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Cruise on the Shrewsbury Like an Admiral with Historic Naval War College Yacht

Updated: Jul 21, 2023

All photos by R.C. Staab

At the Jersey Shore, one can join a group of people on whale watching boats, riverboats, party boats full of fishermen, even three different "pirates ships". But for a small party outing, family event or romantic evening, taking a cruise on the Naval War College historic yacht outshines the rest.

The three major reasons to take this historic yacht tour.

1. History

The 50--foot Admiral’s Barge or Commander Cutter was designed by Ed Monk and built in February 1957 at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard and then sailed to the U.S. Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. For more than a half a century, the U.S. Naval War College Command Cutter was mostly used to entertain distinguished visitors, Secretaries of Defense and Navy, Chairmen of Joint Chiefs of Staff, Chiefs of Naval Operations and Fleet Commanders. Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy, King Constantine of Greece, and Secretaries of State Dean Rusk and Dr. Henry Kissinger were all guests.

In 2015, it was destined to be scrapped for parts by the U.S. Navy but Joe Ruffini of Red Bank Roofing outbid the scrappers in a public auction to save this historic cutter. Ruffini of Red Bank Roofing spent countless hours refurbishing the boat back to its original glory in 2018. Now, it's available for charter on the Shrewsbury and Navesink Rivers and out to Sandy Hook Bay and the New York Harbor.

2. Intimate interiors

It's a handsome boat from the minute you come onboard. Inside the first cabin in a lounge area that seats about 10 people.

A few steps and one reaches a party space just outside the captain's deck. The space has a cooler and a variety of surfaces to handle snacks and drinks brought on board by guests. In the rear is an outdoor lounge area where one can watch the world go by while sipping a drink.

The boat is oak and double-planked yellow Alaska cedar sides with teak decks. It weighs 20 tons, is 50-feet -long and accommodates 25 people.

3. Setting on the Shrewsbury River

The boat leaves from the Branchport Creek of the Shrewsbury River and cruises past the mansions of Rumson, Monmouth Beach and under the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge toward Sandy Hook. Depending on the amount of time of the charter, the boat can travel up the Navesink River to Red Bank or under the Highlands Bridge to Sandy Hook Bay.

Keep an eye out for the many ospreys, egrets and swans that nest in the uninhabited islands to the east as one travels north.


Sail with No. 1 Jersey Shore Travel Guide

What are the best attractions, boardwalks, cultural sights, nightlife and food to sample? Do what TV, film and stage celeb Mario Lopez does when he visits the Shore and pick up a copy of the book, 100 Things to Do at the Jersey Shore Before You Die. Visit www.100ThingsJerseyShore to order your autographed copy.


Tips for Getting to The Landing at Oceanport

Road Access & Parking: The main entry to The Landing at Oceanport is on River Street, a tiny suburban street that's easy to miss. It's north of Route 36 in Long Branch and east of Monmouth Park Racetrack. Use a GPS to find 417 River Street from Branchport Avenue.

Amenities: There is a bathroom on board the yacht, as well as plenty of counter space if you want to bring your own snacks and drinks. Catering is available.

Contact: Click here for more information about chartering the boat.

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