Did I mention that they’ve rebuilt the Asbury Park boardwalk near the casino? I probably did.
Also: I just discovered last month that those funny bicycle-cars are called “surreys.”
But yeah, new construction, totally.
A visual chronicle of suburban NJ
Memorial Day weekend on the Jersey Shore! Time for everyone to put Sandy behind them and start enjoying the unofficial start of summer!
Unfortunately, the unofficial start of summer has been about 55F at best. Nobody wants to lay out in weather like that.
Today, at least, the sun is out; it’s been rainy and overcast for the past two days. But all the boardwalkers and joggers are dressed in sweatshirts, long pants, fleece jackets, gloves. It’s not beach weather.
Shore towns have pushed themselves to rebuild hurriedly, to be ready for tourists and beachgoers and commerce-bringers at the beginning of the summer season… and the summer season comes with a tiny fizzle.
Well. Shore towns will have the rest of the summer to catch up, I hope.
Despite Ocean Grove being denied FEMA funding for rebuilding its boardwalk, the construction continues anyway. The Ocean Grove beach offices/ restrooms/ base of the fishing pier is one of the lucky sections to get a revamped boardwalk out of the deal.
Apparently this new boardwalk is a composite material. (Whether to use wood or composite for the new boardwalks has been the source of controversy in other shore towns [most notably Belmar].)
They’ve done a lot of construction since January:
Which is all great progress from what Sandy wrought:
This is the north end of the Ocean Grove boardwalk, which hasn’t seen much of any reconstruction. Maybe they’re planning on patching the rough areas and otherwise keeping it as is. I hear that the dunes protected the boards from a lot of harm!
I visited the shore last weekend, because that’s where my family lives, and we took a stroll along the Ocean Grove shoreline.
It’s been over two months since Sandy. I had assumed the boardwalk would be completely fenced off by now— you know, to dissuade stupid sightseers like us from skipping about on warped and dangerous boards— but no. And we weren’t the only thrill-seekers out for a warped-board stroll.
It’s sad. The whole shore is sad. Everyone knows that. You were there, or you saw the pictures, or whatever. This is old news.
What’s new and encouraging is the reconstruction— or the beginnings of preparing for it, anyway.
Ocean Grove volunteers have begun tearing the unsalvageable planks from the underlying pilings.
It looks as though they’re trying to save as much of the existing boardwalk as possible.
I’m told that even Belmar has turned its sights towards rebuilding the boardwalk. Although… I’d like to think that Belmar can start concentrating on its frivolous boardwalk now because the rest of the town is in such a good place, but there’s talk that beginning boardwalk reconstruction might be intended to create a distraction for still-overwhelmed Belmar residents.
Still. I like the idea of raising morale.
In the past, the City Daily Photo community had “theme days” on the first of each month. January 1st was always “Photo of the Year,” where you (or your readers) picked your “best” photo from the past year.
This year, the City Daily Photo community is veering away from monthly “theme days,” so there is no January theme day.
But I haven’t been an active member of the community for quite some time anyway, so I’m not going to let that stop me! Heh.
I’m not sure that this photo is my “best,” but it sure got the most traffic (original post here; other Hurricane Sandy posts here). And I’ll always associate that damn storm with the experience of walking on those warped and treacherous boards at Ocean Grove.
To the my readers who have stuck with me despite this blog’s ongoing journey downhill: thank you, from the bottom of my heart. I may not always respond to every comment and every “like,” but I do read and deeply appreciate each one.
Right now, here’s the deal:
So here are some other photographers’ photos of what these towns look like now (plus some of my old outdated photos, ‘cos I’ve been photographing the shore for years).
|Avon by the Sea; me; March 2008||Avon by the Sea; Ashley Peskoe, NJ.com; October 2012|
|Asbury Park; me; October 6, 2012||Asbury Park; Rob Spahr, NJ.com; October 30, 2012|
|Belmar; me; March 2008||Belmar; Bob Bielk, Asbury Park Press; October 2012|
|Sandy Hook bike path and Hartshorne Drive; me; August 2009||Sandy Hook bike path; Mark R. Sullivan, Asbury Park Press; November 2012|
|Sea Girt; me; June 2008||Sea Girt; Bob Bielk, Asbury Park Press; October 2012|
This is outside of my established “radius” for the New Providence area, but it’s still New Jersey, and it’s kind of awesome.
The sixth annual Asbury Park Zombie Walk happened yesterday. I didn’t stay for the whole thing (shame on me!), but I did get some fun shots of the undead wandering around Asbury Park (which happens less often than you’d think).
More serious readers may ask: What’s the point?
I would answer: There is no point. It’s fun, that’s the point.