cages

Bat-em-Out

This page first began as a shorter piece on the Gone but not Forgotten webpage.

Here is that orginal text:

The parking lot at the north end of the boardwalk, along Hiering Ave, used to be the home of Bat-em-Out. Their were batting cages just off the part of this block that fronts along Boulevard/Route 35, where the CVS is today. The balls were hit towards the beach. The property went all the way to the back of the current parking lot. There was also, in its last years, a store right next to the batting cages. Prior to it being converted into a store there was a restaurant, Flo's, that is as memorable to a lot of Seaside folks as the batting cages.

beach Parking, Seaside Heights, NJ

The parking lot off of Hiering Ave. This was an overgrown field where balls were hit from the batting cages of Bat-em-Out. Not exactly the field of dreams!

My brother worked at Bat-em-Out one summer. His main job was to collect balls and bring them back to the batting cages area. One day he got nailed right in the face! Broke his glasses clean in two right across the bridge of his nose. I seem to remember his eyes were blackened a bit by the incident, though not as bad as when someone has a broken nose. He had to tape his glasses together until he got new ones.

I think the only regret my other brother's and I had about this accident was that we did not get to see it happen. While my brother that was hit by the ball did not share in our amusement, we thought it was a very funny thing to have happened to him.

This next piece is something sent in from Bobby D, one of the people that ran the place. It is part history and part personal memories:

The history of the bat em out is fascinating. Originally it was an archery range until approximately 1960. There was also an accompanying lemon ice stand. Then we converted to pitching machines. Flo's brother,Johnny, played a role in creating the original "iron mikes" and we set up the 1st one.....eventually we had 5.....10 balls for a quarter. The cash flow from the batting cages allowed for the expansion of the lemon ice stand into 1st a counter line selling hot dogs, hamburgers, & subs. Then we expanded into pizzas (Bobby's special) and ultimately into a full line restaurant with seating for 250 people. The restaurant and batting cages were open weekdays from 8am till 4am the following day. On the weekends we were open 24hrs., round the clock. The place was constantly packed .....especially on the weekends after the bars closed at 2am......("the bar rush")........Sometimes you might meet some very special people who might be appearing at one of the famous clubs up on the boardwalk or from the Surf Club which was only a couple of blocks away at the beach. You would always meet an entire array of characters right out of "Goodfellas".........the cages would be going non-stop as people waited to get seats for the 2am
breakfast crowd. The peak of the biz was '65 to '69..............Those 5 years were quite a run. After that, things began to deteriorate for a wide variety of reasons. But Flo's and the batting cages lasted well into the 80's. It was quite an institution and the story of the personalities behind the operation are equally as fascinating....Nat Vega was a marketing genius......Flo, his wife, was a sweetheart with a heart of gold and a workhorse........Nancy Ann, Kenny, and Bobby the children......Bobby D, Ronnie, & Frankie ran the operations..............would fill you in more if there was enough time......,.Today it is all gone, replaced by a CVS............fitting, I guess...........just an amazing place and an amazing time.............and they think they have a story to tell on "Jersey Shore"........Hah!..........Bobby D

Flo's

Do you have any photos of Flo's that you can share? I would greatly appreciate them!! Thank you!
Christie

Flo's

I am 59 years old now and to this day I still crave Flo's pizza! My grandfather had a house in Ocean Beach Unit #2 and we would get take out in the 60's. As he called it "Pitsy Pie". Man, what I wouldn't give for a slice right now or better yet, the cheese blend they used.....wow!

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