By Tim Kelly
As the women’s World Cup continues to capture the imagination of soccer fans around the globe, an active wear company with Ocean City roots is generating its own brand of local soccer excitement.
Cruise Control Gear, co-owned by sisters Candice Kolins, of Ocean City, and Kristen Vogelbacher, of Somers Point, is celebrating and supporting the good work of the Ocean City Nor’easters soccer team at its new store in town.
Cruise Control, which recently opened a retail outlet inside Stainton’s Gallery of Shops, 810 Asbury Ave., will host members of the Nor’easters, an elite amateur club team, from 4-5 p.m. Tuesday at Stainton’s. All are welcome to the free event.
Fans are invited to the free meet-and-greet for autographs, photo-ops and soccer chatter with players and coaches from the Nor’easters. Concessions will be sold, with proceeds benefiting the Nor’easters, as will a portion of proceeds from merchandise sales of Cruise Control Gear.
“The Nor’easters have always been such a great supporter of our community. We wanted to give something back to the Nor’easters,” said Cruise Control Gear Marketing Manager Dan Loggi.
Cruise Control is also an official supplier of practice gear for the Nor’easters, who play their home games at Ocean City High School’s Carey Stadium, and who train at the soccer complex on Tennessee Avenue.
Kolins, 34, a former four-year No. 1 tennis player at Villanova, and sister Vogelbacher, 35, a former captain of the Princeton tennis team, said they value the efforts of the Nor’easters, whose mission is to develop young players in a professional setting — while retaining amateur status and college eligibility and pursuing their academic goals.
The team also promotes and partners with youth soccer programs throughout South Jersey. More than 60 Nor’easter players have gone on to play professionally, according to the team’s website.
“We’re extremely grateful to partner and support the efforts of the Ocean City Nor’easters,” Kolins said. “Our mission is to help give back in any way we can to this amazing family community and working with the Nor’easters is a great opportunity for that.”
In addition to supplying the Nor’easters, Cruise Control Gear offers a wide range of high performance apparel for tennis, golf, training gear and other sports. More information is available at the website, www.CruiseControlGear.com.