A couple of weekends ago I took my two studio assistants on a day trip to Asbury Park, New Jersey. We just love it there and we feel that we need to support the local business since last year’s storm. We ate crepes and ice cream, visited the antique stores and galleries and sat on the beach. One if my favorite stores on Cookman Ave. is Flying Saucers Retro Kitchenware. The lady who works there is always so kind and welcoming whenever we visit, and the items in the store bring back fond memories of my childhood.
A water park on the Boardwalk
The Obligatory Beach Selfie
The Convention Center
I love the architecture in Asbury Park! There is a mixture of very old buildings and new structures on the boardwalk that makes it totally unique. You could just spend the day taking pictures all along the boardwalk and the surrounding areas.
We took a day trip to one of our favorite shore destinations, Asbury Park. This was our first visit since Superstorm Sandy. It was great to see the beach full of sun bathers and colorful umbrellas. The boardwalk was bustling with people and the food stands all had lines. We walked past Madam Marie’s from the Bruce Springsteen song and it reminded me of his lyric “down the shore everything is alright”. There are certain places that are constants in our lives. At different times of my life I have visited different New Jersey shore towns, such as Belmar, Avon, Seaside Heights, Point Pleasant and Wildwood. Each town has a unique quality and caters to different age groups and life styles.
Selfie on the Beach
The advertising campaign for the shore this year is “Stronger Than The Storm”. People from New Jersey, and especially the shore, are known for their resiliency in the face of adversity.
The Convention Center
Last summer we stayed at the beautiful Starlux Hotel in the heart of Wildwood, New Jersey. I had wanted to stay at the Starlux ever since our first trip to the shore town many years ago.
The Starlux is one of the most unique hotels in Wildwood. The rooms are decorated in a retro style with kitschy touches like lava lamps. You can see the Wildwood sign (my favorite landmark) from the pool and you are walking distance from the boardwalk.
The Glass enclosed lobby
The stylized neon sign
The design in the pool reminds me of olives in a martini glass
The inside of the glass enclosed lobby
I love the Doo Wop architecture!
The view of the Wildwood sign from the parking lot
All of these photos were taken with my iPhone using the Hipstamatic app. I want to do a series of Inkpad iPad drawings of this hotel and some of the other landmarks around Wildwood. This town is so full of wonderful Doo Wop architecture and history and each time I visit I discover more fun and unique places!
Did you hear, the cops finally busted Madame Marie,
for tellin’ fortunes better than they do …
Bruce Springsteen, 4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)
If you grew up in New Jersey this song was a big part of your youth. As you walk around Asbury Park you can’t help but think of some of your favorite summer songs.
Last weekend we took a second visit to Asbury Park to see the Boardwalk and some other places that we missed on our first visit. Beach season was officially over but the boardwalk was still hopping with tourists, locals and street musicians. There were food stands in colorful shipping “containers” between the shops and restaurants. We had funnel cake and lemonade while listening to a trio dressed kind of like steampunk gypsies singing about vampires. We walked past a lot of the landmarks, like Madame Marie’s stand from Bruce’s song (yes, it really does exist), the Stone Pony, and The Convention Center. At the Wonder Bar they were having an outdoor Yappy Hour, where people brought their dogs. There were more Shepard Fairey murals beyond the main drag.
The Convention Center
The Convention Center is filled with little shops and bars
We could hear a musician playing guitar and singing a Door’s song here while walking on the beach
McLoone’s Asbury Grille, formerly a Howard Johnsons
Shepard Fairey murals
The Asbury Park Boardwalk is timeless, with architecture from several different eras standing side by side. Some of the buildings reminded me of Giorgio de Chirico’s isolated landscapes. Music is a big part of the Boardwalk and you can’t help but think of your favorite summer songs from when you were growing up.
Last weekend I visited Asbury Park for the first time in many years. Before going to Dr. Sketchy’s in the Passions Building I had a chance to take some pictures around the beach and boardwalk area.
There was a mixture of the old and new Asbury Park. The Casino building had street art inside and around it.
Shepard Fairey mural of Paul Simonon of the Clash
Mural inside of Casino Building
Philadelphia Toboggan Company Carousel Building (Carousel is no longer in the building)
Detail of artwork over the door
View of Boardwalk
I really want to visit Asbury Park again to visit more of it’s landmarks that I missed, like the Convention Center and the Stone Pony. It really is a unique part of the New Jersey shore.
It’s the time of year when I start thinking about the beach and the New Jersey shore in particular. I was looking for photos to “Percolate” and some of the iPhone photos from Wildwood lend themselves to the process.
The Famous Wildwood Sign