The Camden landmark will halt operations temporarily, starting after Labor Day.
The Battleship New Jersey has been through four wars and two official retirements. Still, the floating museum could not stave off a 75% drop in visitors, along with the uncertainty of future funding from the state.
“We cannot, unfortunately, continue to operate indefinitely at our current way of operating,” said Board of Trustees chairman Marshall Spevak. “We’re taking proactive actions in order to make sure that the battleship will be open for years to come.”
COVID-19 restrictions prevent any events that bring in revenue, like overnight visits. The vessel will welcome visitors until Sept. 7. After that, all but a skeleton crew will be laid off until they can reopen for normal business.
While most public events will be canceled, Spevak said they’re trying to ensure at least a couple special events for Veterans Day and Pearl Harbor Day.
“We are working through how to make those happen, be it a Zoom ceremony or just having a smaller ceremony on the ship,” he said.
Meanwhile, they’re looking for any financial help they can get.