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Thursday, August 11, 2005Past Issues - S | M | T | W | T | F | S
 
South Jersey

Monday, August 13, 2001
Better to delay opening `Big J' than to rush it

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  • More than 300 articles about the USS New Jersey
  • It's appropriate to put it off for a couple of days.

    The grand opening of the USS New Jersey has been delayed. Bummer. But it's more important to get things right than to rush them.

    The Home Port Alliance last week announced that the hoped- for Labor Day opening would be delayed. Tropical Storm Barry forced a barge carrying four 110-foot steel pilings for the ship's anchorage system to seek shelter in Pascagoula, Miss. After the pilings are driven into the Delaware River, they will be filled with concrete that must cure for several days.

    It's hoped the ship will be opened shortly after Labor Day.

    The alliance also wanted to avoid conflicts with two Tweeter Center concerts: one featuring Jimmy Buffett and one including Eminem. We can understand not wanting to disrupt Buffett, but, for Pete's sake, don't worry about accommodating Eminem.

    Anyway, as tough as it might be to accept a delay in opening the ship, it's important to temper anticipation with logic.

    The people of South Jersey fought long and hard to bring the "Big J" home. They overcame tremendous political odds to persuade the Navy that the Camden Waterfront is the proper place for this historic ship. They have volunteered their time to get it ready.

    So, naturally, they are acting like kids on Christmas Eve.

    Be patient. Savor the anticipation. Soon, South Jersey will unwrap its present and the ship officially will be part of the community.

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