Toms River Township (or simply Toms River) is a township in Ocean County, New Jersey, United States, and the county seat of Ocean County. On November 7, 2006, voters approved a change of the official name from the Township of Dover (or, Dover Township) to the Township of Toms River, effective November 14, 2006. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township had a total population of 91,239, with the township ranking as the 8th-most-populous municipality in the state in 2010 (after having been ranked 7th in 2000) and the second most-populous municipality in Ocean County (behind Lakewood Township, which had a population of 92,843). The 2010 population increased by 1,533 (+1.7%) from the 89,706 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 13,335 (+17.5%) from the 76,371 counted in the 1990 Census.
What is now Toms River Township was established by Royal charter as Dover Township on March 1, 1768, from portions of Shrewsbury Township, while the area was still part of Monmouth County. Dover Township was incorporated as one of New Jersey's first 104 townships by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on February 21, 1798. Portions of the township were taken to from Jackson Township (March 6, 1844), Union Township (March 10, 1846, now Barnegat Township), Brick Township (February 15, 1850), Manchester Township (April 6, 1865), Berkeley Township (March 31, 1875), Island Heights (May 6, 1887), Lavallette (December 21, 1887) and Seaside Heights (February 26, 1913).
In 2006, Toms River was ranked by Morgan Quitno Press as the 14th safest "city" in the United States, of 369 cities nationwide. In 2007, Toms River was again ranked as the 14th-safest "city" in the United States of 371 cities nationwide.
Toms River can be seen in various TV and news media including MTV's Made and Jersey Shore (seasons 1,3,and 5), HBO's Boardwalk Empire and the original The Amityville Horror movie. In 1998, Toms River East Little League won the Little League World Series. The township has what is said to be the second largest Halloween parade in the world.
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