Monday, July 09, 2012

weekend report

On Friday, my granddaughter Rebecca returned to Bethesda and her social life. Her father took this picture before they left.

My weekend started Friday night with First Friday gallery-hopping in a nearby town. Saturday, lunch at a friend's and then a trip down the shore.  Diana Krall, my favorite jazz singer and pianist was performing at the Great Auditorium in Ocean Grove, NJ, so that concert was our destination.
Ocean Grove is a visually charming, Victorian square mile full of houses like these.  It was founded by the Methodists as a religious community by the Ocean Group Camp Meeting Society. You can read another version of the town's unique history here.

 Religion is Ocean Grove's focus to this very day but they have non-sectarian events in their auditorium from time to time (hence, Diana Krall). Every summer, worshipers descend on this pristine beach town and set up tents to live in. It has been thus since the 19th century.

Asbury Park, home of Bruce Springsteen and the Stone Pony, is the next town.  I remember, as I was growing up, that there was a locked gate across the boardwalk between Ocean Grove and Asbury, so unless you were a resident of Ocean Grove, you could not enter.  In 1980, the courts outlawed that as a violation of church and state, so now you can walk the boardwalk from one town to the other.

In the left background is what remains of the Asbury Park Convention Center, above. It is apparently on the national register of historic places, but it doesn't look that way:-(.  We passed these muscicians on the way into the shell of the old Casino.  They were excellent and we stopped to give them a donation and chat. They're on tour.

This is the shell of the famous Casino (above) which is supposedly being restored.  I don't see much evidence of it, do you??


Nonetheless, the boardwalk in Asbury is coming back.  It's crowded and noisy and Madame Marie is apparently still in business telling fortunes.  We didn't have time to stop because we had to go eat dinner before the concert.

A P.S. on the concert, which was terrific: there was a bad storm 1/2 hour before concert time and the electricity in the whole town of Ocean Grove went out.  Through an heroic effort, authorities got service back for the Great Hall and the concert went on an hour late.  Worth it!  And the air cooled off considerably.

Sunday, a spur of the moment invitation to meet friends at the movies.  Another must-see picture:
The Intouchables.  Simply marvelous.  See it!!


Marianne said...

Magnifique balade, merci de nous en avoir fait profiter.
J'espère que vous avez vu le film dans la version française à cause de l'humour français, il est excellent et a eu un très grand succès chez nous, il est basé sur une histoire vrai.

Cathy Bargar said...

What fun! Love the hair, Rayna! Your granddaughter is a beauty - I bet she had a fabulous time with you. Maybe you get the prize for "hippest grandma".

Dianne Koppisch Hricko said...

thanks for the lovely tour of Ocean Grove.

Gerrie said...

What Cathy said! I would so love to go to a Diana Krall concert. Lucky you. XXOO

Mary Keasler said...

Now I must add Ocean Grove to my travel bucket list. And Diana Krall! I am so green with envy to be able to hear/see her in person. Was her hubby tagging along? He is also one of my favs.

janice said...

Oh does this bring back memories. In the early '60's I spent a summer working at a restaurant -- I think is was called the Homestead. Spent many hours in both towns.

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