Mayor Matt Doherty wasn't really joking when he said the standing-room only crowd at Monday's Belmar Borough Council meeting was "All here for you, Gladys."
Longtime Belmar resident Gladys Meccia was honored with a special resolution, celebrating her 90th birthday, and recognizing her commitment and love of the borough during Monday's packed meeting that focused on a boardwalk reconstruction project.
But the standing-room only crowd saw the meeting kick off with the mayor awarding special resolutions, including one celebrating the longtime volunteer's recent 90th birthday. The borough council meeting for a moment turned into a belated birthday party.
Meccia is an active volunteer in Belmar, participating in several civic groups and showing her deep love of the borough through the decades. Born in Newark, Meccia vacationed in Belmar throughout the years and later moved to the borough.
The borough showed its love for Meccia by offering multiple rounds of applause to the longtime resident, as well as impromptu song.
After the resolution was read into the record by Doherty, the council chambers erupted into a round of "Happy Birthday to You," and then chants of "Gladys! Gladys!"
Meccia was accompanied by a friend and a granddaughter, one of several in her family.
The mayor greeted her with a celebratory hug, and during the recognition Meccia stood smiling, clasping her hands open and close in surprise.
"Oh goodness," she said.