Friday, July 19, 2013


Maryl revives summer days from her past, so welcome in this heat!

Then                                                                              Now
Caryl and I just spent a few days at my house at the Jersey shore mapping out some new ideas for Second Lives Club. I live a few towns north of Asbury Park, where years ago my high school friends and I would take the bus in for a day of sun and sand. That seaside community took a beating from Superstorm Sandy last October just like the rest of the surrounding beaches although Asbury Park’s past has been a bit of a roller coaster ride all along.

Closed Palace Amusements
With its 70’s race riots and other attractions keeping vacationers away, Asbury Park turned into the decaying resort town memorialized in song by local Bruce Springsteen and in picture by legendary photographer Joe Maloney. I was buoyed to learn of his current exhibit, Asbury Park & The Jersey Shore, c. 1979, at Rick Wester Fine Art gallery in New York City (526 West 26th Street) and online. For me it portrays a period anticipating something bigger to come.

And so it is. This once popular beach city with its boardwalk, tree lined streets and downtown shopping district is currently going through its own revival. Condo developers and professional couples from urban areas are leading this revitalization. Yet again Asbury Park has its ups and downs with eminent domain issues arising that are riling the longtime residents. Film director Christina Eliopoulos captures that side of the story in her iconic title “Greetings From Asbury Park”.

For good or bad that progress is slow but in the meantime Asbury Park’s legendary music scene swells. Not ironically it's musicians who have lent their name and fame to raise money to help restore the devastated beach front towns hit by Sandy. Bruce Springsteen (64 next month) led some of these efforts with his refocused second life support of Habitat for The Humanity and other causes.  

I saw The Beach Boys and The Who at the Convention Hall decades ago and untold number of bands at The Stone Pony. I’m told that if you hit the music club on the right night, Bruce stills emerges from the audience and starts playing.  How cool is that in this backstreets but born to run kind of town?

Photo by Mark R. Sullivan


  1. Summer at the shore! Takes me back to my East Coast teen years! Thanks for the memories....and looking forward to hearing about those plans for Second Lives Club!

  2. Hi Jane. What part of the east coast? Remember any music concerts from those days?